I do appreciate how service-oriented everyone at ooma is and how responsive they were during the outage yesterday. But, as stated in TechCrunch: "Ooma Offline: If You Wanna Be A Phone Company, You Can’t Go Dead." Given our recent experience with ooma -- and that ooma is basically in start-up mode -- I am now resigned to having occasional outages going forward. But, I ask ooma to give me a contingency plan for what to do when there is an outage.
I could rant about the inconvenience these outages have caused, or about how my wife now worries about future outages impacting life safety should there be no 911 capability to deal with an emergency.
My purpose is not to rant but to ask ooma to undertake some planning so that:
1. outages can be mitigated,
2. provide ooma users with a contingency plan for outages, and
3. provide a backup capability should an outage occur.
Others have commented about the need for "load balancing", eliminating "single point of failures", or providing a "network availability number" similar to Vonage. Ooma needs to put these into effect as soon as possible.
Given that this is now the second outage in a month, I would appreciate a roadmap on what plans ooma has to improve their service levels as as well as a contingency plan for what to do in case of an outage.
I am most concerned about a contingency plan as my wife now is adamant about having a backup capability.
For example, one ooma user said they just downloaded a copy of Skype and they were able to have phone service. I logged into the Skype site and they have a "pay as you go" option. It seems to me this may be the best available option at this time.
Perhaps others may have some other ideas.
Thanks for your suggestions.
If you absolutely have to have phone service (for 911 or whatever), get a POTS line and connect it to the wall port on the back of the ooma hub and it will automatically fail over to the landline when the ooma hub goes offline or loses power.
Or go to Walmart and get a pre-paid cell phone. Even if you don't activate it you can still use it to make 911 calls.
I haven't had a cell phone and have lived without mobile calling for years and since getting ooma, I went out and got a Verizon pre-paid cell phone from Walmart that I'm going to port over to Page Plus Cellular after the $10/60 days included airtime on Verizon is used up.
All that said, yes, ooma needs to have there own backups in place to prevent outages.
I've had my SBC/AT&T internet connection go down for a complete day. Including my landline. Cell phones are our backup plan. Internet connections are not realiable. If you have a fear of 911 emergencies, or have a sick or elderly person in your house, then voip is not the way to go. You MUST always have your own backup plan, no matter what form of communication you have. This is YOUR responsibilty, not oomas or any other company.
It seems to be the way of the world these days to blame everyone else for ones short sightedness.
Did you notice how many people came out of the wood work yesterday to complain endlessly in the middle of a crisis? Where are all these people every day in the forums when a nubie needs help?
So, what happens when there is an internet outage, regardless of the point of origin? Is ooma still responsible for providing 911 service? Or am I responsible for having my own contingency plan?
What I am learning is that the internet is more vulnerable to service disruptions than I ever realized. It is clear that I do need my own backup plan because I cannot rely on the internet nor ooma at this time. I will use Skype as a first line of backup and a cell phone as a second.
I would hope that, eventually, the vulnerabilities in service -- whether due to ooma, internet providers, or fiber cable sabatoge, or whatever -- can be addressed. I would also hope that ooma does eliminate its own vulnerability to a single point of failure as well as improve its failover capability and load balancing as well as provide a contingency phone number service. Its success in the long run depends on it.
I've learned a lot here... two months ago I didn't even know how to spell VOIP and now I are one.
It has been and always will be, a money factor. If you want guaranteed service then you, the individual or business owner should incorporate redundancy into your infrastructure.
I've spent a long time in contingency planning and disaster recovery to know that there is no full proof plan.
You can only be so prepared and complaining because a service you don't pay for is out, then you need only look to you wallet.
I enjoy Ooma. If it goes out one day b/c of outside forces (or financial) I still PAY for my cell phone.
It may be an inconvenience, but that's what happens.
A suggestion would be (and has already been addressed) as adding redundancy in the midwest or east coast.
But, there is a financial matter as well. Can Ooma afford to be vulnerable to such a situation that happen this week? Its a risk reward scenario that only Ooma's management is going to answer.
I live in So. Cal. When a major quake hits, everything pretty much goes down. Power, internet, POTS, cell towers - everything. Usually the first thing back up is POTS. Sometimes even faster than main power. With an old style telephone, it receives it's power from the phone company. But even when it's up right away, it will be jammed. When cell service is restored - it will be jammed as well. Of course, everyone is trying to communicate after a disaster. There is no perfect system. You've gotta weigh the pros and cons of each service.
You don't have to switch lines, you can just plug your active landline into the wall port of the ooma hub and it will automatically fail over and give the landline dialtone to all phones connected to the phone port of the ooma hub when the hub goes down.oomg wrote: So, if you have a VOIP service interruption, simply switch the lines temporarily. This really isn't that difficult.
And that will work regardless if you have your ooma provisioned for landline use or not.