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Even the cheapest landline is 20.95 with shaw. Taxes in is almost 300/year.

Cellular alarm communication is wr/month. A bit better but still.....

Considering the line is only being used 1-4 times a day 4-5 dollars a month sounds more reasonable. I wish someone offered an alarm line only.

Anyway the whole point of this thread is to hear any alternatives to a land line for alarms.

Cellular is one. I have also heard of shortwave radio.
I am thinking majic jack would work but if there was a power outage and no one home to reboot the computer you are screwed.

Thoughts?
 

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Cell phones can run out of battery and phones lines can go down too

I would use VoIP with some kind of power backup and use a real VoIP adaptor that isn't locked to 1 carier

The Linksys PAP2T for example plugs into your router and would reboot on its own if the power flinched. Just make sure you don't buy a Linksys that is locked to Vonage

I don't use POTS (plain old phone) lines but there are some better alternatives to Magic Jack
 

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Get a dog?

Is there some kind of benefit to having an alarm?

Before my hubby moved here I never even locked my door and no one ever robbed me. I live in Scarberia too.

The best way to save money in this situation is to cancel the alarm and the phone line. Keep the stickers lol

IMHO the most valuable thing in my place is me and my family. If I'm not there take the stuff. People are dying to sell me more stuff. If I'm there thats a real problem. Oh and I do have some nice stuff, I'm not saying this because I get all my stuff at Goodwill either.
 

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There is discussion on this web site about alarm services using Rogers Home Phone or other digital phone services. http://www.digitalhome.ca/forum/showthread.php?t=39789

You can't blame the alarm company for the cost of a landline. That's a dedicated pair of wires running to your home, whether you have much traffic on it or not. The only way I could see of reducing cost would be to combine it with some other telecom services you can use. But from the alarm company's point of view it has to be something reliable and technically compatible with their equipment. And connecting it to cellphone that may not be located on the premises would be pointless.
 

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You can blame the alarm company for not getting with the times. They should have the option of digital signals and make the internet "technically compatible" then you wouldn't even use voip

digitalhome.ca is a great site for this kind of question, the most popular voip thread by far is voip.ms which is what I use

Majic Jack, Skype etc don't sell Cdn DID (area codes) but voip.ms does for 1 thing

http://www.digitalhome.ca/forum/forumdisplay.php?f=78
 

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I used to pay $70/mo with Bell Canada. 2 years ago, I switched to Vonage ($23/mo), and got a plethora of features. I've been very happy with it.

Vonage didn't work with my security system. The cheapest Bell telephone landline would have cost me $34/mo (tax included, plus a one-time $50 activation).

After much investigation, I opted for a cellular addon. The addon cost me a one-time fee of $350 (tax + installation). My security company charges me an ongoing fee of $12/mo for this cellular addon, plus $15/mo for the regular fire and security protection (for a total of $27/mo). (It's worth noting that I get a 10% discount on my home insurance as a result of this, and I also get peace of mind.)

I'm pleased with the result. Not only did I save money using Vonage + cellular (versus using a Bell telephone line), I also have the additional robustness of a system which cannot be stopped by cutting power or telephone wires.

(An alternative approach would be to have gone with Teksavvy, which works out to roughly the same [if not a little cheaper] as my Vonage + cellular solution. However, Vonage has a number of perks that I've come to like, and the cellular system offers great robustness.)


K.
 

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I love to hear people using Voip but Vonage just has really good marketing

You can get a Canadian DID for $1.5/month USD and $.005/min = $2.5USD/500 mins with voip.ms. You get all the features you can imagine and you can adjust all the settings yourself on the site. You can sign up and use it instantly for $1.5, and cancel instantly for free

With Vonage you still have to deal with a CSR, use their locked devices, sign contracts for better prices, pay to cancel all the typical gimmicks. It's good but it's more like a voip/telco hybrid

How can voice be so cheap? Well you're already paying for internet usage
 

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I was perusing the Vonage site to see what they cooked up now

I see they charge extra to use the "Vonage Softphone $12.99/month" and all it is is a program anyone can download for free (google "X-Lite") but you have to pay to use it with Vonage service

They also charge $15/month for an additional line.... wow the whole point of voip is there is no line.... I can have all the virtual lines I want for free, even under 1 number I can have sub accts for each computer/smartphone etc

They charge for Visual Voicemail and it sounds like it's the same as what I have for free (it is just wav files playing on your computer after all)
 

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I'll tell you the one reason why Vonage has been the "killer app" for me: they allow you (for a fairly small additional monthly fee) to set up a virtual phone number anywhere in the world that Vonage operates so your clients, friends, or family in those places can call you for the price of a local call.

