Problems using My Ooma? Ideas on how we can make it better? You’ve come to the right place.
#58973 by jfl
Tue Jun 29, 2010 7:13 pm
I agree that Ooma has some very innovative features. I especially like the call blocking capability. And, I don't hate Ooma (I mean, I do own their products,) I just don't like nickle-and-diming and overcharging for simple features.

I think it is OK that you don't mind paying $30 for the BT dongle. My point is that others have a different opinion and I happen to agree with that different point of view.

My point about what I am assuming is a proprietary Ooma dongle is that they are grossly overcharging for a feature that is built into their base station and which would be or used to be normally accessible with a generic dongle capable of supporting the typical 7 paired devices. I'm guessing that it may also limit the number of BT devices that are pairable with it. Most dongles only cost about $10 and are universally applicable to BT enable devices, not restricted to one vendor's devices. So, you pay much more for less - this is called greed and it is misbehavior, but it has become so commonplace in American business that most folks fail to recognize it.

With regard to customer service: I had two handsets with identical problems maintaining power and instantly draining (i.e. very likely an internal short which leaves Ooma open to serious safety liability) unless they were very carefully placed in their cradles yet I cannot find anything on this site regarding the issue and CS merely suggested making sure that the contacts were properly seated on the base. Not constructive advice. The build quality appears to be OK, although not cutting edge and very poor speakerphone implementation, but the technology for reliably charging Li-Ion batteries is very well developed and should never present the problems I encountered. I've returned one handset to the retailer and cannot really achieve full utilization of the Ooma Premier services without keeping one Ooma handset.

These are big problems for a company to whom I've given my vote. They seem very "seat-of-the-pants" but I still hope they're successful. They offer some very attractive features at the premier level that their competition doesn't offer at all. In my opinion, they are risking turning off new customers by making misguided service and equipment decisions which, when existing customers post comments like these, will serve to hurt their credibility. Again, typical short-sighted American business forgetting that each unhappy customer likely loses them 10 future sales.

Lastly, criticism needn't always be taken negatively - Ooma is hopefully reading their own bulletin boards and they should be able to learn something from their customers. So, stop defending Ooma when they are criticized just because you don't happen to agree with what's been said. I am a customer with a legitimate complaint and they're big boys and girls - they can either fix the issues or pay the consequences. If everything was always perfect there would be no need for this site to exist, now, would there?

Soapbox just shattered into pieces...............
#58979 by lbmofo
Tue Jun 29, 2010 8:02 pm
jfl wrote:In my opinion, they are risking turning off new customers by making misguided service and equipment decisions which, when existing customers post comments like these, will serve to hurt their credibility. Again, typical short-sighted American business forgetting that each unhappy customer likely loses them 10 future sales.

Not if "unhappy" customers are being unreasonable. Do you realize what kind of support headache it would bring ooma if ooma allowed generic bluetooth adapters? What version? 1.1 or 1.2 or other? What kind of services are enabled? Do you know how much more complex the firmware code would have to be to account for all these possible variations of adapters?

On making it available only to Premier, if you were ooma, would you be spending all your time and effort implementing features for both basic and Premier? Or would you try to make Premier more attractive so more folks would sign up to Premier? Free home phone serive with free US calls, call waiting, caller id, voicemail, 911 ought to be enough to attract the basic service customers. Why is it "greed" and "misbehavior" if ooma doesn't add more features to the basic service? On the contrary, I think it is "greed" and "misbehavior" for basic service customers to feel entitled to more features for free.

jfl wrote:So, stop defending Ooma when they are criticized just because you don't happen to agree with what's been said. I am a customer with a legitimate complaint and they're big boys and girls - they can either fix the issues or pay the consequences. If everything was always perfect there would be no need for this site to exist, now, would there?

