Ooma Phone Service - I Do NOT Recommend

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southbay
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Ooma Phone Service - I Do NOT Recommend

Post by southbay » Thu Dec 31, 2015 4:34 pm

I had previously recommended the Ooma phone service on this forum.

I've been a customer for 5 years and had no issues...until today when I tried to cancel the service. I just don't use it at all anymore and don't need it.

First there is no way to cancel or disable the service in your account. You must contact Ooma to cancel. I contact them online, they tell me to call them to cancel. I call and get the run-around and asked why I am canceling and I get transferred. After about a half hour of my life wasted, the guy reluctantly cancels my service only after keeping me on hold for quite a while as he "processes the cancellation".

I'm still not convinced I am totally cancelled and I won't be surprised to see their charge on my bill next month. In that case, it will be more time wasted calling my bank to reverse the charge.

This company clearly has a policy of making cancellations difficult, and if you search online you'll see many stories of difficult cancellations.

If you need to cancel Ooma I would just call your credit card company and tell them to block any charges from Ooma. I should have done this from the beginning. I had a suspicion they would be difficult.

I will never again use Ooma. Never. I do NOT recommend you use this company. I do not support any company that treats customers leaving like this.

Leeraar
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Re: Ooma Phone Service - I Do NOT Recommend

Post by Leeraar » Thu Dec 31, 2015 4:48 pm

You could add stamps.com to this list of shame.

L.
You can get what you want, or you can just get old. (Billy Joel, "Vienna")

southbay
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Re: Ooma Phone Service - I Do NOT Recommend

Post by southbay » Thu Dec 31, 2015 5:00 pm

even though i canceled, i just checked and my Ooma account online still shows as active. now i really hate Ooma. maybe it just takes a while to update...but i doubt it.

i was going to donate my old ooma device, but i see they charge an absurd reactivation fee and the service is impossible to cancel.

instead, i just took a hammer to it, so nobody else will suffer the same fate. it felt great. :beer

Jags4186
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Re: Ooma Phone Service - I Do NOT Recommend

Post by Jags4186 » Thu Dec 31, 2015 5:04 pm

southbay wrote:I had previously recommended the Ooma phone service on this forum.
If you need to cancel Ooma I would just call your credit card company and tell them to block any charges from Ooma. I should have done this from the beginning. I had a suspicion they would be difficult.
I highly recommend against this course of action. While I cannot speak specifically on Ooma, by preventing the company from charging your credit card does not mean they aren't racking up a bill against your account. They will just send you to collections for what you haven't paid and then you're stuck dealing with that.

I had a difficult time cancelling a New York Sports Club membership (kept saying it was cancelled, kept getting charged). I informed Chase that the charges were not authorized and to not process any more charges. About 6 months later I got a letter from collections for 6 months of unpaid bills + collections fees. Talk about a difficult time getting this removed--had to write to the state attorney general and everything.

southbay
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Re: Ooma Phone Service - I Do NOT Recommend

Post by southbay » Thu Dec 31, 2015 5:07 pm

Jags4186 wrote:
southbay wrote:I had previously recommended the Ooma phone service on this forum.
If you need to cancel Ooma I would just call your credit card company and tell them to block any charges from Ooma. I should have done this from the beginning. I had a suspicion they would be difficult.
I highly recommend against this course of action. While I cannot speak specifically on Ooma, by preventing the company from charging your credit card does not mean they aren't racking up a bill against your account. They will just send you to collections for what you haven't paid and then you're stuck dealing with that.

I had a difficult time cancelling a New York Sports Club membership (kept saying it was cancelled, kept getting charged). I informed Chase that the charges were not authorized and to not process any more charges. About 6 months later I got a letter from collections for 6 months of unpaid bills + collections fees. Talk about a difficult time getting this removed--had to write to the state attorney general and everything.
true. i suppose you should formally cancel. or at least notify them you're canceling and document it somehow.

i have canceled it, but i have not warm and fuzzy feeling that they actually canceled it.

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David Jay
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Re: Ooma Phone Service - I Do NOT Recommend

Post by David Jay » Thu Dec 31, 2015 5:11 pm

Any chance you just got bad service because it is New Years Eve and they are understaffed?
Prediction is very difficult, especially about the future - Niels Bohr | To get the "risk premium", you really do have to take the risk - nisiprius

hicabob
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Re: Ooma Phone Service - I Do NOT Recommend

Post by hicabob » Thu Dec 31, 2015 5:13 pm

As an Ooma alternative I've found an Obihai voip box combined with google voice is amazingly good for the cost , after you buy the $50 box it's free to call in the US, cheap to other countries. You supply the broadband and plug your regular phone into the little box. Sound quality is excellent, features are excellent and no monthly fee at all.
http://www.amazon.com/OBi200-VoIP-Phone ... rds=obihai

southbay
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Re: Ooma Phone Service - I Do NOT Recommend

Post by southbay » Thu Dec 31, 2015 5:13 pm

David Jay wrote:Any chance you just got bad service because it is New Years Eve and they are understaffed?
not a chance. i searched online and found many, many, stories about how hard it is to cancel.

