Vonage has some bad feedback so I want to provide contrast and give my experience as a recent first time customer. I switched my cable telephone provider to Vonage three months ago. I liked the options available, $15/mo (now $18) for 500 minutes or $25/mo for unlimited. I don't talk a lot so I went with the cheaper plan and selected this adapter.
The first problem I ran into was they offered "free activation" if I sign up online. This did not happen. I was charged anyway and customer service was unable to remove the charge. They did issue a credit towards future bills.
My second problem was more insidious. Since I was switching from an existing VOIP service, Vonage began charging me even before my number was switched to them. Because I was on limited minutes, that means I was being doublecharged and they were billing me for minutes they weren't providing. I was much less happy with Vonage's response. They continued to deny crediting my account until I escalated the issue and threatened to go to the FCC. I did not go over my monthly limit so it turned into a non-issue, however these two issues point to a systemic problem with Vonage either being unable or unwilling to foresee and adjust for potential problems in their system.
On the plus side, their V-Portal device works very good. My only gripe is it must be connected to a router. It'd be better if we could just plug it into a cable line directly. From there you plug in your phone jack and it can support two lines. I connected it wrong and the tech who helped fix my error was knowledgeable, helpful, and patient; a rarity in this industry.
Call quality rivals phone service in the few months I've used it. Others have complained but I have had excellent performance on both a 5MB and now 10MB cable connection. On rare occasions there is a little bit of echo but it's not enough to be an issue. I think they have the problems of earlier complaints straightened out.
The website is easy to navigate and review. Emails are responded to in a few hours. Calls with questions are answered soon enough, but again I seem to only get bill credits, not actual refunds. The only gripe about their features is I used to be able to block individual numbers when I wanted to (i.e. known telemarketers). Vonage does not offer this, instead only allowing blocking of anonymous numbers which the telemarketers are getting around.
I'm knocking off another star because of the warnings others gave about an early termination fee. This wasn't clearly disclosed when I first signed up. From their website, "You will be charged a disconnection fee of $39.99 per voice line if your service is disconnected, subject to state and local laws. However, if your subscription date is on or after February 1, 2007 and is disconnected after 2 years following your subscription date, the disconnection fee is waived." You do have the lesser of 30 days or 500 minutes to try the service. If you decide you don't like them you can get your money back and avoid the disconnect fee. I don't subscribe to the theory that we should read every single line of the fine print. Anything forcing customers into a service plan should be disclosed up front; even the cell-phone companies do this.
Vonage has worked fine for me but their shady practices will make me look elsewhere once the contract has ended.
Friday, December 5th 2008 12:07 PM
Fortunately, I've had no problems with their phone service. But their customer service totally blew me off when I was trying to get them to pay the sign-up CashBack. FatWallet said that Vonage told them that they paid the commission to another site. Whenever I contacted Vonage, they always told me it wasn't their problem and that I should contact FatWallet.
Thursday, April 5th 2007 4:46 PM
HORRIBLE HORRIBLE HORRIBLE SERVICE. Impossible to get resolution of problems. You have service one day, none the next. Then try to get someone to help. HAH! Wait twenty minutes to speak with a rep who disconnects you when transferring you to tech service. IF I HAD TO DO IT ALL OVER AGAIN I WOULD NEVER, NEVER, NEVER HAVE A Vonage PHONE LINE. I HAVE THREE AND THEY NEVER #$%@$$ WORK!!!!!
Wednesday, January 17th 2007 11:57 AM
Vonage is good when they have to get you in as a customer, but viceversa! Because of good rates I switched to another company, but Vonage is delaying transfer of my telephone number. Its been 20days since, & still they keep saying 3 more days, & that they are having delays in completing the process. Bad treatment to leaving customers. I think they want us keep paying money for some more time by using these cheap tricks on us.
Monday, February 6th 2006 10:08 AM
Annual Contract: Don't be get fooled by no annual contracts. They will charge you $29.99 activation fee and $39.99 for disconnecting service within a year, even after returning their phone adapter.
One month Free: Also their one month free is not worth when you are porting your number. Number ports in ~30 days so you will be paying atleast one company all the time.
Wednesday, August 31st 2005 7:43 PM
The worst customer service. No way to talk to a live person for billing mischarges. No email reply all the time.
Wednesday, August 31st 2005 7:41 PM
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