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Discussion Starter #1
For those of you who download a lot like me, or even those who don't here is my information about my switch over from Rogers to Teksavvy.

First of all... Since Rogers implemented traffic shaping, they have slowed down encrypted traffic. For me this had the effect of making my VOIP phone and FAX not work well. That is when I was talking on the phone, my speech would be choppy. My Fax would suffer from "line problems"

Obviously any downloads would be very slow as well.

Then in spite of these problems which I was suffering with Rogers added insult to injury and started charging me extra for extra usage. I was paying an extra $50 per month. Then there was the incessant phone calls urging me to subscribe to higher speed /higher download limit which would still result in my having to pay the $50 and pay premium price with no effect on speed whatsoever.

All in all my internet bill was over $100 per month every month. So...

In August I decided to try a highly recommended new Internet Service Provider, Tek Savvy which had what I needed for about $52 per month.

After waiting over an hour on hold to disconnect my Internet with Rogers I was told that I would have to wait 30 days to cancel my service. So the cross over point was set for September 14th.

Rogers did everything they could to screw up the transition, they told Tek Savvy this was a business, when I have a home office and I worked that out, then 2 days before the transfer they emailed Teksavvy that I was using their modem, which was not true. I had to call Rogers numerous times, they claimed that they had no idea what I was asking about. Then Tek Savvy had to send them an email to verify that they problem was resolved and they took over 2 days to respond.

So on the 14th everything worked like a charm, the first thing in the morning of the 15th I had no internet, except my IPhone.

So the last few days I have spent hours on hold, getting them to try to resolve the problem. Finally early this morning I had internet! And...my husband tells me our download speed is rocking.

My phone is also working very clearly for the first time in over a year and I got to save $50 per month! So even though in spite of my precautions the entire operation was not without Snafus I'm very happy we made the change.

I would warn people who work online or have blogs who want to change over that they may experience service outages and should include a back up plan.
 

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I've heard a lot of good things about Teksavvy. Luckily where I live I have a local unrestricted ISP

Some people say sites like voip.ms and Teksavvy aren't user friendly enough for the average person, but I think they are just used to being bombarded with marketing bs and contracts/fees hidden behind gimmick promotions. If you don't wait on hold for 2 hrs it can't be a real company right?

This internet throttling and poor equipment is what gives voip a bad name

I can watch 720p HD on youtube and people believe that the internet is not good enough to talk on??
 

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The Internet is crap to talk on and the OP has proven it. Only when they stop playing stupid games with voice quality will I ever consider switching. My phone is always on, costs $40 a month for unlimited LD and NEVER has voice quality issues unless the guy at the other end is on a stupid cell or cordless phone.

And the Internet is hardly fast when you have to keep placing phone calls and sitting on hold and waiting for an agent whenever there's a problem. I'll stick with the tried and true thanks.
 

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Thanks for this post. I am getting ready to drop rogers for tech savvy and not looking foward in dealing with Rogers. I'm fed up with how much my bill has increased and my service has decreased.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Royal,

My VOIP phone is working perfectly now finally. No one's trying to send me a fax but I'm sure that's over with now too.

The phone worked perfectly until Rogers started up their traffic shaping machines. I pay $300 annually for phone and that includes unlimited long distance. I also pay 15$ extra monthly for a separate fax line. I signed up like 5 years ago when it was cheaper.
 

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I want to second what the-royal-mail said above.
I'm all for technology and using it to improve our experiences.
In the case of internet usage for voice/video, I think that the technology is there, it's mature enough, and can certainly support this kind of content delivery.

However, there are a couple of things at play here that are preventing it's full exploitation:
- The two big monopolies are actively tampering with the technology to prevent its use in this manner.
They wanna prevent the success of smaller companies that can offer these services at lower costs.
This is why both the two big players have tiered services based on bandwidth usage.
To get more bandwidth, you pay more.
They actively throttle bandwidth to prevent this type of usage.
They include clauses in their contracts that prevent you from using these types of services like Skype, etc.
Anyone on one of the capped bandwidth plan has this clause in their contracts - just read through the fine print.

Secondly, the quality of phone calls is awful.
Vonage is relatively better off than the other ones.
But Skype, etc. is terrible and does not compare with even a half-decent cell phone, let alone true land line.
The other day I was talking to someone who has a VOIP phone and Rogers Cable Internet.
While talking to me, he started downloading a large file.
The quality of the call got so bad that it wasn't even funny.