Leeraar
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Re: Ooma Phone Service - I Do NOT Recommend

Post by Leeraar » Thu Dec 31, 2015 5:15 pm

hicabob wrote:As an Ooma alternative I've found an Obihai voip box combined with google voice is amazingly good for the cost , after you buy the $50 box it's free to call in the US, cheap to other countries. You supply the broadband and plug your regular phone into the little box. Sound quality is excellent, features are excellent and no monthly fee at all.
http://www.amazon.com/OBi200-VoIP-Phone ... rds=obihai
I sort of get it, but why not just Skype?

L.
You can get what you want, or you can just get old. (Billy Joel, "Vienna")

jeff1949
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Re: Ooma Phone Service - I Do NOT Recommend

Post by jeff1949 » Thu Dec 31, 2015 5:23 pm

southbay wrote:even though i canceled, i just checked and my Ooma account online still shows as active. now i really hate Ooma. maybe it just takes a while to update...but i doubt it.

i was going to donate my old ooma device, but i see they charge an absurd reactivation fee and the service is impossible to cancel.

instead, i just took a hammer to it, so nobody else will suffer the same fate. it felt great. :beer
As a current Ooma user thanks for the "heads up" on that. I have been fairly happy with the service so far but it's nice to know what a hassle I probably will be faced with one day.

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TheGreyingDuke
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Re: Ooma Phone Service - I Do NOT Recommend

Post by TheGreyingDuke » Thu Dec 31, 2015 5:49 pm

Leeraar wrote: I sort of get it, but why not just Skype?

L.
Because with Skype you need to be in front of a computer or other non-standard device.
"Every time I see an adult on a bicycle, I no longer despair for the future of the human race." H.G. Wells

Leeraar
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Re: Ooma Phone Service - I Do NOT Recommend

Post by Leeraar » Thu Dec 31, 2015 5:52 pm

TheGreyingDuke wrote:
Leeraar wrote: I sort of get it, but why not just Skype?

L.
Because with Skype you need to be in front of a computer or other non-standard device.
No,

I can Skype the world from my cell phone.

L.
You can get what you want, or you can just get old. (Billy Joel, "Vienna")

southbay
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Re: Ooma Phone Service - I Do NOT Recommend

Post by southbay » Thu Dec 31, 2015 5:55 pm

Leeraar wrote:
TheGreyingDuke wrote:
Leeraar wrote: I sort of get it, but why not just Skype?

L.
Because with Skype you need to be in front of a computer or other non-standard device.
No,

I can Skype the world from my cell phone.

L.
yes, with skype you need to use your cell phone or computer.

a voip device is on 24-7 and you can use any phone with it. it's just like having a landline.

playtothebeat
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Re: Ooma Phone Service - I Do NOT Recommend

Post by playtothebeat » Thu Dec 31, 2015 6:59 pm

southbay wrote:
a voip device is on 24-7 and you can use any phone with it. it's just like having a landline.
.. Unless your internet goes out, correct? If I'm not mistaken, VoIP phones do not work if your internet connection fails - as such, in an emergency (say, flood, earthquake, etc) when it's quite possible for Internet lines to be damaged, you may not be able to dial out to emergency services if necessary. Correct me if I'm wrong, but that was always my understanding (and one of the reasons - along with a terrible cell phone reception at home - why I still have a true landline at the house)

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David Jay
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Re: Ooma Phone Service - I Do NOT Recommend

Post by David Jay » Thu Dec 31, 2015 7:14 pm

Long time Ooma user. Love that $3.78 per month price (in Michigan, varies by state because of taxes) for "home" phone service.
Prediction is very difficult, especially about the future - Niels Bohr | To get the "risk premium", you really do have to take the risk - nisiprius

artibug
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Re: Ooma Phone Service - I Do NOT Recommend

Post by artibug » Thu Dec 31, 2015 7:44 pm

I second Obihai and google voice. I have used that combo for home "landline" for 2 years. No issue. Plus you can add 911 service to it so you can call 911 in emergency unlike cellphone call to 911 may not connect you to your local emergency dispatcher. There is no "true landline" in many places anymore. All the phone company's landline services are basically voip, connected to your cable or internet service. Too expensive for them to maintain landlines when most people now don't have home phone services. I remember reading an article on WSJ couple years ago about this. If I can find that article again, I will post the link to reference it. Also, nothing beats FREE for me personally for something that I have as a "backup" to my cell service. :greedy

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Boglenaut
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Re: Ooma Phone Service - I Do NOT Recommend

Post by Boglenaut » Thu Dec 31, 2015 8:09 pm

I tried Ooma about 5 years ago. It just did not have the quality I needed -- always a delay that made conversations awkward.

