Lead Balloon

The Power of One
December 21, 2006, 3:27 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized


People, do NOT use Vonage for your phone service. If I could shout this from the rooftop of my house, loud enough so that everyone in the world could hear, and immediately switch their service back to a regular phone provider, or toss their Vonage direct mail pieces into the recycle bin without reading them…I would do it.

I work from home and am very dependent on a dependable phone line. Since I began working from home and using the Vonage service, I have been dropped from probably 75% of my phone calls. In the middle of a conversation, the call is dropped. Out of nowhere. And these aren’t just “Hey, how are you?” calls, these are client calls. Presentations. Conference calls, where I am the host. Where, when my call is dropped, everyone else gets dropped, too.

I’ve talked to customer support. Hundreds of times. Maybe THOUSANDS of times. They clearly outsource their customer service to an off-shore company which is still getting up to speed on the intricacies of the human language. And understanding numbers 1 through 10, and how they are different. Did I post on here already about the one lady, who, in the middle of trying to help me said, “If customer says no, then say…” Reading directly from the script. Or rather, the script instructions. Even when she said “V as in Victor” I couldn’t understand the “Victor” part. Not helpful. I’m sure they are very nice people there at Vonage customer support – but they’ve got no clue about how bad the service is. It sucks being the support end of a sucky product. Trust me, I worked for three years in an environment like that.

From time to time, they tell me, “Okay, I’ve optimized your service now, you will receive no more dropped calls.” So I ask, “The service wasn’t optimized before for no dropped calls?” The answer, “Your service has now been updated so that you won’t have any dropped calls.” They are trained to tell the customer only what will make them feel better. Letting you know that they’ve fixed things, when I’m doubtful that they’re fixed at all.

There’s also some sort of 911 thing with Vonage – apparently if you don’t have their e911 service, then if you call 911 in an emergency situation, the 911 operator doesn’t have a record of where you’re calling from – the number/address doesn’t automatically show up. I’ve had nightmares about dialing 911 with the phone behind my back while being held at gunpoint by a home intruder…and the operator on the other end yelling, “YOU MUST HAVE VONAGE! WE’D LOVE TO HELP YOU, BUT WE HAVE NO IDEA WHERE YOU ARE! PLEASE SWITCH TO VERIZON SO WE CAN BETTER HELP YOU IN THE FUTURE WITH ALL YOUR EMERGENCY NEEDS! HANGING UP NOW!!! BUH-BYE!”

I tried to get a better understanding of the e911 service, and the last operator I talked to finally explained to me that there’s no additional charge for the service, you just have to set it up.
Lauri: “Okay, then can you please set it up for me?”
Operator: “No, you have to do it.”
Lauri: “So the right kind of emergency service isn’t default with Vonage, you have to specifically request it?”
Operator: “Yes.”
Lauri: “And even though I’m requesting it now, you can’t set it up for me?”
Operator: “No. You need to dial this number and see what it says – it will tell you if you have e911 set up.”
Lauri: “And if it’s not, how do I set it up?”
Operator: “weoiurn oweruoia hr8iow ohiuofogqb ousoifbaou”
Lauri: “Thanks. You’ve been very helpful. Hope I don’t slip and fall in the shower this morning. Have a great day.”

It’s interesting to me how the calls I make to Vonage never get dropped.


3 Comments so far
Leave a comment

that’s funny. i’ve been working on two different client phone scripts here today. we mainly just have them to have them…but we’re more into improvisation up here 😉

Comment by Sam

So, what is yuor next step? Do you have the ability to cancel your service if not 100% satisfied? I would wear their ass out until they asked me not to be a customer anymore.

Comment by Big Sis

Unfortunately, this is not the first time I’ve heard this complaint. Do you have other choices? Can you switch without a significant penalty?

Comment by Windfall Woman

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