Whether you’re a current user of Vonnage, Packet8, or Skype VoIP phone services….or are just curious about them….a good place to learn whatever you want to know is their online discussion Forums. Keep in mind that each of these is company sponsored or influenced….so you’ll have to filter through some obvious biases and emotional attachments to get at what you really want.
If your looking for advice or information on set-up, trouble shooting, special promotions, company news, plan pricing, etc…..from actual users and company types…these are good resources. If you don’t mind wading through the frequent sappy gushings of infatuated fans…you can get some very useful pearls. Occassionally you’ll even hit on some eye opening honest assessments and advice too. Just look hard until you find something that fits your need. It’s there.
It’s no secret that I’m not fond of Vonnage. I feel they’re way over priced, have built there reputation on a massive marketing machine vice a quality product, and their customer service sucks. But this is a pretty loyal and active Forum with a few very helpful regular posters. Better to get the scoop here than listen to that annoying “Whoohoo” jingle again.
Packet8 Forum [community.packet8.net/]
It’s also no secret that Packet8 is my favorite broadband phone service. Particularly for any business applications. Their frequent industry awards for business packages…such as the recent top nod for their Virtual Office IP PBX offering….sold me a long time ago. Their Forum takes an extra step to get into for registration but is worth it. The Forum contents are probably more informative overall about services, applications, and the parent company [8X8 Inc.] than the other 2 forums are.
I’ve never been an advocate of Sofphone services but it does have it’s place. Skype is the hands down king here…but is far from perfect. Their “free” isn’t really free for example….unless those you’re calling also have Skype. Plus their business applications leave much to be desired. But their following are rabid supporters. Plus they have probably the largest share of the VoIP “phone” market worldwide…..especially in Europe and Asia….for now. Their Forum can be more Rah Rah than informational at times but is well worth looking over.
Now if you prefer a more open and unbiased community dialogue and Forum experience….I suggest you trek over to the VoIP Forum at DSLReports.com. It can be somewhat of a free-for-all at times. But there’s a ton of useful information shared on all kinds of VoIP providers beyond just the 3 mentioned above….as well as some links to useful tools to enhance your VoIP experience.
DSLReports.com VoIP Forum
There ya go. Between these open discussion resources you should be able to find whatever you need about VoIP phones … and the specific providers cited. Just keep in mind that it’s all other people’s opinions. The bottom line is that it’s YOUR opinion that counts most.