So, you are saying if you post your "legitimate" complaints here, those that have opposing views (must not be legit because they contradict yours) should not provide input? I like your thinking because I like how they do things over there on the other side of the world. 中华人民共和国万岁!!!
#59049 by philw132
Wed Jun 30, 2010 5:16 pm
jfl,

I don't completely agree with your statement. As far as I understand bluetooth is not a standard home phone function. I have not seen any major phone company's in my area integrate this feature. At&t,Comcast cable,Cox cable. If you don't want to pay a one time fee of what 30 bucks? no problem, buy a phone system like I have, VTECH 5 handset system, bluetooth integrated. It has nothing to do with ooma, ooma telo or ooma handset..... they are pretty cheap at costco i believe, less then 100 bucks. or bestbuy has a device that links bluetooth stand alone for less then 80. do some research you would not believe the devices that are out there.. but ooma is offering a bluetooth method that is cheaper then ANY other device out there.. the ooma forums are swarming with complaints about this and i just don't understand why because its a great feature, it works great and the best part is you are not forced to buy it, if you don't want it. don't click the "order" button.
as far as you saying that I've "criticize" people. I don't see that has any relevants to this thread.
and no, I'm not crazy about the apple products even tho they are built on a stripped down flavor of Unix and I am fully devoted Linux user, because as I'm sure you already know Linux is a "grown-up" Unix. I just never cared for the "basic" aspect of the machines/phones. I want function not flash. I have a Blackberry Bold connecting me to my company using the Blackberry enterprise server and being the IT and needing to provide support both verbal and hands on with all the staff in the US based locations as well as locations in 3 other countrys it works perfectly for me, but I don't see what cellphones have to do with VOIP home based services.

You say customer service is garbage, I completely agree 10000 percent. however I have found BobbyB on the forum to be a very responsive contact. he emailed me within an hour about an issue i had, and was able to give me very detailed information. if you use the resources at your fingertips I'm sure your experiences will be much more pleasant.


jfl wrote:I'm a Premiere subscriber and have the same issue with Ooma's misbehavior that Morpheus has - I have to buy a proprietary Bluetooth dongle from Ooma to use devices I already own. For Phil123 (or whatever your name is) to criticize others for a valid complaint is childish (do you also own an Apple iPhone 4 already?) Bottom line is that Bluetooth is a proprietary technology and most computers and other hardware simply require a generic dongle to enable the service. Ooma is behaving very much like Apple. I am starting to regret signing up for my premiere account and porting my number over to Ooma as I already own Bluetooth dongles (3 or 4 generic ones) that work just fine in every other capable device EXCEPT my Telo base. Ooma should lose this one. And, they better start paying attention because their handsets have proven unreliable and their customer service is very like Dell computer's - i.e. not very much service.

Majority opinion is frequently poorly founded. Look at our government for another example.
#59050 by philw132
Wed Jun 30, 2010 5:29 pm
i am not advertising ooma do not take it as such but here is an example of a bluetooth device, 79.99 for this, or the 29.99 for ooma's bluetooth option? hmm.......

http://www.bestbuy.com/site/Xtreme+Tech ... 8087017777
#59160 by jfl
Fri Jul 02, 2010 6:20 pm
OK, Phil132, I agree with some of your points. I am not familiar enough with BT communication protocols to understand why they would be more difficult with a phone versus mouse or keyboard, so, I can''t argue the technical issue. It would be a reasonable thing for Ooma to enable BT capability with current protocols as many features are backward compatible.

Anyway, it's clear that if I want the BT capability I'll either by Ooma's button or I'll take your suggestion and buy another brand of handset.

A bit of humor for the other responder about folks arguing. The earth is round, so, talking about the other side of the world doesn't make sense if you think about it a little bit. All I'm saying is that Ooma is capable of defending their own actions and I'd like to see them get a bit more involved in their boards rather than having "fanbois" jump to their defense. I have signed up for Premier because I like the features. I'd like them better if I could use the technology that is already enabled on their hardware (e.g. BT with a generic dongle) as the originator of this thread suggested he should have also been able to continue doing. Continuing to "add" features by deactivating them and then offering to sell them to you is very bad business policy even if you think it is OK. It will cost Ooma business and if they lose enough then we all lose. They need to wise up.

I guess we can agree to disagree on this. I've got more serious problems with my Telo handset anyway as I can't seem to keep it from randomly instantaneously discharging the battery when I hang it up. There should be no way it could short itself on the charging cradle, but that is what seems to be happening.

Best regards.
#59170 by Morpheus
Sat Jul 03, 2010 3:54 am
jfl wrote:I guess we can agree to disagree on this. I've got more serious problems with my Telo handset anyway as I can't seem to keep it from randomly instantaneously discharging the battery when I hang it up. There should be no way it could short itself on the charging cradle, but that is what seems to be happening.