I really wanted it to work and exhausted all technical options. So I cancelled. They gave me a hard sell ("You will not be able to re-activate except with a big fee."), but they did cancel it and I got my money back from Costco with no problem.

I had an easy-to-remember number and hated losing it.

IowaFarmBoy
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Re: Ooma Phone Service - I Do NOT Recommend

Post by IowaFarmBoy » Thu Dec 31, 2015 8:13 pm

The previous comment about VOIP not working in a power outage is true (unless you have backups on your modem, router and VOIP box, or whichever of these your configuration requires.) We just got power back on today after three days off and our Ooma service was down because we couldn't power it or our internet. But our cells were up so we had connections.

Regarding the Ooma discussion. We are users and have been happy with it. This sounds more like a bad customer service issue than an underlying problem with their service. As I understand, the roughly $4/month we pay is all for taxes. They make some money from selling the device up front and I think they may get some money from connection fees (not sure what the correct name is for that) for the other phone carriers. They are cheap and I think it shows in their customer service.

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Watty
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Re: Ooma Phone Service - I Do NOT Recommend

Post by Watty » Thu Dec 31, 2015 8:31 pm

To avoid run arounds like this I have simply told companies that I want it cancelled because I am moving out of the country.

That ends the discussion then it is in their best interest to get you off the phone as possible.

danaht
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Re: Ooma Phone Service - I Do NOT Recommend

Post by danaht » Thu Dec 31, 2015 8:39 pm

I am a long time OOMA customer. I am happy with the service. For what we pay - it's more than paid for any hassle - if I ever do decide to cancel. OOMA has probably saved me thousands of dollars - so no complaints here! Alternatives like Vonage are so much more expensive.

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Re: Ooma Phone Service - I Do NOT Recommend

Post by travellight » Thu Dec 31, 2015 10:23 pm

I had a bad experience with Magic Jack as well. So glad I discovered Google voice and I was able to save/port my phone number. I'll look into obihai.

Polymath
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Re: Ooma Phone Service - I Do NOT Recommend

Post by Polymath » Thu Dec 31, 2015 10:32 pm

Also a happy Ooma customer. I have the original hub, so pay nothing, its been great.
I suppose if do choose to "cancel" they will process me quickly as right now they eat the service charge from me being on the original hardware.

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SpringMan
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Re: Ooma Phone Service - I Do NOT Recommend

Post by SpringMan » Thu Dec 31, 2015 10:35 pm

Clark Howard recommends Ooma for landline replacement. Chances are he never tried to quit their service. Maybe the problem was the shortage of holiday help or the storms in parts of the country.
Best Wishes, SpringMan

SpaceCowboy
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Re: Ooma Phone Service - I Do NOT Recommend

Post by SpaceCowboy » Thu Dec 31, 2015 10:56 pm

I'm curious if people have had any issues porting their number out of Ooma.
I have the original hub and never ported my number to them because I was worried about this.

southbay
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Re: Ooma Phone Service - I Do NOT Recommend

Post by southbay » Thu Dec 31, 2015 11:47 pm

SpringMan wrote:Clark Howard recommends Ooma for landline replacement. Chances are he never tried to quit their service. Maybe the problem was the shortage of holiday help or the storms in parts of the country.
All their support seemed to be overseas from what I could tell. That part did not bother me.

southbay
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Re: Ooma Phone Service - I Do NOT Recommend

Post by southbay » Thu Dec 31, 2015 11:52 pm

Polymath wrote:Also a happy Ooma customer. I have the original hub, so pay nothing, its been great.
I suppose if do choose to "cancel" they will process me quickly as right now they eat the service charge from me being on the original hardware.
I was on a "free" plan also. Just paid monthly tax/fee. I think they want customers on the books no matter how little they currently pay.

They also threatened me not to sell my Ooma device on Ebay or Amazon etc.. He went on about that and I had to cut him off a couple times. Really annoying experience.

southbay
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Re: Ooma Phone Service - I Do NOT Recommend

Post by southbay » Thu Dec 31, 2015 11:52 pm

on a positive note...

HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!

cbeck
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Re: Ooma Phone Service - I Do NOT Recommend

Post by cbeck » Fri Jan 01, 2016 12:21 am

rrppve wrote:I'm curious if people have had any issues porting their number out of Ooma.
I have the original hub and never ported my number to them because I was worried about this.
Ooma ported my number back in 2008. Don't remember how long it took, but it was completely painless. Before the switch your ooma supports incoming and outgoing on the new number. Then one day you notice your landline is dead and ooma answers on your landline number.

I still have the original Ooma and so pay nothing for service each month. It works fine here in Bangkok where quality is better than skype.

