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VOIP recommendations after losing landline

Trialbygone
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Registered: ‎24-09-2022

VOIP recommendations after losing landline

We've just lost our landline connection having had unfortunate advice from PN customer service - albeit brilliant advice from @Gandalf who identified the problem and managed to save our number for us (https://community.plus.net/t5/Full-Fibre/FTTP-Problem/td-p/1889790)

But we now need to port the number over urgently to VOIP to save it. Other on the threads seem to suggest sipgate as a reputable supplier but I tried unsuccessfully to contact them, so just wondering if anyone else can recommend a good VOIP service please?
Won't need to make lots of calls on it (although will use some as mobile connection is not great) but will want to receive calls on it, especially from elderly relatives who know the number and like to chat!

The most important thing is that they can save our existing number from PN - don't need lots of fancy additional services (lots of the ones I've managed to find are business VOIP providers), just a simple residential service would be great.

Any recommendations you have would be much appreciated - we've had so much good advice on this board with our initial internet connection problem so I'm hoping that somebody might be able to point us in the right direction.

Cheers!
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14 REPLIES 14
ScottyKernow
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Re: VOIP recommendations after losing landline

Hi

Going back to plustnet I have decided to lose the home number

I know of several people who have ported to sipgate and are happy with the service

Perhaps they are just a bit busy

Best of luck

MisterW
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Re: VOIP recommendations after losing landline

@Trialbygone  whilst a number of us here use  sipgate and their service is good, they  no longer offer their free Basic plan with Payg calls

I use A & A for the office voip system their service and support is excellent. https://www.aa.net.uk/voice-and-mobile/voip-information/  incoming number is £1.20/month and £15 to port your existing number

Payg calls are 1.5p/min landline and 4p/min mobile. 

I also use localphone for outgoing calls ( using the same cli as incoming ) as their call rates are slightly cheaper but dont use them for incoming calls

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Gel
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pjmarsh
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Re: VOIP recommendations after losing landline

I'm a long time Sipgate and LocalPhone user.  I currently have a similar set up to @MisterW, though have in the past used them for incoming calls without a problem.  Slight difference with that though was I bought the number from them (a US number), so no porting of the number involved.  If I remember correctly it wasn't a big monthly cost to have that number.

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dvorak
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Re: VOIP recommendations after losing landline


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shutter
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Re: VOIP recommendations after losing landline

@Trialbygone  Do you just want it as a "landline" phone? service?  or do you also get your internet on the landline ?

MisterW
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Re: VOIP recommendations after losing landline

@shutter I think you've got the wong end of the stick. The OP has migrated internet to FTTP and thus the landline is about to be ceased by PlusNet and thus the landline number will be lost. The OP wants to retain that number by porting it to a voip supplier to continue to be able to make & receive calls using that number

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Trialbygone
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Re: VOIP recommendations after losing landline

Thanks @MisterW, that's it exactly.
I've had fttp for over a decade on the trial and until a fortnight ago it worked brilliantly, when a rare issue (diagnosed by @Gandalf) caused problems. Sadly customer service has moved us to the new fttp service and we can't return to the fttp trial service, so we need a reliable residential VoIP provider. We are happy to stay with PN for our internet service but we do need to keep our landline number, which @Gandalf has managed to stop from being released back into the available pool.
Hence the need for an urgent VoIP service!
shutter
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Re: VOIP recommendations after losing landline

@MisterW   Yup !  could be right there... just asking to make sure.

 

MisterW
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Re: VOIP recommendations after losing landline

@Trialbygone  have you thought about voip equipment ?

Options:-

1) An Analogue telephone adapter(ATA) to enable connection of existing phone or DECT base

2)  router with ATA ports to enable connection of existing phone or DECT base

3) A voip DECT base ( + handsets , although some may work with existing DECT handsets )

4) Dedicated Desk IP Phone ( NB most of these use PoE for power , so you'll probably need a separate PSU )

5) Voip Application on PC or mobile ( not really practical for permanent use for incoming calls )

Note 1,3 & 4 will need to be connected by ethernet cable to existing router

Some voip suppliers may be able to supply preconfigured versions of above, If you're confident with configuring your own, then that gives flexibility to use multiple voip accounts.

