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Magic Jack - Not A Bad Gadget for Free Calling But Forget About Customer Service if a Billing Error is Made

Updated on September 10, 2012
Lisa HW profile image

"Lisa" , a "social sciences enthusiast" and Mom of three grown kids, writes from personal experience/exposure and/or past research

Incidentally (Notes on Transferring Ownership, Lost or Stolen MagicJack, and Buying a Second-Hand MagicJack

A commenter brought up a situation in which he'd purchased a second-hand MagicJack but didn't have the original password and e.mail account information. Because it was a situation I haven't run into I went to Magic Jack's live chat to ask a few things about how things work if the device is lost or stolen, or if someone buys a second-hand Magic Jack. As it happened, I got a super-quick response when I clicked on live chat, and the person easily answered my questions within a very, very, short time.

Information on "odd" situations like this is below:

Lost or Stolen Magic Jack

If your MagicJack becomes lost or stolen contact the company immediately to block service.

Buying A Second-Hand MagicJack

If you're thinking about buying a second-hand MagicJack you should know that you should know that one thing you should do is get the original password and e.mail account information from the original owner. If you have that information you can change both, and you can also add your own credit card in case you want to buy additional years of service and/or International prepaid minutes. (This is based on my just checking with Keira, on MagicJack's live chat and asking.) A second-hand owner who has changed the password can also change the 911 information MagicJack has on record for the account.

I asked MagicJack's live chat about the password and original e.mail account in the case of a second-hand purchaser, and I was told both can be changed at any time, as long as someone has the original information.

MagicJack can be used on different computers, and it isn't necessary to have the password each time you change the computer on which the device is being used; so a second-hand user (even without the original information) would be able to use the device. Also, a second-hand purchaser (without a password) would be able to get technical assistance through MagicJack's frequently asked questions/search feature and through live chat with a MagicJack customer service rep.

What a potential purchaser of a second-hand device may wanted to double-check with the company, itself (as opposed to taking my word for it here) from the company, is what, exactly, does changing the password and e.mail information mean, in terms of being a second-hand owner (since there's no way to transfer ownership in the company's records). What information, that they keep on any account, can or can't be changed if a device is purchased second-hand (in view that ownership can't be transferred). In other words, a potential second-hand buyer should contact the company's live chat and ask what, exactly, "transferring ownership" means and doesn't mean. From what I gather, "transfer of ownership" seems to means nothing but who the company has on file as the owner. I asked if there's something a potential second-hand purchaser needs to know, and it appears to me there is nothing in particular (other than knowing his name will not be listed in MagicJack's file as the "owner"). I don't know how that matters if I can sell my MagicJack to any Tom, Dick, or Harry; give them the password, and consider (in my "mental records") them "owner". I suppose it could be a problem if someone were to try to claim a MagicJack device with lots of money on the account as part of an insurance claim after, say, a home burglary.

Of course, how important considering these details is depends on how much a potential second-hand purchaser would be spending. If someone can buy a second-hand device with only a year of service on it, that would be one thing. He'd have to measure the price of the device against the time left on it and consider the fact that the need to add more time and/or International prepaid minutes would come sooner on a device with less time/International minutes on it. A device with a lot of time in service left (as in the case of the commenter below) would mean no real need for putting money on a MagicJack account; but it would mean using the device with whatever limitations not able to transfer ownership may pose for a longer period of time. Of course, making certain to get the password and e.mail information from the original owner will eliminate a lot of problems.

The point is, if you're considering buying a second-hand MagicJack these are things you may want to ask before you do, particularly if you're going to be paying for several years of service already on the device. Then again, if someone has a MagicJack they no longer want or need and is willing to sell you the device and a year of service for very little money, go with it.

I can see a scenario where a MagicJack account may have a lot of prepaid International minutes on it already. I don't happen to know how far in advance anyone can pay for the "Gold Preferred" (5-year service) ahead of time. As far as I know, with the exception of International prepaid minutes, the most money involved with any MagicJack device and account would be the original $35 purchase price and any extra years of service, which, as far as I know, would most likely be about $59 for the 5-year service (in other words, not particularly worth worrying about any home burglaries and insurance claims over).

