- Personal Finance
Nettalk aka Talknet Duo VOIP Review.
Talknet and Nettalk?
The Nettalk Duo is the correct name. It is often mistakenly referred to as the Talknet Duo. If you were searching for Talknet Duo, I wanted to include you as well. Sometimes it's easy to confuse the name. I have done it myself and that is why I titled the page the way I did.
What is a Nettalk Duo?
It's a small device that provides local and long distance phone service for a low annual fee of $29.95 and often includes first year service with the hardware purchase. Being that the first year was included, when doing the math, made the device itself under $20.00.
It includes the following phone features:
- Free Voicemail to Email
- Free 411
- Free Call Waiting
- Free Call Forwarding
- Free Three-Way Calling
- Free Speed Dial
- Free e911
Based off of that, it sounded too good to be true. I decided to buy one and am taking you along on my experience from beginning to end.
Photo of the front of the box I received:
What my review covers:
- Purchasing and delivery from Amazon
- Complete step-by-step setup and ease of setup
- Use and call quality
- Advice on Troubleshooting if needed
- Final thoughts
Purchasing and Delivery
I decided to order through Amazon. I chose the free Super Saver shipping, because I am cheap. That is why I am going with this device in the first place. I placed my order and was given delivery estimation of 5 to 9 days. It arrived in 2 days. I am very happy do far.
This is the one I ordered from Amazon:
(Sometimes mistakenly referred to as the Talknet Duo) This one includes one year of service with purchase. Others may include only 3 months.
Complete step-by-step setup and ease of setup
The instructions are very simple.
Basically you have two choices:
- Connect the Duo directly to the router for phone service
- Connect the Duo directly to the computer for phone service.
Which should you choose? Connecting the Nettalk directly to the computer vs. router:
I suppose if you were traveling with a laptop, you could bring your phone service with you if you chose the direct to computer setup. Other than that, I don't see many advantages here. If you connect to your computer, you have to always leave the computer on or the service will shut down when the computer shuts down. Also connecting to the computer involves the extra step of installing driver files to the computer adding additional steps to the setup. If you computer has performance issues (slow, freezing, etc.) it will affect the phones performance.
I don't see the need to include that extra variable into the equation (my computer) and having to leave it running 24/7, so I am going the route of the direct connect to my router.
Here is how my setup went:
1. I went to login.nettalk.com
I logged into this website with the user name and password that came on a sticker inside the box.
When on this site, I needed to put in important information such as my name, my address and picked a new user name and password to my liking. Not much more than that... Just the bare essentials. Submitted that page.
That page brought me to the next page where I had to fill out the e911 information should someone ever dial 911. Not much to this other than an agreement to agree to. Submitted that page.
On the last page, is where the phone number is chosen. I got my choice of area code and then got my choice of available local prefixes (first 3 numbers after the area code). The system then chooses the last 4 digits.
This whole process took me 6 minutes. It was very easy and straight forward, nothing tricky or excessive.
If I had to rate the level of difficulty, it would be: Easy
2. I connected all hardware that came in the box:
Making all phone outlets in the house work.
Since I had cable company digital phone in the past, I already had a telephone line plugged in the back of my cable modem. The other end of that phone line ran to a telephone outlet on the wall. I disconnected one end of the telephone line (from end from the back of the modem) and plugged it to the back of the Nettalk unit. I will now have phone service on all outlets in my house using the Nettalk service.
Connecting up the wires was easily done. I connected them just as shown above. I did save the power as the last connection. I figured by doing that, when it powers up, it will instantly see all other connections right away and maybe avoid any problems.
The biggest issue I had to deal with was having to rearrange electrical plugs on my power strip setup to make myself an available power outlet to use. I also ran the wires out of view. Because of this, it took about 2 minutes.
How easy was it: Very Easy
3. The system syncs and places a test call to you.
Easy enough. Really nothing for you to do, it does all the work. I saved plugging the power in as the last connection made in step 2 above. When I plugged it in the previous step, it honestly took about 1 to 2 seconds for it to complete this step of syncing with their servers and for it to make the ring once test call. I thought maybe something was wrong as it was nearly instantaneous. I now have dial tone and the phone service is working! This process seriously took about 2 seconds.
Use and call quality
I tried out the phone and placed some calls. Overall I would say that the phone service works great and makes good quality connections. I could detect a very faint, very distant, very light static. The same was true with my phone company, so I think it might be the wiring in my house. It is so distant sounding and quiet that many people may not even be able to hear it. It's a notch up from complete utter silence and I am being very critical here.
On the other hand, conversations seem crystal clear and loud, louder than from my previous phone company. It is a welcome change. Overall, I am very pleased.
With dialing, you always have to dial the area code even when placing local calls. Personally, this is second nature to me as I use MetroPCS as my cell phone provider and this is true with them as well.
I don't mind, this adds a little consistency to my life.
Advice on troubleshooting
I didn't experience any issues with my Nettalk phone service. I do have high speed cable modem Internet service. Reading some reviews on Amazon, sometimes others do have issues. I think everyone needs to realize that a VOIP connection needs a good fast and solid Internet connection like cable Internet.
Just like building a house needs a good solid foundation. The best built house relies on the foundation it is built on. The VOIP service relies on your Internet you are providing it. If you have poor Internet, call quality such as choppy or robotic sounding conversations and delays will most likely occur. The best VOIP devices out there can not overcome that.
All of these factor on the Internet speed you subscribe to and if you are receiving it. If you are having issues with your Internet speed, I would recommend properly speed testing it to determine if there is an issue and how to correct it.
I am very pleased with my decision to . It arrived quicker than expected and was very simple to set up. Set up time from picking up the box from my front door to working telephone service took about 10 minutes (8 minutes of actual setup). Overall phone quality was good. It seems they made the product and the web site as easy as possible to use. purchase the Nettalk Duo from Amazon
I chose Nettalk over its main competitor MagicJack. The reason why is that Nettalk offers telephone support in case you need it. They actually include a contact card with their phone number and encourage you to call them. Magicjack does not offer any phone support at all.
No matter if you call this the Talknet Duo or the Nettalk Duo, I know you will love it. It was the right decision for me. Choosing this over my phone company saves me over $300 a year, even after considering the purchase price!
I hope you enjoyed my review.
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I have always enjoyed working with computers and technology. I grew up using a Commodore 64 with a plug in external modem. With that I ran a dialup...