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Mistakes were made

New York City meets Munich

One wire to rule them all

February 5th, 2003 · No Comments · Uncategorized

Ever notice that your local telephone company enjoys tacking on exorbitant charges for “features” such as call waiting, and caller ID? My basic local service was costing $40 a month, after taxes and “features” were added in. Frankly I do not feel I am getting $40 worth of value. Tack on another $20 a month for basic long distance, and I feel really screwed.

Mind you, I don’t use the telephone that much, but $60 is more than I pay for my T-Mobile Sidekick service, and I find that a lot more value. I know many people eschew a landline these days and go strictly mobile, but I don’t want to turn my mobile number into my primary number.

Enter Vonage. For $25 a month, they’ve sent me a Cisco router with an analog telephone out. I plug it into my home network, and now I have dial tone via the Internet. I get 500 outgoing minutes of local and long distance, which is much more than I’ll ever use. They offer unlimited outgoing for only $40. The service includes all features any one would want: caller ID, call waiting, forwarding, voice mail, and you manage the configuration of your account via the web.

I got my box from them on Tuesday. I went to my phone network interface and yanked my connection to the outside world. I plugged the Vonage box into the back of my home network router, and connected the analog phone jack to a phone jack in my apartment. The Vonage router auto-configured, and with 30 seconds, I had a new phone number. Now all the data in my house flows in and out on a piece of coax.

So far, it works great. And, for the brutal murder I’m planning on committing, it has the added bonus of no 911 support. Sweet!

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