All the Clear Calls You Want - But Little Customer Support on Mistakes They Make in Charges

Don't ask me why I was up at 5:00 a.m. Sunday morning, but I was. That's when the infomercial for Magic Jack was aired; and although I've never in my life been tempted by any infomercial, I fell for this one. (Actually, a couple of years ago there was that buy-one-get-one deal on inflatable guest beds, and that was hard to resist. Also, I'm still resisting the swivel-chair exerciser that allows a person to do the sit-down twist while watching television...) In any case, in all my wise-shopper wisdom I ordered the calling device. Once the damage was done I decided to research the product.

While I did find some good reviews, most of them were old. That's why I'm writing this piece.

Magic Jack is a tiny gadget that plugs into the USB port of your PC. Any phone can then be connected to Magic Jack, and - voila - all the free domestic calls you want (and prepaid International calls can be made for .02 a minute). When purchased by calling the number shown in the infomercial Magic Jack, itself, costs $39.99. That price is the purchase price for the gadget and includes a phone number advertised as being yours "for life". System requirements include Apple/Mac, Windows XP or Vista, as well as a high-speed Internet connection.

Magic Jack can be ordered on a free trial basis, so your credit card will not be billed unless you decide to keep the gadget.

The first year of service is offered at no charge, and the second year is offered at $19.99 (which can be paid when/if you decide to keep Magic Jack). The free-trial offer is what got me to make that call; but even with that I wondered if I had ordered something that would not work well.

While the company offering the product offers ways to deal with any difficulties in installing the software, all went super-smoothly and super-quickly with my installation. I've seen others say a similar thing about their installation.

Within minutes of plugging the device into the USB port it is possible to begin making calls with it.

For now, I'm using an inexpensive cordless phone system, so any extremely minor imperfections may be attributed to that (or to the fact that I haven't yet found the right audio settings on 1) the phone, 2) my computer, or 3) the Magic Jack program, itself. I've thought twice about even mentioning the very minor imperfection because it is, in fact, so minor.

The calls are clear, and I've been told that I sound exactly the same as I do when I use my cell phone (which is an almost-land-line-like sound). The person to whom I was spoke came in loud and clear, although that minor imperfection was present: He almost came in too loud, and there was just the hint of "airiness" in the background.

It was so slight it is almost not worth mentioning, because many PC calling systems have far worse (or else they sound as if they've gone dead while you are talking). I've called several automated systems (my bank and a couple of companies), and the quality of the call seemed perfect. When my trial-calling person called me from his home a couple of times I let his calls go to voice mail. Magic Jack sent me e.mails to let me know the voice mails were there and the number from which the sender called.

For now, I'm using a digital phone system, so there's the chance that an analog phone (or another brand or quality of phone) would eradicate the barely perceptable imperfection in the human-to-human call. For the most part, the device offers quality of calling that comes extremely close to land-line phones.

One note about the generally excellent, automated, system used to take phone orders for the product: While the process is well designed customers need to be careful at the very end of the ordering process. Once the order has been placed the system's "lady" asks if you will listen to one more thing. "She" explains how you can order other devices at a discounted price. The system then asks how many more the caller would like, but instructs what button to push if no additional devices are desired.

At this point in the process, however, there is the option to choose faster delivery (3 business days) over the free-shipping, 14-day, time-frame. This is where I accidentally ordered faster shipping, and I still don't quite know how that happened. Since the device can be ordered online (www.magicjack.com) at the same price and on the same free-trial basis, I think I would recommend ordering it that way, rather than over the telephone.

The company does warn that the product should not be relied as the only way to make a 911 call, in view of the possibility that power outages and computer problems can occur. Provided there are no unforeseen power problems, emergency calls can be made; and company offers the provision for the user to list his exact location. Since the product is portable and can be taken on trips and used with any computer and any phone, the company reminds users to remember to change the location they list for emergency calls.

