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Anyone using Magic Jack?
Old 09-27-2008, 12:38 PM   #1
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Anyone using Magic Jack?

Saw an ad for a device called Magic Jack that supposedly eliminates your phone bill with a usb device that runs your phone over the internet. It's $20 a year after equipment purchase. You have to have a computer on to have phone service ( a minus) but if you don't all your calls just go to voicemail, so you don't need a computer on when you are not home ( a plus). I haven't found information on whether you can keep your current number, but a $1.67 a month phone bill sounds like a LBYM winner.
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Old 09-27-2008, 01:53 PM   #2
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We got the Magic Jack about 2 months ago. We don't have a land-line, and use our cells. Our cells have poor coverage inside our apartment, so I was looking for something cheap to supplement our service when at home.

It worked great initially, and I was really impressed. However, as I made more calls I found out it sporadically doesn't work. What I mean by this is occasionally I will make a call and instead of the call going through the line goes to a dial tone or a busy signal. Also, once in a while the other caller complains that they can't hear me well. And, one caller said every time they call me they just get a fax machine sound.

So, it's certainly not as great as I initially thought it was. However, it serves our purpose in that for the most part it works and allows me to walk around the apt while having a conversation. If it doesn't work for some reason, I can always call back via my cell from my one spot in my apt where I have coverage or step outside for a moment.

It's worth it to me, but only because it is so cheap, and overall offers me more service in my house than I had before. IMO, you get what you pay for.

BTW, voicemail works perfectly fine so far.
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(49, married; DH 53. I am fully retired as of 2015 (well ok, I still work part-time but only because I love the job and have complete freedom to call off if I want to travel with hubby for work), DH hopes to fully retire 2018 when he turns 55 to access 401K penalty-free...although he may decide to do part-time consulting)
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Old 09-27-2008, 02:37 PM   #3
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Old 09-27-2008, 09:38 PM   #4
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I was OP on that other thread. We still have the magic jack service but we don't use it much. When it is being used, we've had no problems. It seems to slow down the home PC when windows loads. The PC is very old and has numerous other 'issues' which probably does not help. The main reason we don't use it is we have been very slow in getting a wireless system to have service in more than one room so we just use cellphones instead. Previously we had Cavalier Telephone which I also recommend @ $42/mo and it seamlessly replaces traditional landline (except you have to dial in to get voicemail). Magic jack sends you an audio file via email with each voicemail message.

You don't get to keep your old number with magic jack. They have a few exchanges available and we chose one which is a few miles from here....good disguise for caller ID
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Old 09-27-2008, 11:03 PM   #5
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Thanks...I pay $25 a month for digital telephone via Cox, so changing my number doesn't seem worth it yet.
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Old 09-28-2008, 10:38 AM   #6
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We just got two Magic Jacks and tested it out two weeks ago. It worked well. I have sent one out overseas to a relative to see how it works. Apparently, overseas call to the U.S. is a cheap and easy way to call via MJ because it is like a neighborhood call (albeit with a computer) using a local number assigned to the MJ. No telephone or cellular companies involved. I'll follow up later.
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Old 09-28-2008, 11:56 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by laurencewill View Post
Thanks...I pay $25 a month for digital telephone via Cox, so changing my number doesn't seem worth it yet.
I used to be part of the "Yeah, but" crowd who preferred to have a land-line dial tone from a separate voltage source after the hurricane, earthquake, power outage, or other disaster.

But now my DSL bandwidth comes from the same source as the dial tone, my primary communications circuit could be a battery-powered laptop, and the only remaining concern is 911 service-- which would probably be just as available from our kid's or neighbor's cellphone.

The only remaining obstacle to ditching the landline is price. As soon as someone reliably beats the phone company's $25/month service...
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Old 09-29-2008, 12:22 PM   #8
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My land line was up to $30 or so, just for local service only. It was a no brainer to switch to Vonage for me. But, I'll have to keep high speed internet, for additional $45 a month. No DSL or any other service availalbe in my area.

I bought 1 year of Vonage so it's a less than $25 a month. Service has been great so far.
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Old 10-20-2008, 02:01 PM   #9
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The MJ sent abroad (Far East) works very well. If used from the Far East linked to the computer, it is a direct dial to any10 digit phone number in North America!!! As long as the 'puter is on, anyone from NA can call back the MJ phone number just like making a call in NA. Occasionally, the connection is cut but can be restored promptly. More often than not, one can talk for hours on end continuously.
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