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#10420 by Pandora
Thu May 28, 2009 1:56 pm
I don't know if call screening should be a premium or basic feature.

I know Ooma provides long distance, and incoming phone number and 911 at no charge per month. That is all I really need.

An answering machine capability is icing on the cake. If Ooma wants to charge for some answering machine features, its OK with me.
#10423 by scottlindner
Thu May 28, 2009 4:13 pm
Alot people that like to be negative and not read posts. Go back and use that little scroll wheel on your mouse and learn that you've really really overacted and jumped to incorrect conclusions that were already discussed!

Talk about unfriendly crowd. You do realize that people read these forums before buying? If you're an unfriendly lot.. Ooma might not make it. Be wise....
#10568 by CloaknDagr
Sun May 31, 2009 3:52 pm
WayneDsr wrote:I don't understand. FREE Local Calling, Free Long Distance, Free Call waiting, FREE Caller ID and Free basic voicemail.

Where is that not at good deal?
I guess I've paid the phone company longer than most here, because all that free stuff alone is enough for me to consider ooma to be the best deal any way you look at it.
The cost of Premier to get all those little extras is STILL almost what I used to pay a month for oomas core features from AT&T.

Wayne


I agree with Wayne here. Use your own answering machine and you still have the same thing you had before Ooma. If you set Ooma voice mail to pick up at max time (59 Seconds) then if someone is leaving a message and you get a call, and the original message is longer than 60 seconds the second message will shift to Ooma voice mail. If you don't have a scout or a hub where you can see the blinking light, that's your bust not Ooma's. You get two answering machines for the price of one and I can't think of any other free system that will let someone leave you a message WHILE someone else is also leaving you a message.

I'm pretty sure if you can afford a racked network and server system that's out of view you can afford $8 a month for fully integrated phone services. If you're technically savvy enough to set that up, I bet you can figure out a way to monitor a blinking light.

As far as the free services go, I think Ooma is offering PLENTY. We ALL want them to stay in business and keep this system working. If what they offer isn't enough for your needs, the cost of Premier is way past reasonable. I was paying AT&T over $65 a month for one primary number, almost $90 for my two line system. I have no problem at all paying Ooma for an annual Premier subscription, it's only $9 more than my previous monthly bill. If we who need this kind of service pay for Premier then Ooma will be a healthier company and around a lot longer, able to upgrade and improve because they can afford it. If you don't want it or don't need Premier then there are work-around solutions you can implement and get free telephone service comparable to the land-line POTS bloodsuckers.

My point is, you have to give Ooma some wiggle room. This is what they offer, this is what you accepted. I'm very happy with the situation. You're really getting something for almost nothing. If you deduct the cost of the core system from what your previous telephone bill was, you're actually getting paid to get something for nothing. It's unreasonable to expect to get everything for nothing.
#10569 by CloaknDagr
Sun May 31, 2009 4:11 pm
scottlindner wrote:
pl1 wrote:If you set the number of rings in the lounge to a higher number than your answering machine, the answering machine will pickup first. Otherwise, the setup is identical to a regular phone service.

Preferences> Voice Mail> change from the default of 4 rings to 59 seconds. That should let your answering machine pick up (if that's the problem).

Or, does your answering machine not have that option? To listen in as the call comes in?


That isn't a solution. See my other post about that. Definitely not a solution at all. Don't recommend that to anyone. It's bad.

http://forums.ooma.com/viewtopic.php?f=6&t=1687&hilit=answering+machine

(Your point on that link, in case people want to read it here instead of going to that thread, is:

"I am one of the unusual types that plans on installing my Ooma Hub in my network rack. I'll never see it." )


Scott



Like I said in the above post:
I'm pretty sure if you can afford a racked network and server system that's out of view you can afford $8 a month for fully integrated phone services. If you're technically savvy enough to set that up, I bet you can figure out a way to monitor a blinking light.

So let me guess, you hide your regular answering machine so you can't see that and turn off all the lights on it too?