Most of us have probably tried one kind of PC calling program/system or another at one time or another. While good quality calls may be available through these, I haven't really run into one of them. Getting full-service from these usually does require a per-month charge.

I ordered the gadget because I figured I had nothing to lose. If I liked it I could turn my computer into a phone (at least for the next two years) for a very reasonable, one-time, charge.

I think I like it. I think I'll keep it. (The company said I would, but I wasn't sure I could believe them.)

ADDITIONAL NOTE ADDED ONE DAY AFTER THIS WRITING:

Although the above piece could have been re-written, now that I have gotten rid of that "hint of imperfection" in sound quality, I thought that leaving the original piece, which pointed out the original (although minor) issue would be more helpful.

I have resolved that very minor problem by adjusting the sound in my headset to one level lower than it had been. Apparently, it turns out the calls come through TOO loud and clear, which may require turning the earpiece volume down a level.

Post Script: And Now About the Customer Service Problem:

It has been over a month since I've had the device. It works well. Last week I noticed, though, that my Magic Account did not show that I had signed up for the second year of service. My plan was to contact them to ask about that after they took their charges from my credit card, which was delayed until the 30 days had passed since I received the product.

My card was charged for priority shipping that I did not request, and it was charged for the second year of service that does not show up on my account. Magic Jack does not offer any kind of customer support other than online live chat, and my online chat lasted around an hour, with long, long, intervals between my input and getting a reply. In the end, I was told, essentially, that no refund for the priority shipping would occur (because I did, I've now discovered, get priority shipping that I DID NOT request). My request for a refund (in view of the fact that the second year doesn't show up on my account) was ignored. Essentially, I told the customer service rep that since I was being charged for shipping I hadn't requested I wanted to cancel the second year of service (whether or not my records even show that I have it). That request was ignored, and I was told to "give it a week", and the second week should show up in my account.

I asked for an e.mail or US mail address, so I could write to the company (and, yes, complain). That's when I was told there is no customer support other than the long, drawn-out, online chat.

As of today, I have been charged $73.00 (plus change), $19.99 of which is for a second year that isn't showing up in my account, and $13.00 (plus change) for shipping I specifically declined during the phone order process. If the second year shows up in a week, I suppose that's fine; but I don't appreciate having my request to cancel (since it isn't showing up anyway) just not even acknowledged.

I do not recommend ordering the device over their automated phone order-processing. It is too easy to have an error occur at the end, when they ask if you want priority shipping, the second year, and any additional devices. They do have their website, where orders can be placed and where, perhaps, such errors may be less likely to occur (although I don't know about that for sure).

About Voice Mail - When It Works

One question that has come up a few times is whether voice mail works when the computer is off or when the device is not plugged in. Apparently, even though the Magic Jack site says voice mail works whether the device is plugged, computer is off, or Internet connection is down; other resources have provided information that appears to conflict with Magic Jack's site, so people sometimes wonder. Here's the link to the page on the Magic Jack site, regarding voice mail:

http://www.magicjack.com/5/faq/

I've tested, for myself, whether voice mail works when my own PC is off and when the Magic Jack device is not plugged in. I called myself, left a message, and didn't plug the Magic Jack back into the computer until I turned it back on and checked my e.mail. Even without the device plugged in the e.mail (with the attached .wav file was there when I got to my Inbox).

(This question is addressed somewhere down the "row" of comments, but I thought I'd include this note about it here, in case anyone is wondering (and doesn't know about the comment that's quite a ways into the row of comments.)


A Note About Satellite Internet and MagicJack

A reader asked if MagicJack could be used with Satellite Internet, so I checked the MagicJack "knowledgebase" to see if I could find the answer.

In answer to the question about whether MagicJack recommends using the device with Satellite Internet MagicJack put an emphatic (all caps) "NO". They note that even though Satellite Internet is faster than dial-up, it is considerably slower than cable.

Copyright Notice

This page and its content is copyright of Lisa HW, with original publication in February, 2008 and ongoing changes to text found on this page.   All rights reserved.


Author's Note:   In Feburary 2007 I wrote the above account of my experience with purchasing and installing MagicJack. In the months since, readers have been amazingly helpful in contributing their own experiences.

