I think it's time to cut the landline cord, how to do it?

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squirm
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I think it's time to cut the landline cord, how to do it?

Post by squirm » Sun Jul 22, 2018 11:56 am

Kids are off at grandmas, so have some time to think how to cut back on expenses. One thing that I've been eyeing is our landline phone and DSL via AT&T $70/month. It sits there pretty much useless as far as talk goes. Wife and I have cell phones, we are currently on a Sprint plan (free for one year!). Our laptops connect to the DSL. Our solar and webcams use the DSL too. I was thinking about getting rid of the phone and DSL and getting a house cell phone that the solar, webcams and laptops can connect to. Or is there something better or I'm overlooking? What about 911?

mhalley
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Re: I think it's time to cut the landline cord, how to do it?

Post by mhalley » Sun Jul 22, 2018 12:20 pm

I use Ooma for landline. Junk fees $5 a month.
https://www.ooma.com/voip/link-ooma-hom ... -services/
Of course you need internet access to use it, but cutting out the phone portion of your dsl plan should result in some savings.

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Pajamas
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Re: I think it's time to cut the landline cord, how to do it?

Post by Pajamas » Sun Jul 22, 2018 12:25 pm

You need internet service to use a VOIP such as Ooma.

In your situation I would just look for the least expensive internet service available and drop the land line completely. If the number is important to you for some reason you could transfer it to a temporary cell phone and then to Google Voice and then forward it to your cell phone. You might also simply use the landline number as your cellphone number and skip the Google Voice. (Google Voice will not accept transfers of land line numbers.)

I would not want to rely on internet through a cellular phone, I would want wired service of some type, DSL, cable, fiber optic, etc.

jaxbmw
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Re: I think it's time to cut the landline cord, how to do it?

Post by jaxbmw » Sun Jul 22, 2018 2:28 pm

There are two components to your landline cord, one being your landline phone and the other being your internet connection.

It is easy to eliminate the landline phone. You can go with cell phones or you can add OOMA or OBITALK. For a small fee you can retain your actual home phone number and handsets using either OOMA or OBITALK. By going this route you have three communication points which is good if one goes down.

The real issue becomes what to do about your internet access. If you are satified with your DSL speed and service just compare it to the least expensive available cable provider in your area. Make sure that if it is DSL that the speed is sufficient for OOMA or OBITALK.

You should be able to cut your bill in half with little problem unless you are in a very rural location.

bob60014
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Re: I think it's time to cut the landline cord, how to do it?

Post by bob60014 » Sun Jul 22, 2018 2:31 pm

We cut the landline some time ago and now just use the cells. Prior to that we used Vonage for years @ $9.99/mo. without issue.

For 911, it depends on where you live. We're in the Chicago metro area and my suburbs 911 system and the cell providers Phase II location accuracy is quite good so we're comfortable using it for home use. In other areas near here I would be hesitant doing so.

Here is some info and reminders about this.
https://www.fcc.gov/consumers/guides/91 ... s-services

BogleBike
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Re: I think it's time to cut the landline cord, how to do it?

Post by BogleBike » Sun Jul 22, 2018 4:03 pm

Google "internet provider (name of your town or area)" and find out what the offers are.

You need internet for your laptops and such. Most people use a faster more modern "broadband" internet connection instead of DSL, because they are available and often at a lower price. The measurement that tells you how fast the connection is usually goes by the name "Mbps", meaning "Mega bits per second" (millions of bits per second). To have your internet working at a comfortably fast pace, you need about 5 Mbps of download bandwidth for each person in the house. That's enough for each person to watch a video (a movie), or to easily read a modern website without being slowed down too much by the ads. You could get another 5 or 10 Mbps to cover the cameras and other devices.

Buy the cheapest service that has enough speed for you. They will be happy to add more bandwidth later if you need it. Keep the service as follows unless you have a performance problem. Note that many companies have a low introductory price, and then they raise the rate after 6 to 12 months. There will be some taxes above the quoted price in any case. Check after 6 months and 12 months; if the price went up, shop around again. Start the actual transition from the old company by calling the old company and saying you need to terminate service. They will ask why, and usually offer to give you a lower price again.

One of the companies will be your DSL provider. They have better service available at lower prices than $70, they just didn't switch you to to it because your current service is more profitable to them. You have to take the initiative. Get the new internet service to replace the DSL, even if it's from the same company, and cancel the landline completely. I would mostly use your cell phone as your phone. Paying for the landline too is just paying extra. In any case, if the new provider is a different company from your DSL/landline, make sure to tell the landline/DSL company to terminate your old service. The companies have no problem both charging you fees at once.

