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Hi All,

My General Manger spends a lot of time in the USA but lives here in Canada. He ordered and installed a "majicJack" some time in last year and loves it.

He plugs a little device into a USB port, plugs a normal phone into that, and as long as he has an internet connection has unlimited long distance, etc. He picked a number in Colorado to use (has a friend there) but since he lives in Toronto, Ontario area has the call forwarded up here so she can call locally. Calls home free all the time, etc. I tried using it and it seems like a normal phone when in use.

For $19.99 a year after the first year it seems like one heck of a deal.

I am thinking that when I get my little EEE PC later this spring this would be a great way to have essentially free long distance when travelling, especially in the USA as my cell gets real expensive down there.

Any thoughts, pro's, cons?

Thanks,

Tom
 

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There was an open line radio talk show here a couple of weeks ago and lots of people were calling up and ripping on this thing. Things like various problems technically, customer service issues, etc. .I don't own one so can't help you first hand.
 

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If you understand what it's doing, you'll appreciate it for what it is.

A USB VoIP/Phone jack might be worth $20 to you, if it's any good. Don't be fooled into thinking they just got the device straight from Q himself. The internet calling technology is widely in use. Most people use a headset with their computer to make the same calls.

Adapting a traditional phone makes the technology less intimidating for some people. So you're paying to use a classic styled phone to make calls on the internet, when you could just buy an internet phone service that runs as a program on the laptop. What majicJack allows you to do with a generic phone can be done with a headset plugged right into your laptop.

IMHO, I don't like using a 'majic' box to run programs I'm comfortable with myself. And using a computer headset doesn't feel weird for calling telephones, so I don't need to pay to have internet phone calls feel like using a regular phone. That's like putting a steering wheel on your bike, so it feels like driving a regular car.
 

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At least where I live I can't get a local number from the Magicjack people. Sure it's great if I call another Magicjack customer since then it's free but I don't know any of those either. So anyone who may call me locally will incur long distance charges.

I've heard of a few people who have this and love it, just wouldn't work for me.
 

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I bought two of them, one for my parents, one for my sister, they all live in Italy, I'm in Florida.
It might not be a substitute for a landline, but they can call me on my cell phone with no long distance charges, we could talk the whole day for nothing. As long as they remember to keep the PC turned on, I can also call them for free, for I have an unlimited minite plan on my cell.
Quality isn't great, but it's fair. I've been told the first releases of the gitzmo were faulty, the latest ones are better.
Remember that the EEE needs to be connected to internet for it to work.
 

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The EEE comes with Skype software installed, btw.
I lost interest in Magic Jack after seeing how well Skype worked for me.

My daughter is in university and currently lives about 300 km from me.We have been video-skyping with it and it really is a great program. While the video isn't perfect, you have to think that the video phone, promised decades ago, is starting to be a reality.

A couple of things that really made it worthwhile for me:

My daughter used to sit with me and watch The Amazing Race. Since starting university that has only happened the odd time that that show was on and that she was at home. This past weekend we made a video call and I sat the EEE PC beside me and she put her laptop beside her. So we watched the show live but 300 km apart and could chat at the happenings on the show. If I turned my head she was there! Of course she wasn't beside me, but for a bit it felt like it and it was really nice to do that!

Another great moment was this morning. We have had this little tradition since the kids were very small to wake up early in the morning and serenade the one having the birthday with a rousing "Happy Birthday" song and a cake or pie.

So this morning was my son's 16th. My daughter and I decided to do a video skype-call and she was able to come into my son's room and sing with us and see my son Chris wake up on his 16th birthday!

It might not mean much to many, but I'll tell you that that alone was worth the price of the little EEE PC netbook!

..Tom
 
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