Decided to try Voice over IP (VOIP) and have selected Vonage as my carrier.
So far, I must say that I’m pretty impressed. Everything I’ve wanted to configure so far is configurable and the line quality is much better than I expected.
I was on the phone yesterday while downloading some really large books from Audible.com for my iPod and could see the book downloads slow down but there was no perceptible degradation in the voice conversation.
The router they sent me was a Linksys RT31P2. I tried and tried to set it up so that it was outside of my current network (between my DSL modem and my Wireless router) as described in Vonage’s site. But eventually I had to concede that I really was making this more complicated than I needed to.
I checked out Broadband reports to see if they could shed some light on the configuration changes needed to make my current router not the gateway to the internet. But eventually needed to contact Vonage Tech support to get their advice on it. After all, they must face this issue dozens of times per day. Even though their website is loaded with useful information, it didn’t cover this little issue.
The Vonage guy was obviously in India – definitely the trend for CSRs these days but I was still surprised at how thick his accent was. It took a couple of tries to understand what he was saying. He assured me that I could put my new router inside my network and not have any ill effects due to bandwidth contention. He said if there were any bandwidth issues I could call back and we’d work them out.
It was definitely an easier solution than I was trying to implement and so far so good.