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Ooma at Woot today only
Old 01-20-2011, 11:04 AM   #1
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Ooma at Woot today only

I have read a number of you talk about Ooma... Woot is offering a refurb for $140....


This seems to be a great price... so I wanted to know from the Ooma owners...

How has it been since your last update... still good?

Did you keep a landline, or go only VOIP...

Who do you get your high speed internet?


And finally... is there any problem with this if one child is downloading vidios and the other playing on Xbox?



Thanks...


Edit to add link...

http://www.woot.com/
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Old 01-20-2011, 11:08 AM   #2
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Ooma at Woot...

You've got your fingers on the wrong keys. Gibberish.
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Old 01-20-2011, 11:16 AM   #3
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We have the earlier Ooma box - has worked great for the last year. No land line * no 911 service with location ID * . Not a big concern for us. We have 3MB and 5 MBps service, fiber optic up north and Time-Warner cable down here. No problem intertubing while someone else yakks. Ooma is great - we picked up our box and took it south with us and as far as people know we are still at our old number. Does better tricks than Ma Bell and does them gratis.
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Old 01-20-2011, 11:17 AM   #4
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Waddya mean "gibberish"? DW has invested a lot of internet time over the years at woot. I can't help with Ooma, though, I have a low tech phone that drops calls, for which I am grateful, and don't want to increase ways of people calling me.
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Old 01-20-2011, 11:31 AM   #5
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I'm still very happy with our Ooma, have had it something like 10 months now. We get internet-only service from the cable company, no land line. It's our primary phone. The Ooma has been glitchy sometimes and unable to connect, but always able to be resolved by turning off and back on again. The cable internet has caused some problems, but that was the cable company, not Ooma, and since the cable people did some repairs/upgrades in the area we have not had problems. I have also successfully hooked up my fax machine and sent faxes through it.

I have occasionally had call quality problems, but this is rare. There is also a slight delay, similar to using a cell phone, but again not usually a problem for me.

Not sure about how well it holds up to multiple people using lots of bandwidth, we don't really have that situation in our household. I imagine it would depend on your internet. We have the cheapest high-speed internet we could get (up to 1.5 Mbps) and I thought we might need to upgrade at least to the next level but it hasn't been an issue. Even if we did, it would still be cheaper than having a land line.

I would recommend the Ooma.
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Old 01-20-2011, 01:53 PM   #6
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I don't have an Ooma, but do know a little about networking and Voip. Took a look at the Ooma web site and it shows that you place the Ooma between the wan connection of your router and the modem. All your internet traffic goes through the Ooma; Ooma is probably acting like a switch that gives priority to the voice traffic (as it should), so large bandwidth consumers behind the Ooma might not be a problem. . . . and the bandwidth requirement for voip is modest -- from 64kbps for an uncompressed voice call even with constant background noise or music on hold to as little as 8kbps for a highly compressed call that might not sound so good; the large bandwidth consumers will probably not notice that Ooma has taken some of their bandwidth.

Edit to add: This has me wondering what motivates a manufacturer to dump their refurbs. I suspect there is or soon will be a new model of Ooma Telo coming out. Have seen this with other manufacturers that use refurbs to do warranty fulfillment.
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Old 01-20-2011, 02:14 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rustward View Post
...you place the Ooma between the wan connection of your router and the modem. All your internet traffic goes through the Ooma; Ooma is probably acting like a switch that gives priority to the voice traffic (as it should), so large bandwidth consumers behind the Ooma might not be a problem...
Yep. Ooma prioritizes the bandwidth in your house during a call. When I go to speedtest.net during a call and then when the phone is not in use, you can see the difference. However, it is a neglible difference, and streaming netflix or using the internet are seemingly unaffected.

We've been using the older silver Ooma since 2009, and it was one of the best purchases ever. As long as the company stays in business, my calls are free. Sound quality is better than a standard phone.

If you don't have an Ooma, I highly recommend that you get one and dump your phone company.
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Old 01-20-2011, 02:43 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by HawkeyeNFO View Post
Yep. Ooma prioritizes the bandwidth in your house during a call. When I go to speedtest.net during a call and then when the phone is not in use, you can see the difference. However, it is a neglible difference, and streaming netflix or using the internet are seemingly unaffected.

We've been using the older silver Ooma since 2009, and it was one of the best purchases ever. As long as the company stays in business, my calls are free. Sound quality is better than a standard phone.

If you don't have an Ooma, I highly recommend that you get one and dump your phone company.
What is your speedtest with/without? If you have a high speed, it might not make a big difference, but if you are marginal it could.

Since my T-Mobile @HOME (discontinued for new users) has it''s own ports and wireless built in, I thought it would do a good job of prioritizing voice. It doesn't. At speedtest.net I get ~ 3.5 Mbps dl, 1.25 Mbps up, 25mSec ping (they don't provide jitter info). If someone is on netflix the phone call is affected.