Since it has been over a year since I first installed MagicJack, I thought I would "sum up" my experience with it now. The first review is the one written in February 2007. My update, as well as a wealth of reader contributions, follows.

16 Months Later - An Update

 Since I've had MagicJack for a while now, I thought it may be useful to write an update.

It has been over 16 months since I purchased MagicJack (as a result of an impulse, infomercial, purchase).  The software has been installed in my PC (with Vista) since then.  The device, itself, has remained plugged into the same machine for the same length of time.  My first year of free service has run out, so I'm now on that "extra" year (that I paid $20 for).

Although I'm only one consumer; based on my experience with MagicJack, I'd have to say that no news is good news.

Other than an echo problem; which turned out to be because I had the volume settings on too high, and which I resolved by using MagicJack's "troubleshooting" feature on their site); I've had no problems with the device, the existing installation, or the company.    This was not the fault of the device, but there has been a time or two when I've moved my computer desk and made cables push against MagicJack, causing it to "sort of fall out" of the USB port.  Because I use the port at the back of the machine, I haven't noticed that the blue light was off until I tried to make a call.  Now I know to take a look behind the PC to make sure the light is on.  That problem could be eliminated by using a front USB port, but I can't stress enough that it has only occurred twice and didn't happen "for no reason". 

In the interest of full disclosure, I don't use the MagicJack phone regularly.  It's an extra phone that, to me, just seemed worth the price.  There are a few people who have that number, though, so I've had time to get a reading on the quality of calling.    On my end, the calls sound exactly the way calls over the land line sound.  There have been times when the person to whom I'm talking has reported a slight echo but said it wasn't "anything big".

Although, after the initial encounters I had with customer service (over relatively minor issues, as mentioned in previous writing), I have had no reason to contact MagicJack's live chat for myself; because I have tried to assist readers occasionally, I have had some limited, additional, dealings with the live chat feature.  It has been satisfactory.  It occurred to me to re-write the MagicJack Hub with a title that didn't send such a negative message about customer service; but the fact is that I, and others who have commented, did have the negative experiences mentioned.  Maybe my first impression of customer service was not the best.  Maybe I've only had no problems with it because my own issues were eventually resolved.  In any case, things are as they are; and having more confidence in customer service today doesn't mean there was no reason not to in the past.

One thing I've had quite a bit of experience with is the MagicJack website.  Again, because I've often looked for answers to people's questions by using the MagicJack "knowledgebase", I gotten to know the site much better than I had in the past (or that many casual users may).  I've discovered that once a person knows the site better (and it can take some time), it gets easier to know better what kind of words to use when searching.

I've had two automatic upgrades to the software, and they went well and without any "big deals" or problems.

I suspect that if I'd take the time (and I should, in view of the fact that I've found myself writing more about MagicJack than I ever planned to), I think I could probably eliminate the minor echo occasionally reported by others who talk to me.  It doesn't happen all that often, though, and even when I do try to use the troubleshooting feature to further adjust volumes, it will be kind of tricky to know whether the problem is solved.    It would involve making adjustments and then making a bunch of calls and asking people if there was the hint of echo.  I haven't had the inclination to be bothered doing that.   For the record, I'm using an inexpensive, cordless phone.

In spite of that (truly) minor imperfection perceived only by the occasional caller, I have to say I kind of love MagicJack.  I'll admit part of that "love" could be the "gadget appeal", but I just find it kind of "neat" to have that extra phone number and phone; and the knowledge that if and when I ever do get to go on vacation (and I will - soon), I'll get to tote my phone number with me.

I see lots of complaints (especially on YouTube) about MagicJack, and I'm obviously not in a position to dispute or question them.  I do sometimes wonder if some of these people just didn't do something correctly, or if they have the wrong PC or connection.  I guess it isn't my business.

In any case, MagicJack is now being sold at a number of retailers (which is very different than when I purchased mine).  In view of the guarantee on the device, I, personally, don't see how anyone can go too wrong with it.

