Magic Jack
Magic Jack Problems

Magic Jack (M.J.) works but before you pull the pin you need to weight the cost vs the problems.
First you need a cell phone, for the following reasons.
Second you not only need a computer and a broadband connection (probably 3MB/sec or better). You also need to be fairly computer literate. The first item in the instructions is to plug it into a computer’s USB port and create an account, even if you plan to use the stand-alone network adapter.

They will keep your credit card number for easy access to additional charges.
Any questions can only be answered by logging into online chat to India. That’s where they will copy and paste the online FAQs back to you for 10 to 20 min. before giving you a supervisor that will “file a report.” Code for they cant or won’t answer that question.
If you want to keep your current phone number that will most likely not happen. If you want to try, do not disconnect your current service until you have exhausted all attempts to “port” the number over to M.J. If you succeed your card will be charged $20 and then an extra $10 a year for that privilege.
The best way is to try the “free trial” until you current number works via M.J. then and only then unplug your Plain Old Telephone Service (POTS).
If you let the service lapse you will have to repeat the process with additional fees.
Another service they consider an extra is 911, also another $10 charge. By the way if your network goes down or the power goes out M.J and any 911 emergencies are un-connectable.

That’s why you need a cell phone.
The first thing I noticed after connecting M.J. service is that nothing worked. Being a communications engineer I quickly found out the dinky little device did not have the power to operate real telephones. If you are like me and have several older phones scattered around the house, especially heavy ones with real bells instead of electronic chimes, they will not work. Dump any old phones and try hooking new phones to M.J. one at a time.
Another thing I had was caller ID, with M.J. I now have number ID. All I see is a phone number, no name as with POTS.
I did not think the sound quality as good. Fainter with a digitized raspyness, also if network traffic is heavy the sound can drop out. There is also some delay that adds to the delay of cell phones making chitchat more difficult. If you have a hearing problem or need an amplified phone forget M.J.
Finally once I added up all the extra fees, new phones, etc. to the cost of two years M.J and broadband service then compared that to the DSL broadband with POTS from my old carrier the difference came to a $17 a month savings.

Not at all worth the loss of service for me.

Offender: Magic Jack
Country: USA   State: All USA

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