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Old and Busted: SunRocket. New Hotness: Ooma

Unless you've been living in a cave, you know that SunRocket went down in dotcom flames and took millions of pre-paid subscribers dollars with it.

But keeping the VOIP dream alive (and causing quite a stir) is Ooma.com.

Ooma just launched, getting all the Technowennies tongues' wagging. Ooma is different. In short, you pay $400 for an Ooma box and you get free domestic phone calls for life.

What makes Ooma different -and still able to draw 25 million in VC money for a VOIP startup- is that it uses a P2P model for call termination. Ooma is banking on the fact that many people will keep a "stripped down" PSTN line for 911 and other such usage. So your Ooma box will both allow you to call out and others place calls in your local area. (you're not required to keep a PSTN line)

In theory, like BitTorrent, bandwidth will never be an issue. As demand grows the network grows. As the network really grows, like Skype, Ooma to Ooma will never cost you or Ooma a penny.

It's a bold idea, one that IMO is destined to either be a hit or crater fairly spectacularly. It's a Linux device so that means the hackers will be all over it, that should help it. It has potential. I plan on buying one (no comments about a fool and his money please) and I'll be reporting the good, bad and ugly.

There are plenty of stories in the second link above but if you're looking for more info, this might be a good place to start.

Update: For those of you who like to watch Lee Ward go down in flames, don't miss the second comment. He thought I'd erase it... Heck no.. I'll even make a whole post out of it if he keeps digging himself a hole.


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Comments (30)

Interesting concept, althou... (Below threshold)
gattsuru:

Interesting concept, although the PhoneGnome did it earlier, and a cheap Asterisk configuration does the same thing better. To each their own.

In my tests, the Ooma didn't seem to affect the speed of the Internet connection used by our computers.

For long-range communications, most protocols keep bandwidth between 30 and 90 kilobits per second. Not recommended for dial-up or the weirder DSL options, but modern cable or DSL users won't notice the difference.

Note, however, that Quality of Service matters a lot, here -- if you aren't using a router capable of giving extra attention to the VOIP data, you'll end up with a lot of low-quality calls.

You'll want to hurry up and... (Below threshold)

You'll want to hurry up and erase my comment, Paul, since it highlights just how much you make crap up to support your weak and failed positions.

You lied when you wrote:

"Unless you've been living in a cave, you know that SunRocket went down in dotcom flames and took millions of pre-paid subscribers dollars with it."

and you do this all the time, as do some of your fellow Wizbang writers because, as is the custom here at Wizbang, nobody ever checks their facts -- they just make up crap and count on their readers to not know any better. Go for the drama of well-turned lie when reality doesn't support the drama you want to promote....

The Reality is:

"SunRocket, a Voip service, closed its doors on Monday of this week without notifying its 200,000 customer base and catching most by surprise. Many users were still unaware of its closure on Wednesday as some users still had working service as late as Wednesday morning."

200,000 just doesn't sound as good as millions...

Two points, Lee:1)... (Below threshold)

Two points, Lee:

1) Paul hasn't been deleting your comments, I've been unpublishing them -- as per the e-mail I sent you.

2) If those subscribers had paid at least $5.00 apiece, that quickly becomes $1,000,000 in subscribers' dollars. $10.00 becomes $2,000,000.

It's basic math and grammar, so I can see how it would escape you.

And I'm leaving your comment and this one up for a few hours, to make sure you see it -- and then they'll both join the rest of your recent comments in oblivion.

J.

No Dear Assholic Lee Ward, ... (Below threshold)
Paul:

No Dear Assholic Lee Ward, I'll leave your comment for the whole world to see what a complete dumbass you are....

They took millions of DOLLARS not subscribers.

200,000 * $199(which is what many prepaid) = $39,800,000 That's 39 million you moron.

If you pretend that all of the consumers where halfway thru the contract that's about $20,000,000 you stupid moron.

I could call you a liar Lee but that would be inaccurate. You're a stupid asshole who can't read or do simple math. Moron.