Speed is only one factor - jitter is important (lower #'s better), delay between packets means that some packets get dropped - they didn't get there in time to put them back in the conversation. Doesn't make a difference on a web page, you don't need everything delivered in order. Here's a site for that:

VoIP Speed Test - Broadband Bandwidth Test - Broadband Jitter Test

At whichvoip I got 3.11Mbps dl; 1.18 Mbps up, 2.4mSec jitter, QOS ~ 70%.

With netflix running, it dropped to:

0.437Mbps dl; 1.13 Mbps up, 10mSec jitter, QOS ~ 55% (likely broken conversation).


Maybe ooma handles this better though.

-ERD50
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Old 01-20-2011, 07:42 PM   #9
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Using the older Ooma box and your test above over what is supposed to be a 5MBps cable line I got these figures:
.9 jitter
0 packet loss
MOS score 4
DL 8.87 MBps
UL 971 KBps
88% score.

No idea what all that means.....
SWMBO says I'm confused and we have 5Mbps up north and 7 down here.
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Old 01-20-2011, 07:59 PM   #10
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I guess I have bad service...

I have a 30% quality of service which says I should not have VOIP... (even though we use Skype)...

Download speed of 2.0 (with a 3.0 paid service)...

Upload of .4 (with .7 paid service)...

Our regular phone has a lot of static at times.. I do not know if it is the wiring in the house or not.. someone wired all the rooms and we had a problem with one wire under a carpet... had to spend over $100 for the AT&T guy to come out and fix the problem...


SOOO, no Ooma for me if I can not use it....
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Old 01-20-2011, 09:20 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by Texas Proud View Post
I guess I have bad service...

I have a 30% quality of service which says I should not have VOIP... (even though we use Skype)...

Download speed of 2.0 (with a 3.0 paid service)...

Upload of .4 (with .7 paid service)...

Our regular phone has a lot of static at times.. I do not know if it is the wiring in the house or not.. someone wired all the rooms and we had a problem with one wire under a carpet... had to spend over $100 for the AT&T guy to come out and fix the problem...


SOOO, no Ooma for me if I can not use it....
Skype is VOIP - but these tests can vary from hour-hour, day-day. But if Skype is usually fine for you, any VOIP should be also. I don;t think Skype has any special voodoo.

For your land line - find the box where the wires come into your house. You can unplug the cable from there, which disconnects your house wiring. Then plug a wired phone direct into that box. If it sounds good there (and that phone is known good), then it is the phone cos problem. Call them from that phone and they can run a test. Should be no charge up to that box.

-ERD50
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Old 01-21-2011, 12:13 PM   #12
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Did you really mean it this way, or the other way?
If the sound is good at the NID then the problem is in the house, no?

Quote:
Originally Posted by ERD50 View Post
<snip>If it sounds good there (and that phone is known good), then it is the phone cos problem.
<snip>
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Old 01-21-2011, 12:32 PM   #13
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Did you really mean it this way, or the other way?
If the sound is good at the NID then the problem is in the house, no?
Ahhh sorry, got it backwards. Corrected version:

If a known good phone is good at the NIC (box), then the phone company is not at fault. Static would be due to the internal wiring, or another phone in the house.

If a known good phone is static-y at the NIC (box), then the phone company is at fault. Call the phone company to fix their line.

I once had a phone that loaded the line down only after it was plugged in for ~ 10 minutes (leaky cap I suppose). That took me a while to find. Plug it in, it's good, plug in the next phone, good, keep going, all good. Later, all bad.

-ERD50
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Old 06-07-2011, 04:05 PM   #14
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Reviving the Ooma thread.

I acquired one hoping to replace the landline. We had 1.5 megabits down and 384kilobits up on DSL. The Ooma service was unacceptable, mostly due to badly broken voice going out. Incoming was OK. Upgraded to the newest version of Netgear WGR614 router to get QOS, but Netgear's QOS seems to be mostly vapor and didn't help much. Tried with Ooma both in front of and behind the router. I can't imagine why, but it actually worked better behind the router.

Upgraded the internet service to FiOS 15 megabits down and 5 up. This helped a lot, but still was not acceptable with the Ooma for replacing the landline. Just about any surfing while on the phone would cause problems. Verizon installs a bridge/router on a coax for this service, so I am no longer using the Netgear router and it will go back. And the Ooma (as well as everything else) must be behind the router. It took me most of a day to configure the Westell 9100EM. I simply made the Ooma the highest priority device in the router's QOS configuration, and that did the trick. Now, no amount of other activity will interrupt a call, at least I have not been able to generate any activity that did, including running simultaneous speed tests during a call.