PS. A modern broadband connection will usually give you wifi throughout the house. If you haven't already done so, set cell phones to have wifi "on", and connect them to your new home wifi. That will cut down cell usage costs.

SurferLife
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Re: I think it's time to cut the landline cord, how to do it?

Post by SurferLife » Sun Jul 22, 2018 5:39 pm

You can keep your DSL, go with cell service internet, or get cable internet if it's available to you. If you want to look into using your cell service for your home internet, you'll want to get a 4G/LTE router, Pepwave makes a good one. This converts the cell signal to wifi for your house. Verizon also has one they sell. If you use a lot of data, you'll want to keep your DSL.

Jablean
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Re: I think it's time to cut the landline cord, how to do it?

Post by Jablean » Sun Jul 22, 2018 6:06 pm

squirm wrote:
Sun Jul 22, 2018 11:56 am
Kids are off at grandmas, so have some time to think how to cut back on expenses. One thing that I've been eyeing is our landline phone and DSL via AT&T $70/month. It sits there pretty much useless as far as talk goes. Wife and I have cell phones, we are currently on a Sprint plan (free for one year!). Our laptops connect to the DSL. Our solar and webcams use the DSL too. I was thinking about getting rid of the phone and DSL and getting a house cell phone that the solar, webcams and laptops can connect to. Or is there something better or I'm overlooking? What about 911?
Your kids will never forgive you for getting off of fast unlimited internet which is not what a house cell phone would provide. Our "landline" is now an AT&T phone with a base that will travel with you and can host limited internet if we are off at a cabin or something and willing to pay for extra minutes. I think I may have got a snow job but family is thrilled to go back to Direct TV after spending a year on Cable TV. Cable internet was fine we just kept topping out. What I don't like on cells and our home ATT is there is no caller ID. I miss that.

UpperNwGuy
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Re: I think it's time to cut the landline cord, how to do it?

Post by UpperNwGuy » Sun Jul 22, 2018 6:12 pm

I terminated my landline in 2012 after realizing that none of my three adult children had ever had a landline, and they were all surviving quite nicely without a landline. I've never missed it. I get my internet through a cable provider, but I buy an internet-only package that doesn't include television or video services.

RickBoglehead
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Re: I think it's time to cut the landline cord, how to do it?

Post by RickBoglehead » Sun Jul 22, 2018 6:37 pm

We do just fine with 25 Mbps cable internet.

squirm
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Re: I think it's time to cut the landline cord, how to do it?

Post by squirm » Sun Jul 22, 2018 7:05 pm

just a quick update,
Our DSL is 1mbit/sec yes 1. We are very rural. Our cell phone internet is much faster. I use the cell wifi hotspot when doing large Windows or Office installs. We don't really need anything more than the cell phone speeds, frankly the DSL speed is fine most of the time. The kids are not allowed electronics, games or gadgets so I'm not worried about what they think.

There is no cable in our area. We have Dish and have had Dish for 15 years, I'm satisfied with them. We don't watch TV on the internet,except youtube (frankly I can pull the Dish too and watch the tons of reruns on the DVR drives and external drives I've recorded over the years, but that's a different topic).

Katietsu
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Re: I think it's time to cut the landline cord, how to do it?

Post by Katietsu » Sun Jul 22, 2018 7:21 pm

Are you using the WiFi hotspot off of your phone? I would think you would want to be looking at a freestanding hot spot to replace the DSL. Start by determining how much data you are currently using via DSL.

You could then get a cheap tablet or cell phone without any cellular service and use google voice with the hotspot if you needed to have that at the house.

SurferLife
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Re: I think it's time to cut the landline cord, how to do it?

Post by SurferLife » Sun Jul 22, 2018 7:52 pm

squirm wrote:
Sun Jul 22, 2018 7:05 pm
just a quick update,
Our DSL is 1mbit/sec yes 1. We are very rural. Our cell phone internet is much faster. I use the cell wifi hotspot when doing large Windows or Office installs. We don't really need anything more than the cell phone speeds, frankly the DSL speed is fine most of the time. The kids are not allowed electronics, games or gadgets so I'm not worried about what they think.

