ooma VoIP: Worth It?

Discussion in 'Community Discussion' started by elitree, Sep 9, 2008.

  1. elitree macrumors newbie

    Aug 12, 2008
    There's a company called ooma that's selling a $250 VOIP device:


    The idea is that you can use their device with your existing phones, port your existing phone number over to them (for a fee), and then you don't have to pay monthly phone fees anymore.

    I was really psyched when I found out about them (despite their schlocky flash "learn more" videos), and though it seems like a neat idea, I'm trying to investigate a bit further before I sign up. Googling around, it's hard to tell whether the company will be around in another year, or whether they're turning into a successful operation. But the call quality is supposed to be great, and the thought of avoiding a monthly VOIP bill is tantalizing.

    Does anyone use ooma? Anyone know more about their prospects for sticking around? I'm currently considering switching to them from Vonage, but would love to hear from current users (or critics) before pulling the trigger... thanks!
  2. dilbert4life macrumors regular


    Jun 23, 2008
    Bolivia, according to my flag :P
    I just saw their site today. Looks great, I was pretty pumped about it, and when I finally get my own place, I think that I am going to give them a try. I mean, it would be simply amazing if this thing really took off and gained a presence, that way we could be a little more sure about their "staying ability."

    You brought up a valid point, is this company even going to be around in a year? I sure hope so.:apple:
  3. stubeeef macrumors 68030


    Aug 10, 2004
    I would like to hear more from users.

    I am very interested in this but keep hearing this "staying power" discussion. Makes me wonder if it is kill-it marketing from Vonage or ATT.

    It seems like the ticket for me, I hate monthly bills and would love to eliminate as many as possible. I have been reducing cable channels and other bills, I would love to kill my phone bill!!!

    for those curious...

  4. gotvoip macrumors newbie

    Dec 30, 2008
    Looks interesting. I wonder if it is a skype box in disguise!
  5. stubeeef macrumors 68030


    Aug 10, 2004
    It has nothing to do with the company Skype but and calls don't have to be to another member to be free. The weak point is that calls go through the company and back out, if the company goes under or down so does the service. But at such a low cost it seems a no brainer to me! I will be grabbing one this weekend.
  6. Cursor macrumors 6502


    Jul 17, 2002
    Anyone use Ooma VOIP?

    Hey guys-I was wondering if anyone uses ooma VOIP as their main telephone service.

    Currently, I have Vonage and have the modem plugged into my wall jack to create a loop so all the phones in the house can plug into any jack and use the Vonage service, without each connecting to a modem. Is this same setup possible with ooma?

    Are there any serious downsides to ooma (I heard the phone support is horrible)?

    Any other information you can give me that isn't already covered on their site?

    Thanks in advance.
  7. Blake the Great macrumors newbie

    Apr 18, 2009
    Experience with Ooma?

    Has anyone here ever used Ooma or currently use it as their main telephone line? Is Ooma reliable and do you like it?
  8. elitree thread starter macrumors newbie

    Aug 12, 2008
    I finally broke down and got one last month, replacing my Vonage service. I've been happy so far (I've only been using it as my main line for 2 weeks though). The call quality is fine, at least as good as Vonage was. The setup was pretty easy, and I ported my old phone # over from Vonage. I've found it to be reliable so far, and would recommend it (with the usual caveats about hoping the company stays in business, etc. :) )
  9. Cursor macrumors 6502


    Jul 17, 2002
    I've been using Ooma since I posted my last question in February, and it has been great! The customer service is wonderful.

    The only slight problem I had was when my number was being ported from Vonage; the call quality was pretty bad for about two weeks. But since then everything has been fine, and I've been without a phone bill for 7 months!

    By the way, I've since seen that Costco is going to sell Ooma in their stores, so that is a big reassurance to their staying power.
  10. tivoboy macrumors 68040

    May 15, 2005
    more money

    Ooma just took in another 18$MM in VC money, but it seems there have sold "100,000's" of the units. I picked one up again last week, for 140$ AR/AC, which I felt was worth it. I can retire an older vonage unit and save $$$.
  11. stubeeef macrumors 68030


    Aug 10, 2004
    I have the new Ooma Telo and use the premier service.
    Costco has/had a special deal on their equipment.
    I love it-free second line-forwards calls or voicemail to email-all types of nice features. It has a great forum for assistance if you have issues (better than calling their customer service) and a bit of an Apple-esk following.
  12. Resist macrumors 68030