About the 911 Icon on the Magic Jack "Soft Phone" (Screen)

A reader asked it's possible to accidentally dial 911 from the Magic Jack "soft phone" (the Magic Jack screen that shows up on your PC's screen when you use Magic Jack for calls). I'd never paid much attention to that icon, which will appear in different colors, depending on whether your location (for 911 purposes ) is on record with Magic Jack and whether Magic Jack 911 service is available in your area.

Green indicates that your location is on file (as you've entered it). Magic Jack urges users to keep their 911 location information up-to-date.

Red indicates Magic Jack cannot identify your location. To fix this click on the red light in http://my.magicjack.com

Yellow indicates that Magic Jack cannot immediately identify your physical location. Verifying your physical location may take a few days.

With regard to whether accidentally pressing that 911 icon on the Magic Jack soft phone could reach 911 operators: YES

One customer-service/tech-service rep with Magic Jack pointed out that the 911 icon is set off from the the numbers and that accidentally hitting it (and reaching 911) is not likely. I don't think the icon is all that far away from the star, the zero, and the pound sign. I can see how if you have a mouse that may stick a little on your desk surface it might be fairly easy to have a slip-up. I don't have a mouse pad on my small computer desk (no room for one, really, because I have a good-sized, ergonomic, keyboard). Once in a while the mouse does stick ever so slightly.

Another thought is that small children (either making calls or sitting on a caller's lap) could find the round, green, button (again the otherwise mostly black screen) appealing enough to want to click it.

One reason I never really paid much attention to the 911 icon is that I always dial from my real phone, rather than the screen's soft phone. Another point about the icon is that it never even occurred to me that it could be a "live" icon. Dialing from the real phone eliminates the possibility of a 911 mishap, although I'd think that just being a little careful when clicking the bottom row of the soft phone's keypad ought to be all that's necessary to all but eliminate the possibility of a mishap.

My own plan is that if I ever need 911 I'll reach for a phone other than the Magic Jack phone anyway. Somehow, with all the warnings about limitations of Magic Jack when it comes to 911 service I've just never planned to use it (even though I do have my location information listed just in case).

For more information (and recommended information) about 911 service from your Magic Jack phone:

www.magicjack.com/techchat/

Matt (A Reader) Comments -

The following comments/contributions were made by Matt, who is a reader. Because of formatting issues associated with longer posts, I've included Matt's post in a separate text box.

Lisa


Hi Lisa,

I came across your site while researching the magicJack and have found
your "hub" to be quite useful. Or at least attempting to be. One thing
I've noticed (since I've read everything here) is that it seems the
majority of people don't even bother to read the ToS and just
unknowingly "Accept" everything in it when they hook up their
magicJack. Then they turn around and complain about what they just
agreed to.

Wake up people! READ the TOS BEFORE you finish the install process.
You have to agree to it as you go through the installation, so you
might as well know what the hell you are agreeing to.

But to break it down in laymens terms....

You do NOT get Unlimited Free Long Distance. You get somewhat
restricted access. If you use your magicJack 20x as much as a "normal"
user, you are considered to be an excessive user and will end up
having to purchase minutes (at a very low rate) to make outgoing
calls. They don't define how much talk time a "normal" user uses. So
they leave it wide open to terminate your account at any time w/o
notice at their discretion.

Don't be too alarmed though, as most VOIP, Telecommunications and ISP
ToS agreements use verbage like this to cover their own asses. In most
cases, your accounts aren't really monitored unless extremely
excessive activity is detected. In other words, there are No SET Usage
CAPS but they reserve the right to implement them at any time and w/o
notice to you. Some ISPs are starting to do so now and charge for
"extra" bandwidth. Much like a hosting company does.

People need to get over thinking that they can make Unlimited Long
Distance, reliable phone calls for a measly $40/yr. At least not if
you plan to abuse the system like the idiot (that filed a report with
the BBB) was trying to do, running a telemarketing scam from her
magicJack line (linked to somewhere on this site unless I found it on
another site this site links to. LOL) My guess is that the majority of
the people that had their accounts "terminated" were abusing the
system in some way or another. I quote the word "terminated" because
most accounts weren't really "terminated" but limited to incoming
calls and blocked from outgoing calls (until minutes were purchased).

