Legal Issues

by Mike Masnick

California Regulators Inadvertently Give VoIP A Boost

from the looking-better-every-day dept

California regulators have agreed to let SBC raise the prices they charge to competitors who lease their lines for local telephone service. SBC can now charge $2.60 more per line. In turn, those other providers are all planning to increase their own prices $4 or $5, though no one seems to explain why they need to raise their rates twice as high as the increase in cost. SBC isn't happy because they claim this rate increase still doesn't cover their costs, and they want it to be even higher. Of course, what they don't seem to want to admit is that the higher this rate goes, the faster it's going to push people to VoIP. Apparently, no one at SBC has been noticing just how cheap VoIP services are these days. As traditional phone service gets more expensive and VoIP gets cheaper it doesn't take much for people to start to question why they're paying more than twice as much for phone service than what someone else appears to be offering (often with more features). Most people don't care about whether it's VoIP or traditional phone service. They just see the same features at a cheap price as their phone bill keeps rising, and the choice is easy.

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  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 24 Sep 2004 @ 7:08am

    No Subject Given

    more features .... less quality and stability.
    It's still not ready for the mainstream. And the main thing being my telephone service NEVER goes down, seriously. On the other hand Broadband services do drop from time to time, not just mine, anybody's, and I consider mine relativly stable. Problem is broadband goes down, woops so did my phone, that's the real problem I see, untill broadband services can guarantee uptime, make it more reliable [and i've had, though its rare, when a fiber was cut like 2 years ago, it took 2 weeks to restore service, i know people with simillar stories]. That's my issue.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    acousticiris, 24 Sep 2004 @ 2:23pm

    VoicePulse Shameless Plug

    I've been using VoicePulse for a half year now.
    For 15 bucks, I get nearly every feature imaginable, I can call in state for free and I get 200 minutes of long distance.
    I had to do some tinkering with my network, so I agree with the previous poster that it isn't exactly ready for main-stream. But it works well enough that nobody I call notices that I'm on a VoIP phone.

    The kicker? While a traditional phone line (from SBC or one of their competitors) in my state might be advertised at around $25 for the most basic service, there's $19 of taxes added to the bill.
    My VoIP service costs 14.99, which after the federal excise tax brings it to just a shade over 15 bucks.
    They'll get the "stability" and "quality" and "network tinkering requirements" dealt with soon enough. It works *great* for me so far, it's saving me a ton of money and it's giving me a whole bunch of cool things that I couldn't do before with my stupid SBC line. Plus I don't have to give money to them anymore.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

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