If we want to leverage the technology fully, the first step is to break the monopoly of Big Bell and Rippy Rogers.
 

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Secondly, the quality of phone calls is awful.
Vonage is relatively better off than the other ones.
But Skype, etc. is terrible and does not compare with even a half-decent cell phone, let alone true land line.
Well, hold on here. I have an unlimited-bandwidth DSL plan from Bell that I've had since I moved here in 2002. I use Vonage for my work phone and have only rarely experienced dropped calls or voice quality issues -- true, it's usually when I'm uploading or downloading a large file at the same time. But it's rare enough that I am comfortable using it as my professional phone.

Skype is even better, in my experience. I've made some calls on Skype using WiFi and my iPod Touch, and the sound quality is better than anything I've ever heard even on a dedicated land line. It literally sounds like the person is in the room with you. I talked for an hour with a friend of mine in Seattle recently on Skype and the sound quality was amazing, both on his end and mine. I have friends who give music lessons via Skype.

Bell does keep trying to get me to "upgrade" to their fiber-optic service and I keep refusing because that service has bandwidth caps and I don't want to worry about whether I'm going to bump into a cap. I've looked at my monthly usage and it generally works out to between 7 and 10 gigs/month, but because I work at home and need to be able to transfer large files and have long conversations with clients, I don't want my bandwith to be capped.
 

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Keep paying Rogers and Bell for you phone then. Some of you remind me of the Xerox bosses who thought the PC and mouse was a joke.

Your friend has throttled internet as explained by Berubeland and obviously doesn't have a QoS router if downloading a file affects voip

During the Olympics I had a dozen or more people streaming the games, downloading who knows what and mostly talking on voip/video chat with their families without a glitch - all on 10Mbps shaw internet. We didn't even hit their dl limit, which they actually tell you about and warn you if you do

Anyways it's only a matter of time before they embrace the technology. Back in the day they used to claim you needed a landline to have DSL. The oligopoly is just stalling until they can market you into a more expensive fiber optic network, then all of a sudden voip will be the latest and greatest thing. Voice doesn't require 1Gbps but I'm fine with that
 

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Skype is even better, in my experience. I've made some calls on Skype using WiFi and my iPod Touch, and the sound quality is better than anything I've ever heard even on a dedicated land line. It literally sounds like the person is in the room with you.
I didn't see your post before mine, but I agree 100%. My iPhone on a QoS and 3Mbps (and really limited by 0.8Mbps upload) sounds amazing on VoIP, especially when talking to another person on the same thing. I don't even need WiFi, in fact my home internet is barely any faster than 3G

Reason is the iPhone has a noise cancelling mic and good speaker

I wouldn't worry about your dl cap Brad unless you are downloading a lot of 720p. I downloaded 100GB in a day once because a friend asked for like 20 tv seasons before he left for Darfur. Normally I use about the same as you
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Mode just reminded me of the nightmare I experienced when I told Bell I didn't need a their phone anymore and switched to a VOIP phone. I also had their internet service. This would be called a "dry loop" internet service because it doesn't include a phone line.

Well as soon as I canceled my phone their internet didn't work, then they told me that if canceled my internet they would charge me $100 even though it wasn't working.

Believe me, I am a very active unhappy customer, I called Bell several times per day for "updates" They had an endless number of tickets and escalations on the problem, for about a month and a half. Finally one of their customer service reps was kind enough to send me my money for service I had not received and cancel my service without charging me $100.

Since then I have not paid Bell Canada even 1$ I am so proud. Rogers I have 2 cell phones with one without a contract, one with a contract but really i would rather not send them any more money either.
 

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"I called Bell several times per day for "updates" They had an endless number of tickets and escalations on the problem, for about a month and a half."

See, this is what I mean. I think what a lot of people don't get is that I'm a busy guy and my free time is valuable and prized to me. I don't have the patience to deal with what you are describing. So while people deal with that nonsense, dropped calls, complicated and predatory cell phone "plans", needing to keep the thing charged, throttling, worrying about talking when files download, I simply pick up the phone when it rings and it's always on, never needs to be charged, doesn't involve me fussing with customer service 1-800 numbers and all the other nonsense described above. Through Ice Storm '98 the phone service was rock solid and I didn't have to do a thing. Same thing with Blackout '03. It's much more peaceful here. :)
 

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Yabut..you can save enough money in between the storms to buy a generator, canned food and shotgun
 

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I do think it's important to keep in mind why people use VOIP: it's to save money, and in some cases considerable sums of money. Saving money often entails a bit of effort or inconvenience, which explains why people are willing to endure these headaches to get their VOIP service.