Shout up if you need any further info

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Trialbygone
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Re: VOIP recommendations after losing landline

Many thanks @MisterW, it's useful to see all those different options clearly listed out. We will probably use an app as an immediate solution, but rapidly follow up with either a VoIP DECT base or an adapter for an existing DECT base , plus associated handsets...

I just need to find the best supplier now - there seem to be lots of business suppliers, but very few people advertising a simple landline replacent residential offering!
MisterW
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Re: VOIP recommendations after losing landline

@Trialbygone there are certainly more suppliers who seem to be aiming at the business market. Up until recently I think most peoples go to recommendtion for a simple residential cost effective solution, would have been Sipgate basic ( or Starter as they recently called it ). There are a number of people on here, myself included, who've been using it for a while. The recent removal of the Starter product (replaced by a £10/month product) to new customers and the possible removal for existing users next year has caused a rethink!

From a personal POV the suppliers I have experience of are:-

Sipgate - Basic product used for incoming numbers on my home voip ( Gigaset N300 DECT ) - works fine but if/when they start charging £10/m I'll be moving.

Localphone - used for outgoing calls on both my home setup and the office PBX - cheap, works well but never looked at porting numbers to them ( others may have though? )

A & A (aaisp) - used for incoming calls on the office PBX. Ported a block of 20 numbers from ISDN - service works well and support excellent ( one of the few who still provide telephone support )

Zen - the office Broadband is with Zen and initially my aim was to use them for the voip as well. However their voip support was lacking , particularly regarding how their system handled mutiple DID numbers. They will only supply voip to their own BB users anyway.

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markhawkin
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Re: VOIP recommendations after losing landline

@Trialbygone 

I've a SipGate account to experiment with (activated shortly before they stopped doing the "free" accounts) and had they been continuing with that PAYG model, when the time came I would have moved my landline to them.

Instead my landline will probably be going to Andrews & Arnold at the end of my Plusnet contract. 

For simplicity, I'm tempted by taking their DECT base station offer when I do the move.

It is such a shame BT at a corporate level have decided that Plusnet won't offer a phone service.

 

I am the satisfied customer....
Trialbygone
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Re: VOIP recommendations after losing landline

Many thanks for all the suggestions - much appreciated. I've been waylaid by a nasty bug but thought I'd now drop back to say thanks and leave a quick update in case it's of use to anyone else going through something similar.

We ended up going with a&a (Andrews & Arnold - aa.net.uk) - seemed to be one of the cheapest but good reviews and recommendations and very helpful people on the support line, plus if you buy kit from them, they will configure it for you before sending it out, which saved one extra concern when we were doing this in a hurry. Their downside - the website wasn't very usable and they're not set up for internet payments - you get half way through the forms, then have to go off and make a payment using online banking , then come back and tick to say that you've done this, which it then appears to verify, before moving on to finish the setup. Felt like the site needed a good overhaul, a much more legible font and a nice 'Pay now' button to drag it into the 21st century!

We had an email in advance to let us know when the transfer was going to take place from 10am, then on the day the old phone rang a few times, just for one ring, wasn't ever able to catch it quickly enough to answer, but it was all done before 4pm, and we are now able to make and receive calls from our number. We still have a dial tone on the old copper connection if we try the old handset.

The other company we seriously considered having had good recommendations was Voipfone, the website was much clearer, but the predicted timescales were longer and they worked out nearly twice the price of using a&a.

Thanks again to everyone here who helped - having fallen through the rabbit hole and not knowing what was going on or where to start, your help meant we were able to save our number and get a landline replacement sorted without too many headaches!