So, if you have a bandwidth hog on your network, get some good equipment that supports QOS, and you can decide what gets priority. Unfortunately, QOS is not something that most people can just "pick up". Having taken the Cisco CCNA and CCNP classes, I can stumble my way through it and eventually make it work.
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Old 06-07-2011, 05:02 PM   #15
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I wasn't familiar with the "woot" website so I checked it out.

It strikes me as the Home Shopping Network updated for the internet.

Get your Ninja-Blade steak knives now before they are all gone. Hurry supply is limited !
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Old 06-07-2011, 08:59 PM   #16
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I bought Ooma at Costco almost two weeks ago. I have been pleasantly surprised by the sound quality - every bit as good as the land line. Installed according to directions (after modem but before router). very happy with it and am porting two landline numbers to the Ooma and then plan to drop the landlines.
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Old 06-08-2011, 04:04 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rustward View Post
Reviving the Ooma thread.

I acquired one hoping to replace the landline. We had 1.5 megabits down and 384kilobits up on DSL. The Ooma service was unacceptable, mostly due to badly broken voice going out. Incoming was OK. Upgraded to the newest version of Netgear WGR614 router to get QOS, but Netgear's QOS seems to be mostly vapor and didn't help much. Tried with Ooma both in front of and behind the router. I can't imagine why, but it actually worked better behind the router.

...

Obviously bandwidth is very important.


Here is a little information that is helpful.


Ooma Telo (and hub) has an internal router and firewall. Look at the features. Assuming this is correct, putting another network hop is not likely to help performance... but, it may not degrade performance (noticably) depending on your inbound and outbound pipe and other limitations on your network.


Ooma Telo Features | Ooma

Ooma Hub Features | Ooma


Security - the communication is ecnrypted to their server.

FAQs About VoIP Home Phone Service | Ooma


If you look in the forum... someone (a moderator... hopefully someone knowledgeable from the company) is answering questions. They indicate SIP is encrypted to their server as is RTP (i.e., SRTP).

Ooma Forums | View topic - What thread is Ooma referring to? - audio delay fix (?) (SRTP - site moderator)

Ooma Forums | View topic - Are Ooma voice call streams encrypted? (SRTP - site moderator)

Ooma Forums | View topic - Does Ooma use SIP (Session Initiation Protocol)? (SIP - site moderator)

Ooma Forums | View topic - Does Ooma use SIP (Session Initiation Protocol)? (SIP uses tunnel... vpn - from site moderator)
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Old 06-08-2011, 09:00 AM   #18
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We had 1.5 megabits down and 384kilobits up on DSL. The Ooma service was unacceptable, mostly due to badly broken voice going out. ...

Upgraded the internet service to FiOS 15 megabits down and 5 up. This helped a lot,...
Quote:
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Obviously bandwidth is very important.
Actually, the VOIP codecs only need less than 100kbps.

Voice Over IP - Per Call Bandwidth Consumption - Cisco Systems

Higher BW will help to do other things while on the call. And other parameters can be much more important than speed (jitter and packet loss).

Our BW is a only bit better than the DSL rustward had, but our calls were often choppy. Finally called our ISP, and they found some settings in our network box (fixed wireless) that were not good for VOIP, reset therm and things improved drastically, though the speed is the same.

-ERD50
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Old 06-08-2011, 04:52 PM   #19
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...

Higher BW will help to do other things while on the call.

..

Yep! Most people would not want stop other network activities to take a call.
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Old 06-08-2011, 04:53 PM   #20
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Quote:
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Obviously bandwidth is very important.


Here is a little information that is helpful.


Ooma Telo (and hub) has an internal router and firewall. Look at the features. Assuming this is correct, putting another network hop is not likely to help performance... but, it may not degrade performance (noticably) depending on your inbound and outbound pipe and other limitations on your network.
There was some jitter on the DSL service, and the Netgear router had a minimal QOS implementation. 1.5 megabits/384 kilobits is more than enough bandwidth (it only takes 64kbits for a call), but the steadiness wasn't there. On Fios, before configuring QOS on the Westell 9100EM calls were acceptable as long as there was no heavy traffic, but heavy traffic would ruin a call. Having to refrain from network use during a voice call reminds me of the old dialup days.

The router implementation in the Ooma is minimal -- there is barely enough there to call it a router. But it works for some people. On the other hand, the Westell 9100EM that comes with Fios is very robust.

When a router (or more specifically, a path from a router) gets congested, the router must decide what to do with the traffic it cannot immediately forward. There are only about three things a router can do with any packet: forward it, queue it (if there is available memory), or drop it. QOS uses a number of protocols to classify, prioritize, shape, and police traffic. QOS assumes that the network WILL get congested; it is the policy that defines how to handle the congestion.
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