As for the most of the people that complained to the BBB that their
credit cards were charged well before the 30 day "free trial" period
was over.....

Well, for the most part what's really going on is that people aren't
using REAL credit cards. They are using Debit Cards, Bank Cards, Check
Cards. These cards work differently than REAL Credit Cards (I found
out the hard way myself). What happens is when you make an online
"Free Trial" purchase with your Debit Card, the funds are put into a
"hold" status by your bank immediately. Meaning you cannot use those
funds (in case you decide to go ahead and keep your magicJack) until
you either cancel the free trial or keep the device. At which time
your funds are either released back to your main account (if you
cancel) or released to magicJack (if you keep the service).

This is NOT magicJack's fault. This is due to your banking
institutions policies.

As for the majority of overcharged complaints.... i.e. ordered 5 years
and only got 4 years in your account. Or were charged twice, etc. Part
of this depends on how you ordered. If ordering over the phone there
is huge room for human error. The fact is, that it's very easy to
accidentally click the wrong button (as a phone sales rep) when you
are rushed to take as many orders as possible, etc. Or even submit the
order twice on accident (thinking the first click didn't take, etc.).

I've worked for many telemarketing firms, both outgoing and incoming
sales and some of the scripted screens can be a bit confusing at
times, especially when you are rushed to make the sale (and upsells)
and move on to the next call. This is just a fact of life.

If ordering online... well, there's so much room for error that any
number of things could have happened to generate an "extra" charge. In
this case, it still boils down to human error one way or the other.
Either you as a customer accidentally did something during the
ordering process or there's a bug in the script. If it's a buggy
script, it boils down to a human programmer that made a buggy script
with sloppy code. From the looks of the site, I would say this is at
least partly the case for many people with problems of things ordered
but not showing up in their "my magicjack" account. Pretty much
everything about their site is poorly designed. Aside from the
marketing itself, the site really sucks bad.

This is a MUCH better designed site and lucky for Canadians, they even
have a phone support number for their customers clearly printed on the
FRONT page of their site. This is obviously run by a Canadian Partner
and not the same morons running the USA site which is seriously
lacking in quality.

So the bottom line is out of over 1.5 million units sold there are
less than 500 complaints to the BBC. Most of which are probably due to
the users not understanding the magicJack device, not reading the TOS,
not reading the FAQ and feeling sorry for themselves because they
expected to plug the magicJack into their computers and become super
heros instantly (with free unlimited long distance to boot).

And don't get me started with the idiots over at The Rip-Off Report (dot com)
(which itself isn't a very reliable source). I'm surprised that some
of these people can even figure out how to plug in their computers and
sign on to the internet. It seems most of these reports are from the
technically challenged hot heads out there that get upset extremely
easy. These are the same kind of people that expect phone support from
freeware developers. LOL

Speaking of support.....

I personally think that their chat support is just as good if not
better than most Ma-Belle companies phone support. I see people saying
things like "if you want premium support pay for premium services".
But the fact is, even then you are unlikely to get support that is
much better than the magicJack support. For example, I had Verizon for
a number of years and absolutely DREADED having to call their tech
support people (which I had to do at least once every other month, but
usually once a month or more). I had to talk to non-english speaking
people that were apparently required to avoid solving problems even at
the higher tech levels. I could never get anything done w/o talking to
a supervisor and even then usually I would have to talk to several
supervisors before my problems were addressed.

I'm assuming that much is the same at magicJack support. Let me let
you all in on a fairly well known "secret"....keep trying until you
get someone competent. If you find yourself talking to an idiot, leave
the chat session and start a new session. I can't even count how many
times I've done this with various utility companies in order to get a
billing issue resolved. If the person trying to "help" me continually
comes up with excuses and avoids solving my problems, I do one of two
things..I ask to speak to a supervisor or I simply hang up and call
back.