There is no cable in our area. We have Dish and have had Dish for 15 years, I'm satisfied with them. We don't watch TV on the internet,except youtube (frankly I can pull the Dish too and watch the tons of reruns on the DVR drives and external drives I've recorded over the years, but that's a different topic).
We were very rural as well and went with the 4G/LTE router, but we didn't have the option of DSL (even if we did, it was very slow so wouldn't have done it). The router is essentially an additional device to your cell phone plan that has it's own SIM chip. We had considered hotspotting from our phones, so our laptops could get on the internet, but there are some issues there. Not all providers/plans allow hotspotting, and if you get an incoming call, it can disconnect you, or at least it did at the time. We really had no choice in how we went, and doing satellite internet was simply MUCH too expensive and came with its own issues, namely delay for video calls. For our situation we had to take it a step further and boost our cell signal with a $1,000 piece of equipment, but it doesn't sound like you're in that situation. If you'd like to try to strengthen your cell signal further, you can attached an external directional antennae to some 4G/LTE routers. If you don't know where your nearest providers cell tower is to point the antennae, you can use the app OpenSignal. If you have questions about the technical aspects of the setup, just PM me and I can walk you through it. Good luck.

gtd98765
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Re: I think it's time to cut the landline cord, how to do it?

Post by gtd98765 » Mon Jul 23, 2018 4:18 am

The key is how you get internet service. Where I live, Verizon does not allow you to have DSL unless you have a landline phone number as well. Although I live in a big metropolitan area, DSL speed maxes out at 5 Mbps, and has not changed in more than 15 years. Only other source of internet is Comcast, which will not tell you what the bill would be when you get a quote (since they don't mention rental fees, taxes, etc).

Lack of competition in the ISP sector in the US leads to this situation.

A440
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Re: I think it's time to cut the landline cord, how to do it?

Post by A440 » Mon Jul 23, 2018 6:08 am

mhalley wrote:
Sun Jul 22, 2018 12:20 pm
I use Ooma for landline. Junk fees $5 a month.
https://www.ooma.com/voip/link-ooma-hom ... -services/
Of course you need internet access to use it, but cutting out the phone portion of your dsl plan should result in some savings.
+1 We have been using it since 2014 and based on our prior phone bill of $40/month have saved $1,700. PM me if you'd like a link to save $20 :moneybag

SimonJester
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Re: I think it's time to cut the landline cord, how to do it?

Post by SimonJester » Mon Jul 23, 2018 7:56 am

What are your data caps on your cell phone plan? You could hit the data cap or even the slow down cap (if unlimited)...

Do you plan on streaming video from Netflix in the future?

Do you need a house phone if everyone has a cell phone?

Running any of the VoIP services over a hot spot may be sub optimal, reading through the various forums for the popular VoIP services, it doesn't appear many support this configuration. Most of the adapters are meant to run wired into a router, and most WIFI hot spots devices do not have an Ethernet port...
"They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety." - Benjamin Franklin

Jim85
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Re: I think it's time to cut the landline cord, how to do it?

Post by Jim85 » Mon Jul 23, 2018 8:48 am

I did this about 6 months ago. Had Verizon Triple play (phone, cable and internet). Now only have Verizon $39 month internet only, plus YouTube TV. I ported my landline phone number to Google voice which is free and forwarded (in Google voice) all calls to our cell phones. When a call comes to our old phone number it rings both my cell and my wife's. No need for Ooma. This was only a temporary measure until everyone gets used to calling our cells directly. The only complication was Google Voice can only port from a cell number. So I ported the house phone number to an old cell we had (got a cheap AT&T plan, forget what it was called but was just a cheap pre-paid minimum block of minutes)...then ported the number from there to Google. Not as complicated as it sounds. Both ports completed in less than a week.

BBQ Nut
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Re: I think it's time to cut the landline cord, how to do it?

Post by BBQ Nut » Mon Jul 23, 2018 10:38 am

Does anyone know if the Ooma Telo will work with an existing cordless system and its own built-in voicemail?

I have a Uniden cordless system with base unit and voicemail that then goes to 4 cordless phones around the house. So, it would be nice if the Ooma will pass calls to the Uniden voicemail.

Also, can you register your Ooma unit with NomoRobo spam blocking?

TIA!

Silver Bullet
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Re: I think it's time to cut the landline cord, how to do it?

Post by Silver Bullet » Mon Jul 23, 2018 11:00 am

The other thing to keep in mind when "disconnecting" from landlines is ones security system, if applicable.
Most require a dedicated landline, although some newer ones have stand alone 3G/4G/LTE connections. There may be others that utilize wifi, although I'd be concerned about any connection issues during an emergency. Of course, if you don't have a security system, this is a non-issue.

A440
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Re: I think it's time to cut the landline cord, how to do it?

