Magic Jack  is this for real : Just For Fun Off Topic  -- Current Events Health Happiness Discussion Forum and Review Magic Jack is this for real : Just For Fun Off Topic -- Current Events Health Happiness Discussion Forum

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 09-25-2009, 08:16 Post: 165914
hardwood

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  Magic Jack is this for real

Surely everybody has saw the Magic Jack elcheapo phone service ad on the TV. I really didn't want to call for fear of a barrage of sales call BS.
Is this for real or just another scam of some sort?






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 09-25-2009, 09:51 Post: 165918
auerbach



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  Magic Jack is this for real

I'm from the generation for whom phone service meant one black phone in the house, owned by someone named Bell. The most dramatic thing on our block was a Long Distance Call. ("I can't come out. Dad's going to make a Long Distance Call."Wink yeah right The bravest person on the block replaced the wall cord with a longer one. We wondered if he'd go to jail for that.

Now I can't keep up. Don't ask me what VOIP or apps mean. But I do know I save on LD by dialing a code first. And that it's possible to save even more by using my computer somehow, which is what this firm is offering. As for worrying about being hassled, your number should be on the Do Not Call list. And that company is one of the sponsors of this site.






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 09-25-2009, 10:21 Post: 165920
Murf



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  Magic Jack is this for real

Frank, it's nothing "magic" at all, it's merely a very small computer in a box. You plug your phone into it, and connect it to your internet connection.

Basically it converts your phone call into a digital transmission which is sent over the internet instead of phone lines to a spot near where you're calling at which time another computer turns it from a digital signal back into an analog (audio) signal and dumps it back into the phone lines where it's a 'local' call to your destination.

If you have high speed internet, and the party you call does to you can talk 'long distance' over your computer for free, for as long as you like by downloading a little program called "Skype" which a free service.

Best of luck.






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 09-25-2009, 11:15 Post: 165922
kwschumm



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  Magic Jack is this for real

The fact that it runs over the internet means it's subject to internet problems that arise from time to time. The internet was not really designed for streaming data (audio, video, etc) but there happens to be enough surplus bandwidth that it usually works. If you've watched video over the internet you've probably seen the video stall or get out of sync with the audio, and if you've listened to streaming audio it can stall as well. All of those issues can affect your calls to some extent, but the cost savings can make it worthwhile. I can't say that Magic Jack works or doesn't though, no experience with it here.

We use the internet for voice and conference calls at work and it usually works fine, but for home I'm sticking to POTS for now (plain old telephone system). Lots of people are dumping POTS for their cell phones to save some money by not paying for two services.






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 09-25-2009, 11:35 Post: 165923
hardwood

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  Magic Jack is this for real

Auer;
I go back a bit farther or else we were farther out in the sticks when I was kid. We had a crank phone, long short short was our ring. The old timers said we don't need no @#@%$ dial phone, the old one works just fine,(sometimes).

The Magic Jack sounds like if I bought a steam engine. By the time I lit the fire, got steam up, I'd forget why I wanted steam in the firat place.

I'm really wondering why we keep paying a land line phone, computer don't need it, cell phones seem to work in the bottom of a cellar anymore, Only one of our five kids has a land line anymore.

Frank.






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 09-25-2009, 11:43 Post: 165924
DRankin



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  Magic Jack is this for real

Quote:
Originally Posted by hardwood | view 165923
Auer; I go back a bit farther or else we were farther out in the sticks when I was kid.... long short short was our ring.



Hmmm.... brings back memories....... we had 6 other households on our "party line".






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 09-25-2009, 12:18 Post: 165925
kwschumm



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  Magic Jack is this for real

We still keep a land line for two reasons. One, our security system uses it to dial out and a cell phone converter for it costs a bunch. Two, we don't have good cell phone coverage here unless we walk to the top of the hill.






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 09-25-2009, 12:56 Post: 165926
hardwood

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  Magic Jack is this for real

OK, now a question for my not so brilliant electrical mind.

The crank on the old wall telephone turned a generator that made the juice to call "Central" to call someone else, then what were the batteries for?

Antique stores think them old relics are priceless, we tore them apart for the magnets. Dumb Kids anaway.






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 09-25-2009, 13:12 Post: 165928
greg_g



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Quote:
Originally Posted by hardwood | view 165926
The crank on the old wall telephone turned a generator that made the juice to call "Central" to call someone else, then what were the batteries for?

i remember the hand crank, it was a ring generator. But I don't remember batteries. Not in the wall phone anyway. Power was ordinarily provided by the phone company, and it traveled on the transmission lines. 48vdc I think. Although having said that, it could have been battery power. Anyway, the power on the line carried the conversation, the hand crank just sent a ring signal for the operator to respond.

//greg//






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 09-25-2009, 13:27 Post: 165929
greg_g



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Back to the original question. MagicJack isn't magic at all, it's a simple VoIP device. What's deceiving is the price. The advertised $19.95/year subscription includes advertising that you have to listen to before each and every phone call and/or see them on your computer screen. It's sorta like Google email; free - if you can put up with targeted advertising cluttering up your incoming messages. Pay - and the advertising goes away.

Here's a snippet from the MJ subscriber agreement: "You also understand and agree that use of the magicJack device and Software will include advertisements and that these advertisements are necessary for the magicJack device to work ... Our computers may analyze the phone numbers you call in order to improve the relevance of the ads"
'
At one time there was talk of Magicjack "premium service" which eliminated the advertising. I think it might have been $24/month, but from what I can tell - that never happened anyway. If you fall for their crap - be prepared to be deluged with targeted advertising.

//greg//






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