You're expecting a little $250 device to perform like a VOIP PBX or what? Here's some flash traffic for you, that's not a reasonable expectation. With Premier though, you can come awfully close if you work at it, see my post on multiline systems if you want to know how.

It IS a solution and a good one for the huge majority of the people in these forums. You could obviously solve your problem if you wanted to do it your self and in the post you linked to you said you were going to use Premier anyway, so I gotta think you're just agitating.

Your real problem isn't Ooma, it's knowing when a light is blinking, Ooma is serving you just fine. Solve that issue and you've got everything you want for free. I'll solve it for you, for my standard rate at a 2 hour minimum. It would be a LOT cheaper for you to just buy Premier.
#10571 by scottlindner
Sun May 31, 2009 4:47 pm
See my previous post guys. If Ooma has too many critical jerks in the community, the negative community will not be good PR.
#10578 by niknak
Sun May 31, 2009 7:09 pm
"...I am one of the unusual types that plans on installing my Ooma Hub in my network rack. I'll never see it..."


I have my hub buried in the basement near the FIOS demarc
I use the scout attached to a wall plug in the living room to retrieve messages
#10581 by Groundhound
Sun May 31, 2009 8:20 pm
scots wrote:For everyone who's saying it should be free because it's a "basic" feature:

If it's so basic, then why does no other VoIP provider offer this? Why don't traditional phone companies offer this with their voicemail? Actually, you can't even get voicemail at all from a traditional phone company without paying a monthly fee. I see nothing wrong with offering it as part of the Premier package.

Agreed. Ooma makes it clear that their plan to make money is based upon the ability to sell Premier: https://www.ooma.com/company/how_we_make_money.php. They soft-sell the idea that the free service is OK, but if you apply just a bit of logic and realize that connecting outbound calls has some small cost for them, then at some point the profit they make on the equipment is exceeded by that cost, and the free user becomes a losing account for ooma. They've accepted that risk with the gamble that they will entice more users to the Premier service. If they're right they will survive, if not they won't. Adding features to Premier makes far more sense than adding them to the free service, especially a residential service that is pretty much exclusive to ooma like call screening of voice mail.
#10584 by southsound
Sun May 31, 2009 10:18 pm
ooma offers a lot of features in the base package. And some will find the Premier offering (with call screening, do not disturb, the instant second line plus others) to meet their needs and still offer a real bargain over other providers. Although the choice is yours, I think that ooma has several things going for it that will cause it to be wildly successful.

First, the hardware is well designed and can be updated from a central server. It has the horsepower to do what it needs to do and do it well - plus I'm sure we will find new features as time goes on.

Second, it has a great (revised) business model. They make enough money on the initial purchase to cover the life of the product. But they also make money on incoming calls. So even if a person chooses not to upgrade to Premier, the company does OK.

Third, they have absolutely stellar people. When I first had my system things worked well. Then I went on a two day vacation and things went to heck in a handbasket. I called. I documented the problem. I was persistent. But so were they. I received many calls from their senior technical people wanting to fix the problems. I even received a number of personal calls from Rich Buchanan their Chief Marketing Officer. Surprising since I only had spent about $220 for the ooma system at Costco. But they cared enough to make sure my ooma experience was a positive one.

It makes me very happy that I've been able to take advantage of such a great service and I'm sure they will not only survive but will prosper in a time when people are looking for real value.
#10659 by scottlindner
Tue Jun 02, 2009 3:51 am
The point that frustrates people with Call Screening being a Premier option is the built in answering machine is not an option. If a user could turn off the answering system, that would make it an option. Then the entire VM feature would be a great candidate for Premier. Screening your calls is a basic feature of any answering machine. Changing the answer time in the Ooma Lounge to max isn't viable if you want to use an answering machine other than Ooma. You'll miss messages that way. This has all been said in this thread already. I'm just summarizing it.

Until Ooma makes the answering capability an option, new users will always feel bilked that screening the answering capability is a loss compared to the answering machine they already have.

Some people just want a phone line. They don't care about all of the neat features of Ooma. If you ostracize and criticize people that just want a phone line, you are putting off the largest segment of phone users in the nation.

Cheers,
Scott

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