Listener Kate Emailed us about Magic Jack at the end of 2008:
This is a small device the size of a memory stick with a USB port on one end,
and an RJ11 Telephone Socket style connector on the other end
that allows a fixed rate Low cost long distance USA/Canada wide calling plan
It requires a Windows XP or Vista PC
or an Intel based Macintosh but NO software installation required as it 'runs' fromt he device itself.
Here is their Site: http://www.magicjack.com which says you get 30 days free trial time So if that's True there's nothing to lose but some time if you don't like it.
Then, it's under $4 a month call anywhere in the USA/Canada… NOT BAD.
I do not have one but several clients do, and called me with it. Call quality is fine, not a Problem , in my opinion.
and it Self Installs (IE plug it in and wait up to a minute for it to configure itself and you are in business…)
it will NOT work with older style non Intel MAC computers otherwise PC XP, Vista & Intel MACs work Fine
Pluses- If you try it and like it:
1) Dump your Long Distance Plan for Outgoing Calls on your land line. If you are unlucky enough to use ATT's, that saves some $40 a month right there. this DOES NOT affect anyone's INCOMING calls at all. Actually for example I use my cell phone for long distance which is why I did not get a magic Jack..
2) Real Voicemail so when it is NOT connected it will collect and hold calls for you so when you ARE connected you can get them
3) Connect any normal handset cordless or corded phone to the jack and it rings normally and is used in a nontechnical way. Computer & Interenet need to be On and Up though, and may not work if the PC Goes to Sleep!
4) Use Anywhere. you can plug Magic Jack into ANYONE's computer anywhere in the world, so long as they have fairly speedy Internet access- even say,
Europe to make free USA calls (But NO free calls to Europe itself, strangely : 🙂
you could add it to your Laptop and go to a WIFI HotSpot and use it, say.
1) NOT a local number- And you cannot pick one. They currently seem to give out Marysville NUMBERS which show up in caller-ID but no NAME shows up.
People returning calls via. caller ID (which I often do) will get the 'wrong' number rather thatn your more relaible land-line for you or will not actually 'know' you as 'you' are in apparently in Marysvville or Woodland..
2) This IS a so called VOIP solution BUT it is probably NOT compatible with anything else. You cannot for example put the account into a VOIP call box-
It HAS to be as far as I can tell, their special adapter in use to work right…
3) No Call Forwarding or any of those type of features.
4) This one is Obvious. It Requires a Computer.
Not as trivial as it sounds as your Itnernet Service, Power, Computer and cabling AND the Magic Jack system must ALL work and be on for ANY of this to work
so It is probably only useful for a roaming consultant or a call-out plan.
5) OH and finally- If you lose the unit, you just lost all the access and probably need to call to get it disabled, Also I doubt you could get the same number back, But it's all a free trial then cheap. Try it eh? Let me know what your experience is!
I am using these Notes for our Zen Blog So it may be more detail than you REALLY wanted!
Your Comments about clarity and actual Answering of Question invited.. Zen At Kvmr Dot Org.