Negative Jay.... Leave it, ... (Below threshold)
Paul:

Negative Jay.... Leave it, I want the whole world to see what a dumbass he is.

It shows what abject idiots populate Blue.

Yet another thread where... (Below threshold)
Paul:

Yet another thread where Lee Ward talks too much but says too little.

OK, Paul, I'll make an exce... (Below threshold)

OK, Paul, I'll make an exception this time. Plus, leaving my own comment up will explain what's been happening to Lee's other comments.

Lee really is quite an effective fact-checker, isn't he? Before he opens his mouth, he checks all his facts at the door.

And I don't think he ever bothers to pick them back up on his way out.

J.

heh- I don't want it erased... (Below threshold)
Paul:

heh- I don't want it erased, I updated the main post to highlight his dumbassery.

So... Will Lee apologize like a man or stammer and fume and change the subject?????

I clicked on the "lee ward"... (Below threshold)
moseby:

I clicked on the "lee ward" link to see who this dummy was and it shot me over to wizbang blue. The crickets were deafening over there.

That is gonna leave a mark.... (Below threshold)
MunDane:

That is gonna leave a mark.

Lee, here...use this Bactine.

Well, you're right -- egg o... (Below threshold)

Well, you're right -- egg on my face, and this means of course that I'll need to do a more thorough job of fact-checking the Wizbang Posts.

Not a problem - it's a target-rich environment, and there will be lots more ahead.

"Well, you're right -- egg ... (Below threshold)
Jess:

"Well, you're right -- egg on my face, and this means of course that I'll need to do a more thorough job of fact-checking MY Posts."

Fixed it for ya...

J

Lee, you're welcome to set ... (Below threshold)
Paul:

Lee, you're welcome to set yourself up as "fact-checker" at Wizbang. You might notice many others -who actually have brains- do the same. (see mantis for example)

But here's a clue, get your shit together.

If you're looking for a target rich environment for people getting their facts wrong, you might start in your own backyard. I proved in about 36 hours that you guys are full of shit.

But still, if you'd like to fact check my posts, feel free... But if you do Lee, you better wear a flame proof suit over body armor.

Consider your next move carefully. Your last one didn't turn out too good.

Lee is absolutely obsessive... (Below threshold)
WildWillie:

Lee is absolutely obsessive with the word "LIAR". He always uses it. It's like racism, he used it so much, it is meaningless. It doesn't have any effect and most people expect and disregard him. ww

Normally I'm forgiving of p... (Below threshold)

Normally I'm forgiving of people's mistakes, especially when they own up to them. But Lee has earned his place on to the select list of people to whom I deny that grace.

Lee, when will you stop LYING about the authors on the main page? When will you admit you're a partisan, LYING hack LIAR who instinctively spouts contrarian codswallop, even when you have to LIE and fabricate things to prove your alleged "point?"

Paul,I must be livin... (Below threshold)
Lorie Byrd:

Paul,
I must be living in a cave because I didn't have a clue what SunRocket or Ooma was and when you got into the P2P model stuff I really felt like a Flintstone. It was interesting though. I look forward to your updates on how the Ooma works.

I doubt that Ooma's model w... (Below threshold)

I doubt that Ooma's model will last long - I expect regulators to shut it down quickly as violative of the various phone tariffs.

Lee Ward whined patheticall... (Below threshold)
_Mike_:

Lee Ward whined pathetically:
Well, you're right -- egg on my face, and this means of course that I'll need to do a more thorough job of fact-checking the Wizbang Posts.

Uh.. actually, Paul's facts were correct. You mean you'll need to spend more time fact checking your nonsense.

Oh and did I miss where you apologized to Paul for calling him a 'liar' or for falsely accusing him of deleting your posts ? Or are you just going to do you cow-ward-ly thing and run away ?

Lee is absolutely obsess... (Below threshold)
_Mike_:

Lee is absolutely obsessive with the word "LIAR".

