WrethaOffGrid | |

I can’t wait for Monday, that is not something you normally hear from most people, Monday usually means the end of the weekend (free time) and the start of the work week, blah! But for me, Monday, this particular Monday will be a very happy day, why you ask? Because I am finally getting INTERNET hooked up at my cabin WOO HOO!

This was something I researched quite a bit before we moved out here, I found out that my choices were limited, I could get satellite (EXPENSIVE to start up and maintain, require at least a year contract, not as fast as I would like, unreliable, AND they meter your bandwidth which means no streaming videos, movies or large downloads), or I could get dial up (means the expense of getting a phone line, and toooo slow), there were no other options at the time. I have relied on my neighbor since I’ve gotten here to check my email and do a few things on line, he uses satellite and he doesn’t like it either, too expensive and not as reliable as it should be.

The other day at the store, I saw a notice on the board about a new internet out here, it’s run by locals, the start up costs are reasonable, and the monthly fees are reasonable, about half what satellite runs! And there are no contracts. It’s not satellite or dial up, it’s a microwave signal, we are right across the valley from the tower, line of sight thing, that means our connection should be good. According the the people hooking us up, it’s by far faster then satellite, much more reliable, no delays, and the best thing, no bandwidth metering! I can download/upload as much as I want! I told them up front that I am a bandwidth hog, I like to watch streaming movies and TV shows, I surf and download quite a lot, they said that was no problem, woo hoo! Can you tell that I am happy about this???

If this works out like I hope it will, I will get phone service through the internet and will drop my cell phone, it barely works out here, and eventually I will not be able to keep the current plan I have anyhow, I am still using the employee plan where I used to work, once my cell phone carrier finds out I no longer work there, they will not allow me to keep that plan, I figured I would have to let my phone go at that point anyhow, if I can get a good (cheap or free) phone service through the internet, that would work out better for me.

Anyone have any suggestions for online phone services, low cost or free? Or are there any I should stay away from? Please let me know. Thanks!

Hopefully the next time I post a message here, it will be from MY cabin on MY internet connection. They are supposed to come over Monday between 9 and 10 am, the installation should be quick and easy, and it will work with our power system with no problems. Now, I have to go home and clean up the cabin, it’s not too bad, but being such a small space, a little clutter looks much worse than it really is. :)


Anonymous Susie said…

That is such great news.
Congratulations and have fun.
Susie in northern NY
(GT Xpress 101 yahoo group member)

April 13, 2008 6:35 PM


Blogger Wretha said…

Thanks Susie, I’m very excited about it, I appreciate you taking the time to leave a comment. :)


April 13, 2008 6:45 PM


Anonymous Anonymous said…

Congratulations! Sounds like you are getting access via WiMax. Very cool. Keep us informed as to how it works out for you, please.

There are two major versions of VoIP (voice over IP, or internet protocol). The first is very low cost but requires a computer to act as the base station, and the handset plugs into the USB port. Skype is the best known vendor of this type. The advantages are lower cost, easily take it anywhere you can take your laptop and plug into the internet. The disadvantage is that it only works through a computer, so it has to be on and in a convenient location if you want to receive calls. Probably best for making calls and less convenient for receiving unless your computer is always on. My daughter has this as she is overseas in the military and is great when she is away from home. Because you are going directly from computer to computer or phone system there is no buffering of the signal so Skype voice service can sound choppy sometimes.

The second form of VoIP is like that offered by Vonage and AT&T CallVantage. In this form you have a telephone adapter plugged into your cable modem or router, and a regular phone plugs into the adaptor. This makes it easy toi use the whole variety of phone handsets designed for the broad home system market. We have CallVantage for the last several years and use cordless phones which run several hours without any power just their internal batteries, but do require recharging periodically.

This second type of VoIP sends a signal to the VoIP vendor who does buffer the call and manages its signal quality. We have excellent sound quality over cable internet (about 300K bps), and it has never gone down. Our cable connections goes down a couple of times per year, but CallVantage has complete set of services such as online answering machine, call forwarding, call filtering, caller ID, and many other options which you can manage via their web page.

I think Vonage is about $25/mo, and CallVantage is about $35/mo. Skype is free between Skype users, and about two cents per minute (and $3/mo) to connect to land line and cell phones.

– Jeff

April 13, 2008 11:48 PM


Blogger Wretha said…

Thanks Jeff, I have been learning about voip and the other options, I’m looking for CHEAP or free, I have a couple of companies in mind, Skype is one, the other one is Magic Jack.


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