bye-bye land line telephone

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On 05/13/2016 09:07 PM, Micky wrote:
[snip]

That's right. And I needed it too, when the answering machine in the first base failed.
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Mark Lloyd
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On 05/13/2016 12:25 PM, Don Y wrote:

The extra base was very useful when the first one failed.

These ARE interchangeable. I bought another set of the same model.

I never did. The second base was to replace the first one when it failed.
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On 5/14/2016 10:56 AM, Mark Lloyd wrote:

So, at least one handset lived without a charging cradle; or, you had the second base set up strictly as a charging cradle (hoping that it wouldn't try to talk to the handsets?)
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On 05/14/2016 03:39 PM, Don Y wrote:

The second base was probably just a charger, I'm not sure not since a few of the handsets failed. This was a cheap phone.
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wrote:

I almost left one of mine outside all night, with rain scheduled for tomorrow morning. I had to get out bed at 2AM to get it, and now 2 hours later, I'm still up. At least it didn't have any dew on it.
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On Friday, May 13, 2016 at 12:55:45 PM UTC-4, Mark Lloyd wrote:

Exactly. As I pointed out, new ones can be had for ~$50, for a base with answering machine and 3 or 4 handsets. Plus then you get all new batteries, the new ones are better, etc. I'm about ready myself. On my 15 year old Panasonic, one of the handsets, the LCD display is shot, on another it's getting less visible.
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On Wed, 11 May 2016 19:14:10 -0500, Unquestionably Confused

So iiuc, you end up using your cell phone to tallk on your voip line, for no extra charge.
Or do you end up using your voip phones to talk on your cell phone line, paying whatever the cell phone charges, for international calls for example?
Or both?

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On 5/13/2016 1:45 AM, Micky wrote:

[snip]

Neither, actually. We had the traditional POTS - no VOIP, Cable, etc.
We found that we RARELY got any calls on the land line. They all went to the cellular phones. We simply told AT&T to take a hike and went total cellular but added the Siemens Gigaset for convenience of not having to carry the cells around with us at home.
The transition was more or less seamless. We have our cells, we have our cordless and wired phones. Only difference is we now have TWO separate lines at home and no long distance or local charges.
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On Fri, 13 May 2016 05:52:48 -0500, Unquestionably Confused

information.
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On Wed, 11 May 2016 17:04:07 -0700, Don Y

Thanks Don - appreciate the input. I never considered the "loads" of my old telephones .. maybe someone here has actual experience ? I did keep my phone number. I will lose phone service for power outages and for internet system outages, and also the 911 will be less effective. But the Bell bill has been climbing steadily for 20 years - ~ $ 75. per month compared to $ 20. for the internet phone. I also switched sat TV from Bell Expressvu - to Shaw - free receiver; install; no contract ; slightly better programming - for slightly less money .. ~ $ 65. per month. The "stay with us " phone calls from Bell were quite lame - they are not interested in keeping the minimal users - they are looking for the bigger fish. I suggested that they sell a " 911 only " plan - for people who cringe at losing this great feature - it would generate a little income from otherwise lost customers and provide a continued contact to customers for future business .. and be a feel good thing - something lacking - I'd pay a few bucks for it. John T.
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On 5/11/2016 7:29 PM, snipped-for-privacy@ccanoemail.ca wrote:

[snip]

A good uninterruptible power supply will keep you in business through MOST power outages. We don't use one with the Gigaset but only because if we go to fire up the standby generator in a prolonged outage, the wall warts for the Gigaset and the Panasonic cordless phone is on one of the "emergency" circuits.
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On 5/11/2016 5:53 PM, Unquestionably Confused wrote:

We have probably a dozen 1500VA UPS's scattered around the house. They come in handy in an outage as you can plug a CFL or LED lamp into one and have LOTS of light (instead of living with flashlights or candles). Figure 10-15W for a CFL gives you many HOURS on one of these beasts (battery capacity is ~170WHr; assume 70% efficiency gives you 120WHr -- so, almost 10 hours for a "60W equivalent" CFL)
[Neighbors always wonder why our house is so brightly lit when they are in the dark! :> ]
We can access our internet provider as this computer and "modem" are similarly powered.
I keep a handheld UPS on the bookshelf that I can carry to <wherever> (very small capacity.