It's indicative of an exceptionally poor vocabulary. Apparently, Lee doesn't know other words to describe someone with which he disagrees.

Still uses spare bandwidth ... (Below threshold)
mantis:

Still uses spare bandwidth for routing other calls, a la Skype. Things could get messy when enough people get on Ooma.

The other big problem is the ease with which people could listen to others' calls. Oh, and the phone companies will be pissed about the use of their local PSTN lines (don't know how that would hammer out, legally).

Second line feature is nice, though.

Think I'll wait and see. Interested to hear how it works for you, Paul. I mean...LIAR!!!1!

I game and we use a server ... (Below threshold)
Gmac:

I game and we use a server to do voice over IP. While it is cheap and easy to set up the overall quality sucks when compared to a regular POTS line and is still somewhat below the quality of my cellular service.

Ex-wifey has VOIP service and when we chittychat and she's on it the voice quality is perceptibly substandard (much like Lee's musings).

You still have to have a connection to the 'net, either via cable or POTS but it is an interesting business model with its one time fee for 'lifetime' service.

I'd give it 5, possibly 8 years before its supplanted by newer technology but all in all, a pretty good bang for the buck. Do keep us informed as to how it performs. Field reports are good.

Don't be too harsh on Lee, ... (Below threshold)
MunDane:

Don't be too harsh on Lee, we all make mistakes.


OTOH, those that somehow blame others for THEIR mistakes..well, still trying to see how the substitution of "people" for "dollars" was made even as it was in his own bold quote.

That isn't fact checking, that is arrogance.

I have not had a "home" pho... (Below threshold)
Paul:

I have not had a "home" phone in almost a year. We just use cell phones.

I'm getting it -as many of their customers would- as a second line.

SQ is important to me but only to a point. If you consider my local telco was charging me $50 a month in 8 months this thing is free.

That's how I look at it anyway.

"Unless you've been living ... (Below threshold)
nogo war:

"Unless you've been living in a cave, you know that SunRocket went down in dotcom flames and took millions of pre-paid subscribers dollars with it."

Soooo after abusing those who trusted it...people are supposed to fall for" no this time it's ok..just give us the money upfront and trust us"

Hey I like to get by on the cheap too...but like Get Rich 30 minute commercials on TV and Get Rich Books...some stuff like this obvious pyramid scam needs to be filed under "Fiction"...

I stand corrected as it is ... (Below threshold)
nogo war:

I stand corrected as it is not the same group..however this person explores some questions...
http://valleywag.com/tech/deathwatch/why-ooma-is-doomad-280257.php

as..well..usually... I try to provide a link for my position....

For those of you keeping sc... (Below threshold)
C-C-G Author Profile Page:

For those of you keeping score at home, that's:

Paul 2
Leeward 0

Not a problem - it... (Below threshold)
Not a problem - it's a target-rich environment, and there will be lots more ahead.

by Lee Ward

You're right. Everytime you show up it's a target of opportunity.

OBTW leeward, have you identified the racists opposed to the illegal immigrant amnesty bill? Or are you still looking at the race pimping card you played wondering if you should pull it back or double down?

Not a problem - it... (Below threshold)
C-C-G Author Profile Page:
Not a problem - it's a target-rich environment, and there will be lots more ahead.

And yet you keep missing the target.

Take the lefty blinders off and maybe your aim will improve.

I always find it interestin... (Below threshold)
Lledowynn:

I always find it interesting that when Lee is smacked down hard, he always disappears or rather, cuts and runs from the thread. How appropriate that he's a liberal...

It's not a question "if" OO... (Below threshold)
Mike:

It's not a question "if" OOMA will crash, only how quickly it goes down. It's mostly a function of how long it takes for all the experts and reviewers to realize that it's built on a bunch of technical lies, claiming to do things with a PSTN phone line which are impossible, like preventing someone from listening in on all the calls going across their own phone line, or like getting the correct Calling Line ID delivered to the destination.

I hope this absurdity ends real soon!




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