    Jan 15, 2008
    I am very interested in Ooma but have questions. From what I understand the Telo is the latest model. But what I understand is that the Hub/Scout combo has no regulatory fees, even after the first year. If this is true then that is the model I leaning towards. But I don't really understand the other differences between the models. I am not interested in the Premier service as I want no monthly phone charges. Can someone explain the other differences between the models in plain English please?
  13. tivoboy macrumors 68040

    May 15, 2005
    hard tim

    I think you're going to have a hard time, find an original ooma and scout that doesn't require additional fees. I THINK there was also an activation requirement by begin of 2010 to avoid the fees, so just finding one won't guarantee no fees going forward. I think
  14. Resist macrumors 68030

    Jan 15, 2008
    From what I just discovered, the box on the core ooma system (Hub/Scout) says no regulatory fees and therefore you can't be charged it. The problem becomes if you can find any first generation ooma's left with that printed on the box. If they are still producing them then I would think they took that off the box, so you now have to pay the annual regulatory fees.

    Also I understand that while the new Telo looks better and has second generation internals, it has less features than the Hub/Scout if you don't have the Premier service. One feature the Telo does not have is caller ID names. I am not interested in paying $10 a month for the Premier service, so I am thinking the Telo is not what I want.
  15. tivoboy macrumors 68040

    May 15, 2005
    no production

    I certainly don't think they are producing the original ooma hub and scout at all, so I dont' think they would be producing a box with old language.

    Also, the Telo hardware and handsets are DECT 6.0, which many people don't want/like.
  16. Resist macrumors 68030

    Jan 15, 2008
    One other problem I have is that I don't have a phone jack where my modem and wireless router is. And there is no way I can run wires to them.

    Between my Tivo, XBox, Slingbox, computers and now Internet telephone, it is getting more and more difficult to find a way to connect them all for internet access when my home isn't wired for Ethernet cable. I've been using 802.11g which is slow due to the layout of my home. So I have moved my cable modem and router to the living room behind the TV, so the Tivo, Slingbox and XBox and be directly wired to them. But now my computers are slow for gaming using an 802.11g network adapter. To put an Ooma near the cable modem means there is no phone jack behind my TV in the living room. And where there are phone jacks, then there are no cable jacks for internet access.

    One solution I have been thinking about is using a powerline adapter. They has some that get up to 200MbBps. But this adds yet even more cost to the mix and if two of these are not on the same electrical outlet circuit it might not work well.

    I have thought about wiring my house for Ethernet cable but without cutting open walls, it is impossible. I have a concrete slab floor, on a two story home.
  17. tivoboy macrumors 68040

    May 15, 2005
    I've used pl boxes about seven years now. Using newer netgear HDX101 at the moment for internet and HD streaming around the house. The LIST 200mb but only truly put out about 80mb/s. I got three of them for 75$ on ebay about two years ago, 30-40$ a unit is about normal. Get a pair to start, they REALLY do work and make things so much easier and faster.
  18. Resist macrumors 68030

    Jan 15, 2008
    I don't doubt they work, but I am concerned if where I place the ooma would be on the same circuit and thus reducing the speed even further.
  19. nickcage49 macrumors member

    Jan 14, 2009

    Ooma works great, but it slows down my internet connection. I'm trying to get that resolved now. But Ooma rocks, it's a great product. I use it and skype, Ooma for domestic calls and skype for international.
  20. Resist macrumors 68030

    Jan 15, 2008
    Okay so I bought an Ooma Core from Amazon for $200. The outside of the box said no monthly fees and I didn't have to provide my credit card info for the free 60 day Premier trial. That means after the trail is over and I don't keep the Premier service I will not be charged any monthly fees.

    I purchased two Monster Powernet 200's, which solve the issue of having my Ooma in an area away from my Modem and Router. They work great and show that my network speeds are in the orange on the device (50-100Mbps).

    I also connected a VTech Dect 6.0 wireless phone without an answering machine to my Ooma.

    My plan is not to keep the Premier service, even though some of the features are really nice. I bought the Ooma to have free telephone service, especially free long distance. Besides I think $10 a month for the Premier service is a bit much. I love the idea of a free phone with caller id and id names.

    The only real issue I have is the size of the Ooma power brick. Since the Monster Powernet 200 takes up all of the electrical outlet, the Ooma power brick is to wide to plug into the Powernet. This means it needs to be plugged into another electrical outlet or and extension cord to work with the Powernet. I wish products would stop using power bricks that have electrical plugs in them, instead of using cords from the brick to the wall.

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