Thursday, May 21, 2009

Taking the Plunge on Magic Jack

I saw Radio Shack was having a one day sale yesterday and they had the Magic Jack for $29.99 instead of the regular $39.99. Having recently cut the landline, I decided to give it a try (in spite of the horror stories). $29.99 covers the device and the first year of service, with each additional year costing $20 ($60 for 5 years in advance). For $29.99, I could pay for only 2 months of my AT&T landline service - and that was the bare minimum plan. (Half of the $15 monthly bill was the service and the other half was taxes!)

Installation was a breeze. I installed it on the Sage server, which runs Server 2003. It seems to work OK for the most part. However, I've run into a problem a couple times where I call someone and they pick up, but I never heard the phone ring nor them talking. I hang up and call back and it gets connected OK. Sound quality seems fine on both ends.

One annoyance is the MJ software is always foregrounding itself when you make a call or you get a call. I set up an EventGhost macro to automatically minimize the MJ window whenever it's activated:

Since it now comes with caller ID, I decided to turn HAL back on. I had to do this fix to get the caller ID working consistently. HAL's telephone VR works with MJ the same as with a landline.

I've got a little more playing around to do with MJ, but it's usable. It's definitely going to get used more than the landline did since long distance is free.

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