The "base station" for our cordless phone uses the battery in the *phone* (if it is sitting in the cradle) to power the base station in an outage. So, the answering machine continues to work -- as do the *other* cordless handsets (you just can't remove the handset that happens to be *in* the base station!)
This is one of those "Why the hell didn't folks think of this 20 years ago??"
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Novel idea, but that's one expensive flashlight. :)
We kind of enjoy the rare power outage. It's an excuse to take a break from technology, build a fire, light some candles, and spend some quality time together.
That said, my VOIP adapter and phone base unit are connected to my computer's UPS system. :)
If the outage lasts more than an hour or two (rare), we can always fall back to our cell phones. Or, people can just call back later.
Anthony Watson www.watsondiy.com www.mountainsoftware.com
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On Thu, 12 May 2016 04:47:41 -0000 (UTC), HerHusband

I have enough UPSs here that we may not notice a power failure right away. My PC is on one and there are 2 in the entertainment center. If we don't have the light on in the living room and are just watching TV. not much changes. The real tip off is the dog goes nuts when those switchers turn on in the UPS. Evidently he can hear the 25kz or so.
As for phones, they will pry my POTS line and my Western Electric phone out of my cold dead hands. It always works. My AOL dial up line always works too. I am not going to be streaming Netflix but I can get out an Email. Actually the DSL is almost as solid as the POTS. Cable? ... not so much. I had to fire Comcast because they were down so often and out so long when they went. The drop is swinging in the air in front of my house.
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On 05/11/2016 11:36 PM, snipped-for-privacy@aol.com wrote:

Way back in 2003 when Comcast launched internet service, reliability was a little sketchy. But for the last 10 years, Comcast has provided awesome reliability.
At&T U-verse is very reliable as well but all T offers is 6Mb down and less than 1 Mb up. Basically useless for today's web.
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My wife still has Comcast at the club and they suck there too (commercial account) When she talked to the senior tech (25 years in this area) he said Comcast bought out all of the mom and pop cable companies in SW Florida but they have not done much to upgrade the 40 year old infrastructure and the service sucks at his house too, Calling customer support is it's own nightmare. OTOH when Sprint bought out the mom and pop phone company here they replaced everything with new. The stuff is still pretty old now (20 years) but the backbone is buried fiber and it works very well. Century link (the latest owner) installed the equipment to allow DSL to run at 10mb and that seems fast enough for anything I do. It is very reliable. I would rather have 10m all the time than 50m intermittently.
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When my UPS switches to battery power it clicks a relay and turns on a fan. So it's easy to tell when it's running off the battery.
It's annoying when the power blips on and off quickly, such as when a branch is on a powerline or something. Click-click-click-click....

I couldn't wait to ditch our POTS line. They charged $100 a month, everywhere was a long distance fee, and we had zero features (caller ID, call blocking, etc.).
I switched to VOIP for $20 a month, free long distance, and a full array of features. I haven't regretted it for a minute.

Dial-up was my only option until Comcast brought their lines out. We can't get DSL, the forest blocks satellite signals, and our hilly terrain and distance blocks wireless signals. We can barely even get cell signals here.
Of course, my only dial-up option back then was long distance, so it got really expensive.

Our Comcast service has been very reliable. We've probably had fewer than 5 outages in the last 10 years, and most of those have lasted less than 30 minutes. Our longest outage was about 4-6 hours.
That said, I did have issues with weak signals when I was splitting the signal to my cable modem and TV tuners. Comcast tried boosting the signal slightly, but said it was within "recommended specs". The TV's would often drop out, my computer tuners would lose the signal and stop recording, and my cable modem would drop out frequently. Thankfully, once I dropped cable TV and just use Comcast for internet, I haven't had any issues. The cable line now runs directly to my cable modem, that's it.
Anthony Watson www.watsondiy.com www.mountainsoftware.com
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On Thu, 12 May 2016 14:19:22 -0000 (UTC), HerHusband

My landline adds $11 a month to my Century link bill plus another $10-15 in taxes but I probably pay those taxes, just for having DSL. That includes free long distance and a bundle of phone options (caller ID, conferencing, call waiting, voice mail and about a dozen other options)

was filling up the logs when I was on Comcast. After any kind of little storm, it was down for weeks. Part of the problem is Comcast is still up on poles and the Telco is buried. Now days Weather Underground sends me an Email when the station is down and I get about one or two a year on my DSL, Usually I get the "it's back up" message a minute or so later. The exception is when it is on my end.
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On 05/12/2016 10:55 AM, snipped-for-privacy@aol.com wrote:
[snip]

One of the features I have with cable phone is "call forwarding". I find that very useful at times, to transfer calls to my cell phone when I'm out. I don't want that all the time because of junk calls, but it's helpful when I'm expecting a call and want to go out.
BTW, I'm still getting a bunch that have caller ID showing "TOLL FREE CALL" and mess up my answering machine if it's set for 4 rings. It looks like there's a message, but it's just some clicking noises followed by a dial tone and an error message from Suddenlink.
[snip]
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Mark Lloyd
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On 05/12/2016 09:19 AM, HerHusband wrote:
[snip]

I first got internet in 1995, when the local phone company started considering a nearby (30 miles) city to be "local".

Here (with Suddenlink) there haven't been many outages. The only one that lasted more than a few minutes was a 5-day one in May 2015 when we had a tornado what broke a lot of poles. Power was out for 4 days.
[snip]
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