I had the same problem. I just kept returning the faulty handsets to Costco (about 5-6 handset in a 6 month period), and for the last 2 months they have yet to lose a charge in the cradle. However, I have bought a Siemens SL785 handset, and will be returning the 4 Ooma handsets because all I really need in a pass through service, and a headset connection, which Ooma never had the insight to add for users of their basic service. I have three BT headsets from old to new and they all connect with no problems to the Siemens SL785. This is truly a handset that is going to be a pleasure to own.

I would never pay a $10 a month fee to Ooma. It's just getting to a point where everyone is assessing a premier service to their device and charging a $10 a month fee or some sort of fee. They are just nickel and diming the consumer on these monthly fees. Now if Ooma want to add a Lifetime subscription, then I may reverse my decision. I just HATE all these monthly fees...

Regarding the Bluetooth adaptor; Ooma is again, IMO, gouging its customers. However, I'm betting in a future release of the Ooma Telo that the BT will be built in. I'm pretty sure the BT dongle cost Ooma no more than $2.00 to make and then they turn around and make the BT port proprietary to their dongle and stick a $30 price tag on the dongle.
#59171 by philw132
Sat Jul 03, 2010 4:30 am
One thing I like very much about ooma is the free speech. I'm sure you've all heard of the product "magicjack" they shut there official forums down because they didn't like the feedback they were getting and they didn't want to have the "personal touch" that forums require.
I've never really used forums till I got my Ooma telo. I find it interesting on all the different points of view everyone has, sometimes its helpful, sometimes destructive.

All I can say is for every decision there are options. For the people that don't want premier. Don't buy it, that means you don't get the advanced features including bluetooth. if that is the case that forces you to spend 80-100 bucks on a dedicated bluetooth device like the one from bestbuy or buy a bluetooth compatible phone system. I have both. I have 3 old bluetooth headsets, one is linked to my phone system, one is linked to the telo and the other i have going to my playstation. The reason for that is you have to realise bluetooth is a very short range signal, I can't span both sides of the house just on one system alone. I haven't attempted to pair just one up to both and let it auto-switch, but thats next.

jfl wrote:
I guess we can agree to disagree on this. I've got more serious problems with my Telo handset anyway as I can't seem to keep it from randomly instantaneously discharging the battery when I hang it up. There should be no way it could short itself on the charging cradle, but that is what seems to be happening.

Best regards.
#59176 by Groundhound
Sat Jul 03, 2010 6:58 am
philw132 wrote:All I can say is for every decision there are options. For the people that don't want premier. Don't buy it, that means you don't get the advanced features including bluetooth.

That pretty much sums it up. Premier has a long list of included features, but there are numerous examples where someone has stated that they want only this or that feature and don't want to pay for Premier to get it. Ooma entices new customers with the basic package but must convert a significant number of those basic users to a recurring revenue plan (Premier) in order to have a sustainable company. Adding non-revenue features is counter-productive to that necessary goal. Selling each feature as a stand-alone account package would probably be a customer service and billing nightmare, although Ooma has experimented with "Enhanced Voice Mail" as a standalone upgrade. What Ooma has chosen to do in most cases is to keep tying features to Premier so that it increases the likelihood that there will be several features in the Premier package that appeal to an individual customer and make upgrading to Premier desirable. I wouldn't be surprised to see other package deals, but selling each feature à la carte is unlikely IMO, and I certainly wouldn't expect to see any additional features added to basic.
#59195 by lbmofo
Sat Jul 03, 2010 2:06 pm
jfl wrote:.....rather than having "fanbois" jump to their defense.

Fan boys or not, if someone is making some unreasonable demands/arguments, you can expect lots of push back no matter what the forum is.

jfl wrote:I'd like them better if I could use the technology that is already enabled on their hardware (e.g. BT with a generic dongle) as the originator of this thread suggested he should have also been able to continue doing. Continuing to "add" features by deactivating them and then offering to sell them to you is very bad business policy even if you think it is OK. It will cost Ooma business and if they lose enough then we all lose. They need to wise up.

The thing that people need to understand is that previous to the Bluetooth feature, folks were able to get JACK as functionality using generic bluetooth. So, what they got before and what they get now (unless Premier & ooma dongle) is exactly the same....JACK!

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 5 guests