Funny thing is that in some cases I've found that even after a
supervisor supposedly cannot help with something, I can hang up and
call back and get a regular customer support rep to solve my problem
for me. It simply depends on who is on the other end of the phone
and/or PC. Some people don't have any desire to help others and they
only show up for a paycheck. Other people actually enjoy helping
people (like Lisa) and will jump through hoops to solve your problems
for you.

I used to do tech support for Ameritech Phone Company (are they even
around anymore) and I did everything I could to make the customer
happy. If they had some charge they didn't understand, I would explain
it in detail. If there was some service added w/o their consent, I
would remove it and credit their account, etc., etc., etc.

My supervisors apparently didn't like the fact that I was making the
Ameritech customers happy cuz they transfered me to sales of a
completely different product after monitoring some of my most helpful
calls. Fact is, the customers were happy but the Client (Ameritech)
was not because I was circumventing their little scam of adding
unauthorized services with extra fess to their customers phone bills.

For those of you that do NOT know.....Customer service is almost
always outsourced. That means when you call Verizon Tech Support, you
are talking to people that know absolutely nothing about Verizon
and/or their services. You are talking to people that are reading a
script on the PC in front of them. They can only go through the
screens the way their admin has set it up for them (usually with a
series of canned replies). That's why they very rarely address your
actually problems/questions, they can't. In fact, they aren't allowed
to if they want to keep their job. They HAVE to read the screens in
front of them. If they deviate from the scripted responses that is
grounds for termination.

That's why they always start with a series of questions about your
account, name, address, phone number and whatever is required of them
to ask you. Then, once you finally get a chance to tell them what is
wrong, they have to try to find an appropriate response(good luck) or
at least one that seems close to what your problem is.

Now obviously not ALL support is like this, but the vast majority of
it is. That's why a dozen different companies can use the same call
center to handle all of their support. The telemarketing/call center
helps their clients setup the canned replies and whatnot that the
support/telemarketing people can use to sell/support you.

So try not to get so upset at the person on the other end. It's
usually NOT their fault that they aren't allowed to help you, it's
their job to avoid solving your problems if it means losing the client
money. We are trained to make it as aggravating as possible to credit
your account or send any kind of refunds or accept any returns. That's
why most of them have different levels of support. All that really
means is that the higher level tech you talk to the more access to
your account information and/or access to change your account
information. However, on the flip side; the higher level support is
also trained more to avoid losing any money for the client. In other
words, they have more excuses to tell you why they cannot fix your
problem when really the fix is right in front of them on screen.

It takes determination to get through to the right people at times,
but it can almost always be done if you have the patience and
determination to spend the hours it takes arguing with "apparent"
morons. Most of them aren't really morons, they are just doing their
job as they were told to.

Obviously there are also just simply rude, arrogant and incompetent
support people but that is more the minority than majority. Most of
them just seem incompetent because their job requires them to act like
they are. So keep that in mind next time you feel like venting on any
customer support people.

As for magicJack chat support, I've talked to one of the support
people who was extremely polite and tried her best to be helpful
(within the limits of her job) for 2 - 3 hours. Her responses were
much the same as others I've seen pasted here and on the unofficial
support forum at: www.magicjacksupport.com

Which leads me to believe they are using scripted/canned responses as
required by whoever signs their paycheck. Fact is, I had already done
almost everything she had me do well before I even went to the chat
for support because I actually researched my problem before bothering
them.

Was my problem solved? Nope. Not even a little bit. So far, the
magicJack has been next to useless to me. The longest call I've been
able to make was 15 minutes, then dead silence. Most calls are cutoff
well before 15 minutes, usually more like 5 minutes. When some people
ring me, it says my number has been disconnected or is no longer in
service. Also, I have to reboot my PC after EACH phone call in order
to get magicJack to connect again. Restarting magicJack doesn't work
for me. This is reguardless of whether I make the call or recieve the
call. Once the call is cut off, I have to reboot.