Post by A440 » Mon Jul 23, 2018 11:20 am

BBQ Nut wrote:
Mon Jul 23, 2018 10:38 am
Does anyone know if the Ooma Telo will work with an existing cordless system and its own built-in voicemail?

I have a Uniden cordless system with base unit and voicemail that then goes to 4 cordless phones around the house. So, it would be nice if the Ooma will pass calls to the Uniden voicemail.

Also, can you register your Ooma unit with NomoRobo spam blocking?

TIA!
Yes. We have a 2-cordless phone system. The base will need to be connected to the Ooma device, which in turn, will need to be connected to your modem (unless you go with a wireless model).

BBQ Nut
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Re: I think it's time to cut the landline cord, how to do it?

Post by BBQ Nut » Mon Jul 23, 2018 11:26 am

A440 wrote:
Mon Jul 23, 2018 11:20 am
BBQ Nut wrote:
Mon Jul 23, 2018 10:38 am
Does anyone know if the Ooma Telo will work with an existing cordless system and its own built-in voicemail?

I have a Uniden cordless system with base unit and voicemail that then goes to 4 cordless phones around the house. So, it would be nice if the Ooma will pass calls to the Uniden voicemail.

Also, can you register your Ooma unit with NomoRobo spam blocking?

TIA!
Yes. We have a 2-cordless phone system. The base will need to be connected to the Ooma device, which in turn, will need to be connected to your modem (unless you go with a wireless model).
Thanks.

Doesn't the Ooma Telo have two connection choices on the back: 1)Home Network 2)Modem?

I planned on connecting the Ooma to the house router which has a couple of unused ethernet ports, since the router is currently connected directly to the modem.

A440
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Re: I think it's time to cut the landline cord, how to do it?

Post by A440 » Mon Jul 23, 2018 5:13 pm

I believe so.
Here is a picture I found on their support site for connections: http://support.ooma.com/office/installa ... tructions/

We don't use a router for our particular set up.

veindoc
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Re: I think it's time to cut the landline cord, how to do it?

Post by veindoc » Sun Jul 29, 2018 7:32 am

My kids were with the babysitter and she had a seizure and became unresponsive. My son age 9 used the landline to call me to cal 911. I wouldn’t get rid of it until the kids had cellphones.

RickBoglehead
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Re: I think it's time to cut the landline cord, how to do it?

Post by RickBoglehead » Sun Jul 29, 2018 8:37 am

veindoc wrote:
Sun Jul 29, 2018 7:32 am
My kids were with the babysitter and she had a seizure and became unresponsive. My son age 9 used the landline to call me to cal 911. I wouldn’t get rid of it until the kids had cellphones.
Multiple options exist for either a cell phone to provide an address to 911, or to use a VOIP phone (which is what Comcast Voice and others are) to call 911.

We use an OBi device (which I would not recommend due to poor company support) and pay $1.50 per month for E911 capabilities. Pick up our "house phone", dial 911, and the dispatcher knows exactly where you are just like a tradition phone line.

MathWizard
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Re: I think it's time to cut the landline cord, how to do it?

Post by MathWizard » Sun Jul 29, 2018 6:52 pm

I went from Vonage to ObiTalk with Google Voice, and switched back within a month.

We could call just fine, but people reported that the could not contact us.

Many have gone completely without a landline, but that is not an option for us. Only a few tried our cell phones.

My wife is the youngest and I'm the 2nd youngest in our respective families.

When I grew up we went from no phone to a party line to a rotary phone hooked to a wall.

My wife's family always had a phone hooked to the wall, and most of the time it was a party line.

Long distance calls were almost never heard of, were as short as possible, and were made after business hours when it was cheaper. A long distance call in the daytime probably meant a death in the family.

It's hard enough to get used to not timing long distance calls.
Going without a landline would effectively cut us off from family.

MathWizard
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Re: I think it's time to cut the landline cord, how to do it?

Post by MathWizard » Sun Jul 29, 2018 6:52 pm

I went from Vonage to ObiTalk with Google Voice, and switched back within a month.

We could call just fine, but people reported that the could not contact us.

Many have gone completely without a landline, but that is not an option for us. Only a few tried our cell phones.

My wife is the youngest and I'm the 2nd youngest in our respective families.

When I grew up we went from no phone to a party line to a rotary phone hooked to a wall.

My wife's family always had a phone hooked to the wall, and most of the time it was a party line.

Long distance calls were almost never heard of, were as short as possible, and were made after business hours when it was cheaper. A long distance call in the daytime probably meant a death in the family.

It's hard enough to get used to not timing long distance calls.
Going without a landline would effectively cut us off from family.

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