I know Skype lets you do that too, and I might switch to them if Vonage goes out of business (which has always been a looming possibility since they lost the huge lawsuit from Verizon a couple of years ago).

All my clients and colleagues are in Washington, DC, and I have a phone number with area code 202 set up through Vonage for all of them to call me -- it's a local call for them but it rings in my office in Montreal. My mother-in-law is a pensioner in France and we've thought about setting up a local number there too so she can call us for free.

We have the more expensive unlimited calling plan from Vonage, but it works for me because I use that number for work and spend many hours on the phone in calls to the US, plus we can spend as much time as we like talking to family in France and friends in Ireland and England.
 

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Yes any voip provider lets you have a virtual number, it's inherant in the technology. Most though, like Skype, do not have Cdn numbers

Vonage charges something like $5/month for the virtual number and $15/ month for the line (what line?) and they charge for usage, setup, cancellation etc.

Voip.ms charges $1-$2 for each canadian/usa/france number (virtual) plus $.01 per second incoming (6 second billing increment!) and $0.005 per sec outgoing (depends on country). Or you can pay $5/month for unlimited. You can actually do a lot more with voip.ms than Vonage for far less. Most people would never use all the features and customization that voip.ms has, but Vonage is restricting even for a basic user.

Like I said Im always happy when people are using voip but Vonage is taking advantage of the situation. Notice all the big box stores only let you buy a voip adapter locked to vonage?

Im surprised Vonage hasnt gone out of business just goes to show how good marketing works
 

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Im surprised Vonage hasnt gone out of business just goes to show how good marketing works
I think the value they're selling is convenience. To get my Vonage set up, I made one phone call and they sent me everything in the mail. I plugged everything in and was up and running in about 10 minutes. I don't have time or the inclination to learn how to do all the setup myself. I get my voicemails by email from Vonage, they set up the virtual number for me, etc.

I'm willing to pay them to handle those steps for me. Convenience has value, as any corner store owner will attest. Their prices are almost always considerably higher than those of supermarkets, and yet plenty of people still shop at convenience stores --- because they're convenient.
 

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There is simply NO better, no more higher quality reliable phone service than a landline. PERIOD. Having lived through Ice Storm '98 and Blackout '03 the one constant through both of those major events was phone service. No worrying about running out of power or looking for a power source. Forget about cell and cordless phones. Leave a normal, wire phone set in your house for maximum security and safety and make that your primary communications phone. Landline communications infrastructure is solid.
 

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You can get a Canadian DID for $1.5/month USD and $.005/min = $2.5USD/500 mins with voip.ms.
I could also run Asterisk on my Kubuntu 10.04 LTS box, and setup any number of complex calling rules. Or ... I could just pay a company (e.g., Vonage) to do this for me. ;)

Im surprised Vonage hasnt gone out of business just goes to show how good marketing works
Vonage is much cheaper in the US than it is here. I agree that it's conceptually pricier than (perhaps) it should be, but it's convenient for me and also cheaper than landline alternatives.

As I get older, I find that my time & convenience are also worth quite a bit to me, and I'm willing to pay a company to handle these details.


K.
 

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I think the value they're selling is convenience. To get my Vonage set up, I made one phone call and they sent me everything in the mail. I plugged everything in and was up and running in about 10 minutes. I don't have time or the inclination to learn how to do all the setup myself. I get my voicemails by email from Vonage, they set up the virtual number for me, etc.

I'm willing to pay them to handle those steps for me. Convenience has value, as any corner store owner will attest. Their prices are almost always considerably higher than those of supermarkets, and yet plenty of people still shop at convenience stores --- because they're convenient.
I understand where you're coming from Vonage is geared for consumers. Voip.ms has far more setting but you don't use any of them to get the equivalent of Vonage

It's really not more convenient because you had to wait for something in the mail and call a rep - whereas I signed up online and Instantly had voip. The setup process is to download a program (any softphone) and insert a password/server address. I didn't even read the instructions on the site I opened a live chat and they copy/pasted these simple instructions. To get what you received in the mail I could buy any unlocked device online

