Verizon still sucks

Today, download speed was 3.5 Kbps (0.0035 Mbps). I took anothe screen capture, sent it to Verizon and got another $38 credit for December. That's 5 so far.
I rescheduled Time Warner until next week because I am not quite ready for the guy to come over. One line has a 2nd number with a "distinctive ring" as Verizon calls it. The primary number rings once, the 2nd number rings twice.
The issue is that I need to keep the 2nd number but not the primary number. Yesterday, Verizon says the new carrier can port the primary number but not the 2nd number, but that I can switch the 2nd number to primary, and do it that way. I had to sit down and figure out how to arrange this because I have a 2nd primary line that I need to get off of Verizon, either now or later.
So today I called Verizon to switch the 2 numbers. First guy was all sales -- nothing but FIOS, FIOS, FIOS.... I told him 3 times if he said FIOS again, I would hang up and so I did. I called back and got some Mrs. Something... real snotty. When I told her I didn't want FIOS, she disconnected the call. LOL!!
3rd time I got a "real" technical service dept this time. The guy spent 20 minutes trying to switch the numbers and couldn't do it. He said my numbers were "grandfathered" in. So then he started talking about a "specialist" and eventually that led to FIOS hell again.
I felt like he was doing his best, so I asked for the bottom of the barrel slowest speed price. Total, including fees, surcharges, tax, sub-this and sub-that plus all the "special" discounts for being a long-time customer (LOL!) was $79 for phone and 25/25Mbps. That's the same price they advertise on TV for new customers.... What a creepy company.
Equivalent services from Time Warner for 1MB/3MB (which is plenty fast for what I need) is $40. So I told him if he could match $40, I would stay with Verizon. He couldn't do it, so I thanked him and will try calling again tomorrow to get the numbers switched.
Just as soon as I get TWC installed and it checks out OK, I'm going to take a sledge hammer to the Verizon box, and swing on the cable until something comes down. Then if they complain, I'll start asking about FIOS.
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I feel your pain on the second number, distinctive ring thing. I ran into trouble too, but a little differently. I too had Verizon, but I don't think in my case it mattered who the landline company was. I got a MajicJack and wanted to port my number to it. At the time, I wasn't even thinking about my second, distinctive ring number. I had used it for my fax, and hadn't used the fax in years, etc so I wasn't even thinking about it.
So, I put the port request into MajicJack. A day or two later, it came back as "failed" because a number on a line with distinctive ring, second number, etc, can't be ported. OK, fair enough. So, I get hold of Verizon and they understood, were helpful and quickly converted it to just a basic phone line. Problem solved, right? No. The MajicJack system would now not even accept the request to do the port. Where previously I had entered the request, submitted it online, etc, now when I put the number in, it just says that number cannot be ported. It was MJ rejecting it, not even submitting it to Verizon. And despite several attempts to rectify it at MJ, I got nowhere. There was no intelligence there, no ability to address the problem. All they could say was "I suggest you wait awhile...." I asked everything I could think of to try to clarify that, like "OK, this must have happened before. Someone in your center there must have some experience. Does it typically take a few days, a few weeks, months, years?, ie how long might I wait?" The answer was "Sorry, management monitors our calls and I'm not allowed to answer questions like that because I don't want to give you wrong information......"
So, instead of having a satisfied customer paying them revenue, I wound up returning two units to Radio Shack for a full refund. In that low cost VOIP phone world, IMO, MJ sucks. I also had trouble getting the MJ to work with my router and MJ was of no help. They insisted on getting access to my router and PC then making whatever changes needed to be done. I asked that they simply tell me what needed to be changed, they refused. Eventually, with some googling, I found others that had the same issue and found what I needed to change.
And Nettalk sucks even worse. That's who I wound up going with. Have had them for about a year now. It's cheap, ~$40 a year. Call quality is pretty good, not an issue for the most part. But they have two big issues. One is that the device craps out about once a week. A red light goes on and you then have to cycle the power to reset it. How dumb is that? It knows it's screwed, so it puts the red light on. How about having it just do a reset itself, instead of putting the light on?
The other issue is even worse. They mislead customers, advertising all over the website that it's unlimited residential usage for calls in the USA. Only one place, in the actual terms of service, do they tell you that any usage of over 1500 mins in a month is a violation of terms of service and grounds for termination. That's just 50 mins a day average, which I don't think is unusual for many households today.
I found out by hitting it one month. They cut off my service, no warning, no email, nothing. Just no more incoming or outgoing calls. The phone support is unreachable. It took me 5 days of trying to finally get through to speak to someone. I also had opened an online trouble report. In 5 days, no response to that either. If you look at online reviews at places like Amazon, tons of bad reviews now, more bad ones than good ones, with people reporting exactly the same things.
When my time is up with Nettalk, I'm going to try Ooma. They seem to have much better reviews and a lot of happy customers.
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On 12/11/2014 08:32 AM, trader_4 wrote:

Buy one of the Obihai devices and get phone service through PhonePower. Works fine for us. Our "real" number allocated by PhonePower is given out to just a few family members, and our "public" phone number is a GoogleVoice number that offers all kinds of screening/blocking/ forwarding options.
Perce
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according to Consumer Reports the best cell phone service - by far, is Ting, a company I'd never heard of before
haven't tired it myself
marc
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On 12/11/2014 12:39 PM, snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

With Ting, you pay $6.00 (plus reasonable fees) to keep a phone active. Pricing for calls is reasonable, but no "unlimited" anything.
Customer service is good too. No "voice jail", you talk to a person.
http://www.ting.com
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On Thursday, December 11, 2014 1:39:33 PM UTC-5, snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

Ting, like many of the prepaid carriers, rides on Sprint. I have Virgin Mobile Custom, which is a similar concept. It was originally Zact, when I got my phone a year ago. Zact developed the idea, patents, etc that allows you to adjust your plan anytime from the phone. They licensed it and sold their existing customer business to Virgin Mobile, which is owned by Sprint. They sell the VM Custom phones exclusively through Walmart.
Overall, I'm very happy with it. It costs $7 a month for the basic line charge. You get 20 voice mins, 20 texts included, no data. From the phone you can just dial in what you want. Next bump up is 250 mins of voice for $3, 250 txt for $2.50, 20MB of data for $1.40
A plan that gives you 250V, 250T, 250MB D would be $20.
If you use the phone a lot for all three, then one of the conventional phone plans where you get unlimited V, T and 1GB D for $35 is better.
The other thing here in NJ is that previously I had Verizon. Verizon coverage, signal strength is significantly better. But the coverage on Sprint is still OK, no real issue with dropped calls, etc. The main reason I left V was that a year ago, it would have cost me $80 a month to get their most minimal smartphone plan. For $100 I got a brand new ZTE Awe phone from Zact/VMC with 4 months of free service that included ~400V, 200T, 100MB data. My bills after that have never been more than $17. I also got half a month free again from Zact in July and a free month from VMC when they dumped us over.
I'd recommend it for folks that have either low usage, or low/moderate usage much of the time, with an occasional need for more. For others, now that there are unlimited V/T, 1GB data plans available for $35, that makes more sense. Even V is finally down at $35 or $40. If they were at or near that a year ago, I probably never would have went looking and found Zact/VMC, Ting, etc. How much longer this kind of service makes sense, IDK, because essentially unlimited is now down to $35.
VMC also has features that let you control usage on other phones that are on the plan. For parents, they can limit hours of the day that data/ text can be used, when calls can be made, etc.
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