I have Vonage's relatively expensive "unlimited calling anywhere" plan, but that works perfectly for my case because I'm on the phone with my clients in the US for sometimes three or four hours per day, plus my girlfriend can call her family in France and talk for an hour or more without worrying what it will cost. My clients and colleagues in Washington DC can also dial a local number (and pay nothing) to call me in Montreal.

If I want total reliability, I'll get a landline. And truth be told, we have one here -- it's my girlfriend's number that she's had for 20 years, and she pays for it. I pay for the Vonage and we use it for all our long-distance calling. Her basic phone service comes out to only slightly less than what I pay for Vonage each month, and yet with Vonage I'm making many hours of international calls.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
"I called Bell several times per day for "updates" They had an endless number of tickets and escalations on the problem, for about a month and a half."

See, this is what I mean. I think what a lot of people don't get is that I'm a busy guy and my free time is valuable and prized to me. I don't have the patience to deal with what you are describing. So while people deal with that nonsense, dropped calls, complicated and predatory cell phone "plans", needing to keep the thing charged, throttling, worrying about talking when files download, I simply pick up the phone when it rings and it's always on, never needs to be charged, doesn't involve me fussing with customer service 1-800 numbers and all the other nonsense described above. Through Ice Storm '98 the phone service was rock solid and I didn't have to do a thing. Same thing with Blackout '03. It's much more peaceful here. :)
Had I known...that Bell was going to be so illegal, and what I was going to have to go through...I might have kept them on. However once I started the process, I just got mad, I wasn't trying to cancel all their services, just the phone line which was costing me about $300 per month, my family lives out of town, my hubby's family lives in the States and their prices were a lot more unreasonable back then. Once I started the process, I got very unhappy in a hurry, so unhappy in fact that years later they still have not accomplished to get one single penny out of me.

It's the same with Rogers, had they not changed their service, and increased their prices, I would still be a Rogers customer.
 

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See, this is what I mean. I think what a lot of people don't get is that I'm a busy guy and my free time is valuable and prized to me. I don't have the patience to deal with what you are describing.
This is precisely why competition doesn't work, and why Bell and Rogers can treat us like s$!t and still make obscene profits.

I chose to buy their stocks and get my service elsewhere
 

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The phone and cable companies are the worst for service. The Banks love them because in comparison they look so good. Dropped our land line in Toronto a while back. Saved $50/month and all we were getting were marketing calls anyway.
 

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I downgrade our line to POTS without Vmail during the winter. This has eliminated the telemarketing calls. By the time the rediscover us in the summer, we are leaving again.

VOIP is great but you have to be capable of implementing it. It is not for those who are not tech savvy. We are using it now to call from Italy to Canada. We use it in Mexico each winter.
 

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I've been using voip for my business for 3+ years, the last year on teksavvy. No problems. Once in a while it gets choppy, but it's the exception. No way would I go back to regular phone line for my business. And given how Bell treated us the last time we tried to move a cell phone over, I'm actively working to move my home phone off them as well.

For a small business, here's the kind of stuff I get with voip:
- we have two incoming lines. But those lines are not 'lines'. Each line is actually 5 lines, so I can have 10 simultaneous inbound/outbound calls. Cost? $2.50/month/line. So I pay $5 a month, for more lines than I can possibly use. I pay a penny a minute North America wide, and I'm on the phone a lot. Dirt cheap.
- We moved our office from downtown back to our house earlier this year. Think about how much effort and cost that would be with Bell. On Voip? I shut down the computer, moved it home, plugged it in, and we were live. Total downtime, 2 minutes to drive from the office. Total cost to move those '10' lines - $0.
- An american company that advertises heavily on TV has some Canadian bleedover. Their voip system identifies Canadian callers. I've got an arrangement with them that their Canadian callers can press 1, and get redirected to me - my phone rings. When we set this up to try it out, total setup cost for me to have a new line just for those calls? $2.50 and about 20 minutes setup on my computer. Basically it cost us nothing to try it out.
 

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I've also heard good things about TekSavvy. For users to transmit larger amounts of data, could be worth looking at.

I'm just switched my phone to Cogeco from Bell, combined with Lite internet - $50.94 + HST. The only way I've seen to do better on phone where I live is using VOIP phone, which would require a faster internet connection. Save on the phone, lose on the internet.
 
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