When it rains it pours, although since this is Michigan, it would
probably be more appropriate to say that when it snows, it really
snows (I can personally attest to this, we really got hit with the
snow overnight!). I say this because today, VoIP service came to the
Upper Peninsula, and it is being offered by not one, but two of the
VoIP companies that offer the best value for consumers! Strange how
things work, it appears that both companies got a supply of numbers
from Telesthetic and loaded them into their switches today (John
Lodden must be smiling!).
In addition, one of those companies vastly expanded the number of
ratecenters in which it offers service.
First, here are the Upper Peninsula ratecenters in which numbers will
be available: Bergland, Chatham, Curtis, Engadine, Escanaba, Houghton,
Iron Mountain, Iron River, Ironwood, Keweenaw, Mackinac Island,
Marquette, Menominee, Michigamme, Newberry, Powers, Republic, Rock,
Sault Ste. Marie, St. Ignace, Stephenson, Trout Lake, and Watersmeet.
And the two companies? BroadVoice and VoicePulse. I'm not sure who
was actually first but it appears that both started offering their
U.P. service sometime this afternoon. In addition, BroadVoice
increased the number of ratecenters it serves in the Lower Peninsula,
the net effect of which is that VoicePulse and BroadVoice both have an
almost identical list of ratecenters served.
From what I have read on BroadbandReports.com, both of these
companies would be a good choice for VoIP service. Each has its
strengths and weaknesses. If you frequently make calls to Canada or
any of the countries in Europe that are included in the BroadVoice
plan, you may want to go with them. On the other hand, VoicePulse
has a set of features that no one else even comes close to,
particularly with regard to call filters and managing incoming calls.
There are other differences, and I'm not going to try and give an
exhaustive list tonight. Besides, it probably wouldn't be fair for
me to make a comparison because I've had the opportunity to actually
use the service of one of these companies, but not the other.
I am going to try to not play favorites in this message; if the posts
I have read on BroadbandReports.com are any indication, these are both
good companies. Neither is perfect, but NO VoIP company is perfect.
I will point out that if you are comparing by price, remember that
BroadVoice currently adds a "Regulatory Recovery Fee" of $1.50 per
phone number, whereas VoicePulse does not.
Remember, you can get a fairly accurate idea of which VoIP companies
offer VoIP service in any Michigan ratecenter by going to the page at
http://michigantelephone.mi.org/local/reverse.html and looking up your
ratecenter, then look in the "VoIP" column to see who offers service.
You may also want to look at adjacent ratecenters - depending on who
calls you the most (and what ratecenters they can call as a local
call), sometimes it's more advantageous to have a number in an
adjacent or nearby ratecenter, rather than the one in which you
How to Distribute VoIP Throughout a Home:
If you live in Michigan, subscribe to the MI-Telecom group: