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Switching Your Residential Phone Service To VoIP

Title:

Switching Your Residential Phone Service To VoIP

Word Count:

500

Summary:

If you're considering changing your residential phone service to Voice Over IP, or VOIP service, there are several steps in the process, and thinking and acting carefully during each step can make the process run much more smoothly and avoid headaches both during the installation and later on in your service period.

First, it's important to choose a VOIP provider carefully. There are three major providers who offer VOIP in most areas: Vonage, Sunrocket, and Comcast. All th...

Keywords:

residential voip,voip telephones

Article Body:

If you're considering changing your residential phone service to Voice Over IP, or VOIP service, there are several steps in the process, and thinking and acting carefully during each step can make the process run much more smoothly and avoid headaches both during the installation and later on in your service period.

First, it's important to choose a VOIP provider carefully. There are three major providers who offer VOIP in most areas: Vonage, Sunrocket, and Comcast. All three are well-known, and each has different plans and services.

When looking for a provider, you should look first a the quality of their offerings. The best way to determine whether the provider you're considering has a good record in your area is to get online and look for complaints and critical web sites and blog postings. Of course, these must be taken with a grain of salt; not everyone will be happy with every provider. But you can certainly make a good judgment as to whether a provider has an unreasonable number of complaints by doing a web search.

Support is the next important factor to consider in choosing a provider. Again, checking web sites for complaints is a good way to gauge the quality of a provider's support. Another way to measure customer support is to send a pre-sales support request. While some providers handle these support requests better than their actual customer requests, in general this is a good way to see how they deal with customers.

Finally, in choosing a provider, you will want to look at features and options. If it is important to you to keep your existing phones and have more than one phone in your home, make sure the provider you are considering allows for that. If you want to check your voicemail online and get email notification of new emails, choose a provider with that service.

The best way to make sure you get the features you want is to find out what features are available from all the providers, which may include some you have not thought of, and determine which are the most important and which you could live without.

Once you're comfortable with the provider you've chosen, your next step will be installation.

Most providers will send someone out to install the equipment and set up your VOIP service. If you're doing it yourself, they should provide the equipment and instructions.

If you are purchasing or leasing phone equipment, familiarize yourself with it as soon as it arrives.

Next, you'll want to check all the features once your phone is installed to make sure everything is working as promised.

Your very last step in switching to VOIP will be to study the manual and learn how to use the many features of your VOIP service, from blocking calls to checking messages and asking for help from your provider.

Switching to VOIP can seem like a big move, but if taken step by step, it can be very easy and relatively painless.