About a month ago we finally managed to get a decent internet connection set up at our house, the first thing I did was call and cancel the old 1.5MB DSL that we were stuck with. Yesterday I got the first bill from the telco after dropping the DSL, even with a $10 loyalty discount after taxes etc. the bill was just over $50. This for a single month of telephone only, currently includes long distance, voicemail etc. but with the $10 discount that worked out to be cheaper than local calls only.
Given how much we use the phone (handful of local calls) it feels like I am throwing away money. Before anyone says to cancel the landline and just use cell phones, where we live the cell service is awful. There are a handful of spots in the house I can get a signal, but it's usually with the phone propped in a window somewhere and not exactly convenient to make/receive a call. We used to have Vonage, and while I had no complaints with it, anytime we lost power the internet goes down, and so of course we lose the phone line. Now, I would not say we get a lot of power cuts, but I would bet at it being more than average. Typically they only last a few hours, but we have been without power for almost a week before. The main worry for my wife being if the school need to get hold of her and the internet/phone is down that they cannot get hold of her.
Having said all that, we are debating cancelling the landline and just dealing with it when we do lose internet/power. Has anyone used Ooma? How is it? any other decent free / cheap phone options? Our ISP now is Comcast and I believe we can bundle a phone service in for $10 a month. I think they also have some kind of battery back up whereby we can keep phone service for at least a couple hours when the power is out but I am not sure on the details of that.
The other option is to cancel the landline and look into something like a microcell to boost cell phone signal throughout the house. My main issue with the one AT&T offer is it uses the internet and costs somewhere around $250. Which I know in 5 months I make back the cost upon cancelling the landline, but with it using the internet I assume if I lose power/internet my cell signal then drops again. I know there are some others out there, Wilson / zBoost but I am not sure if they will work all that well. The Wilson for example appears to not provide that much indoor range.
So, what would you do? cancel landline and use VoIP and just deal with potential power outages? try Comcast for $10 a month? See if I can get AT&T to send me a free micro cell?