It's the equivalent to typing the address of CMF and putting in your password.. you just need the 1 line server address

I understant the concept of a convenience store but we're talking about significantly higher monthly fees for nothing extra (I could understand a 1 time setup fee for someone to download and install the program for you)
 

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There is simply NO better, no more higher quality reliable phone service than a landline. PERIOD. Having lived through Ice Storm '98 and Blackout '03 the one constant through both of those major events was phone service. No worrying about running out of power or looking for a power source. Forget about cell and cordless phones. Leave a normal, wire phone set in your house for maximum security and safety and make that your primary communications phone. Landline communications infrastructure is solid.
I guess you're lucky a single tree didn't fall on any landline and the telecoms kept fueling their generators

The only reliable comms are a radio with generator/batteries, as proven in a real disater
 

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Voip.ms has far more setting but you don't use any of them to get the equivalent of Vonage
Yes, but when you see a page entitled "The Basics" on voip.ms and it consists of text like this, you know this is not something that just any average person can figure out on their own:

voip.ms website said:
You connect any kind of device, server, switch, or software that support one of the 2 protocols we offer (SIP, IAX2) and at least one of the codecs offered to our server. You can authenticate by IP address or dynamic registration, which is supported by almost every piece of VoIP software and hardware on the globe. You can configure multiple devices with different usernames by using our sub account section. When you place calls, we terminate them for you. You can also order DID numbers. When people call these numbers, we send them to you via VoIP.
This language might make perfect sense to you, but I'm lost even before you get to the end of the first sentence. Where do I find a "device, server, switch or software" that supports one of these 2 protocols and codecs? Most people have no idea what an IP address is, and certainly wouldn't understand what dynamic registration is. And "terminating" a call to the average person means "hanging up."

So while voip.ms might be cheaper and better than Vonage, they are crippled by offering their services in a language that is intelligible only to geeks. ;)
 

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I guess you're lucky a single tree didn't fall on any landline and the telecoms kept fueling their generators

The only reliable comms are a radio with generator/batteries, as proven in a real disater
Actually it was a lot more than just me being lucky. Bell was fueling those generators and had posted people to guard them around the clock (I had some friends who did this). Keeping the phone system open and operative was a PRIORITY and this was very much in the public eye.

Generators and batteries are hard to find during an ice storm. Shelves get raided within hours of the power going out. A regular phone is always there, always on. Can't beat that.
 

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I
After much investigation, I opted for a cellular addon. The addon cost me a one-time fee of $350 (tax + installation). My security company charges me an ongoing fee of $12/mo for this cellular addon, plus $15/mo for the regular fire and security protection (for a total of $27/mo). (It's worth noting that I get a 10% discount on my home insurance as a result of this, and I also get peace of mind.)
The security company charges and ongoing fee? When I spoke with them in the past, they suggested the add-on would be a one-time fee. Does the company explain what that fee is for?
 

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Yes, but when you see a page entitled "The Basics" on voip.ms and it consists of text like this, you know this is not something that just any average person can figure out on their own:



This language might make perfect sense to you, but I'm lost even before you get to the end of the first sentence. Where do I find a "device, server, switch or software" that supports one of these 2 protocols and codecs? Most people have no idea what an IP address is, and certainly wouldn't understand what dynamic registration is. And "terminating" a call to the average person means "hanging up."

So while voip.ms might be cheaper and better than Vonage, they are crippled by offering their services in a language that is intelligible only to geeks. ;)

Haha I know what you mean the website is not targeting people the same way as Vonage

Like I said I signed up before I read that, and I never read it even now

I went on chat and they gave me the server address sip.can1.voip.ms and that's all I needed besides my login info to setup the program (same program Vonage uses if you pay extra montly)

You can set up Caller ID and all the extra settings if you want on their site (no harder than using online banking)

The website is confusing I know, they obviously don't waste money on marketing haha
 

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Actually it was a lot more than just me being lucky. Bell was fueling those generators and had posted people to guard them around the clock (I had some friends who did this). Keeping the phone system open and operative was a PRIORITY and this was very much in the public eye.

Generators and batteries are hard to find during an ice storm. Shelves get raided within hours of the power going out. A regular phone is always there, always on. Can't beat that.
And what if a natural disaster or people cut the fragile and unprotected lines in several places or destroyes generators before they are guarded? (I war game these things all the time)

It is a priority over internet but I don't lose any sleep not having a landline at all.
 
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