Jun 7, 2009, 5:24 PM
Post #52 of 57
I just received my third and final notice from Skype that I had lost the balance of my calling funds, because I have not used Skype and my funds for over 180 days. I posted here a while back about the technical difficulty I was having with Skype. They acknowledge the problem, said a fix was in the works, but it apparently never occurred. Skype has no way to refund unused funds.
When my Skype option went away, six months ago, due to the problem I have described, I got busy and investigated Vonage and MagicJack. I had to do it while I was NoB on a short trip and consequently was a little rushed. Since the Vonage sounded like a better, but much more expensive option, and the Magic Jack was so cheap, I got both. And I am not unhappy now that I did. I leave the Vonage hardware here in my house in Mexico and I take the MagicJack with me when I go NoB, which I do fairly often. Then I can call my own Vonage number here using my MagicJack from a motel, hotel, relative's house, wherever, and talk to my partner, for nothing.
Vonage is expensive, for me. $24 a month. MagicJack was really cheap to get started. About $20 as I recall. I will have to renew when the year is up. I understand that is about $20.
All three systems, Skype, Vonage, and MagicJack require as much Mexican bandwidth as they can get. My calls sometimes break up and become unintelligible on the other end, but not as much now as they used to. We did upgrade our internet bandwidth a while back and ever since the calls have been better.
I have friends elsewhere in Mexico who call me on their MagicJack systems at my Vonage number, and vice versa. MagicJack has to be plugged in, the software up and running on your computer, for it to function, receiving or making calls. Vonage plugs in directly to the internet modem and does not require any special software on your computer. Your computer can be off or completely detached. Like Vonage MagicJack has a nice voicemail feature that emails me that I have had a missed call. My Vonage doodad also indicates that I have had a missed call and shows the number when it can.
I really liked Skype, even though I was using a mic and headphones. It was cheap to call out. I never did get into the rest of the options, being able to receive calls, etc. Vonage just has the feel of a regular home phone, and MagicJack is a close second, were it not for having to have the computer up and running in order to make and receive calls.
I have decided to keep both Vonage and MagicJack, so I can call home for nothing when I am NoB.
I have never tried to use Vonage nor MagicJack to call a Mexican phone, or vice versa.