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Re: Ooma Phone Service - I Do NOT Recommend

Post by whonoze » Fri Jan 01, 2016 12:31 am

I also have an Obi device, and I use voip.ms.
We have a 2-line telephone, but you only need 1 number from voip.ms, and you can use either line.
Call quality is almost as good as copper line, tech support is Canadian based, very friendly and competent.
Price is unbeatable.
I highly recommend.
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LifeIsGood
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Re: Ooma Phone Service - I Do NOT Recommend

Post by LifeIsGood » Sat Jan 02, 2016 7:05 am

I was a long time happy OOMA customer but when they stopped providing caller ID with the basic service I changed my tune. I would have to pay $10/month for their premium service in order to get this benefit back. I may consider switching too.
Has anyone ported their number OUT of OOMA? How did it go?

Polymath
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Re: Ooma Phone Service - I Do NOT Recommend

Post by Polymath » Sat Jan 02, 2016 10:33 am

southbay wrote:
Polymath wrote:Also a happy Ooma customer. I have the original hub, so pay nothing, its been great.
I suppose if do choose to "cancel" they will process me quickly as right now they eat the service charge from me being on the original hardware.
I was on a "free" plan also. Just paid monthly tax/fee. I think they want customers on the books no matter how little they currently pay.

They also threatened me not to sell my Ooma device on Ebay or Amazon etc.. He went on about that and I had to cut him off a couple times. Really annoying experience.
As an early adopter, I don't have to pay anything. No taxes or fees for 911 for example, that all comes from Ooma in the background for me. After about 2 years (guessing) Ooma changed their plan to require customers to cover those fees. We however were grand fathered in.

I'm not opposed to paying the fee when the time comes to upgrade the HW. There has just been nothing in the more recent HW offerings that got me excited enough to upgrade. Maybe they will have something at CES this year.

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Boglenaut
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Re: Ooma Phone Service - I Do NOT Recommend

Post by Boglenaut » Sat Jan 02, 2016 11:25 am

As I mentioned above, I tried Ooma but it did not work well for me.

So I get phone as part of my Internet bundle. $46/mo after fees and taxes for VOIP and 15/1 mbps internet, so really very cheap phone.

One feature I really REALLY like is my cable company supports NoMoRobo (https://www.nomorobo.com/)

Does Ooma support NoMoRobo?

jjface
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Re: Ooma Phone Service - I Do NOT Recommend

Post by jjface » Sat Jan 02, 2016 11:49 am

Happy ooma customer here. Not sure if I'd be unhappy if I cancelled but I am so happy I am not planning to!

But yes I usually avoid companies that do not have an easy cancel me button on their website to end it without hassle. If you have to call that is a big no to me - a sign of trouble to come.

southbay
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Re: Ooma Phone Service - I Do NOT Recommend

Post by southbay » Sat Jan 02, 2016 1:05 pm

jjface wrote:Happy ooma customer here. Not sure if I'd be unhappy if I cancelled but I am so happy I am not planning to!

But yes I usually avoid companies that do not have an easy cancel me button on their website to end it without hassle. If you have to call that is a big no to me - a sign of trouble to come.
not only is there no way to cancel online, you cannot cancel it over a live chat or email (i tried). i generally don't like calling businesses when i have some issue i need solved, and find it is faster and easier to just fire off an email.

you have to call and request the cancellations department, but first suffer through some sale pitches to stay with Ooma, then, when you get finally get transferred to cancellations, and the rep finally agrees to actually cancel your service, they'll leave you on hold for several minutes as they "process your cancellation", and offer a final sales pitch to stay, of course.

it just hate companies like this, that have clearly thought out an evil little plan to make it hard to cancel.

i had to just sit there like a broken record repeating that i just wanted to cancel the service.

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digarei
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Re: Ooma Phone Service - I Do NOT Recommend

Post by digarei » Sat Jan 02, 2016 2:05 pm

I have no experience with Ooma but certainly relate to how difficult it is to cancel anything that regularly appears as a charge to my bank balance.

Customer service with any large entity is at best uneven. Phone and cable TV companies have forever operated on a subscription basis. Try to reduce your cable bill without one (or many) extended phone calls!

Increasingly, products and services that were at one time made available and advertised for purchase are now marketed as subscriptions. Terrific for companies who wish to increase revenue; for consumers, not so much. A long time ago I came perilously close to signing up for "discount" film delivery (until I calculated that I would have had to take about 4000 photographs every year to make the service worthwhile). Later, I heard that it was nearly impossible to get the company to stop the service.

Microsoft is anxious for me to pay a subscription fee to use Office products but I know how that works only too well from past experience with other companies: the recurring charges billed by conniving operators who deliver electricity, fuel, perishables, software updates never end... or, at least, that's the aim of the companies.

If this model becomes the standard for all services, woe to the consumer.
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