I've only been able to make more than one call w/o rebooting once. I
was able to make several very short calls (which for once weren't
disconnected by magicJack) within an hours time or so. After which
magicJack went back to the "No network connection [error 9]" as usual.
I get error 3 and error 9 constantly. I'm lucky to stay connected for
more than 5 - 10 minutes at a time and that's only IF I don't make any
calls. If I DO make a call, then magicJack almost always loses
connection. Like I said, only one time have I been able to make more
than ONE call w/o rebooting my PC.

In fact, I haven't been able to stay connected long enough to even
setup my voice mail. Which still apparently works for some and doesn't
for others. My brother says he left a voice mail for me, but I never
got it in my email. Sometimes the number never goes to voicemail and
just rings and rings and rings (but not here just for the person
trying to call).

I'm trying to be patient, but it's starting to get on my nerves.
Especially when I hear of all the success stories of plugging it in
and it working right away. Then I got all excited thinking I would
have a similar experience when really, all I've gotten so far is
several sleepless nights, tons of frustration and a huge headache
trying to get this damn thing to work. I'm hesitant to take it back to
Radio Shack for an exchange though, cuz I have a feeling that it's NOT
the magicJack Dongel that's causing the problem. I'm guessing it's a
software issue of some sort. Something is blocking magicJack or is
simply incompatible and causing a conflict of some sort. I just don't
know what it is or where to start.

Anyway, this post isn't really asking for help unless someone can
offer some as I plan to seek help at the unofficial support forum
where I will provide much more detailed info on my specific setup and
problem, and again through the tech chat. I'm confident that
eventually, I will find someone that can and actually WILL help.

Thanks for maintaining the magicJack HUB Lisa.

[sarcasm] Now go collect your magicJack paycheck. We ALL KNOW you
REALLY work for them RIGHT? ;-) [/sarcasm]

Don't you just love how some people assume that just because you have
a positive attitude and try to help people troubleshoot their problems
that you MUST have a hidden agenda and are working directly for
magicJack?

I must be too. Because even with my aggravation, I'm hopeful that I'll
get mine working and have no intentions of getting a rufund for my
magicJack. If I do take it back it will be for an exchange for one
that does work. It's entirely possible that I just ended up with a
defective unit, but I don't think so. Even so, I'm sure Radio Shack
will exchange it if needed.

My advice to those worrying about credit card and/or debit card fraud,
etc. simply go to Radio Shack or Best Buy or similar, pay cash and
keep your packaging and reciept just in case. The main reason I went
to Radio Shack to get mine was because I didn't wanna wait for it to
arrive in the mail when there is a Radio Shack about a mile from the
house. :o)

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    • Lisa HW profile image
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      Lisa HW 5 years ago from Massachusetts

      Phonefreak, I just saw your comment and posted it in case anyone else who sees it has the answers you're looking for. I'd like to look into the issue(s) you raised here a little more because although I'm under the impression nothing in particular is needed for extra handsets (I was using them with "plain old" Magic Jack (as opposed to "Plus"), I've run into people who have said that even with "plain-old" the extra handsets need some help.

      I know this won't be the quickest reply to a comment in the world (and apologize - tonight's New Years' Eve and Monday's my daughter's birthday :) ), but I'll be back Tuesday evening or Wednesday with a better answer (hopefully) than this one.

      In the meantime, if you haven't yet done this (and I'm assuming you probably have), you may want to check with Magic Jack's online-chat people. I just tried a quick check on their FAQ section, but I'm not confident enough in what I found with such a quick check to post it here). The "knowledgebase", self-help, info section on their site is reached through www.magicjack.com/plus-v05/ (which is the Magic Jack Plus site) and by scrolling down the link at the very bottom of the page. It's the same "knowledgeabase" page as with "plain old" Magic Jack.

      I don't know if any of this is at all helpful to you. I'll be back Tuesday evening or Wednesday if I can the kind of information I'm confident enough to post here. (Wish I could be offer that right now, but it will take a little more "investigating". :) )

    • Lisa HW profile image
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      Lisa HW 5 years ago from Massachusetts

      Brandi, as far as MagicJack's being a private company goes, I don't think it's any different from anything else you may connect to your PC. The Internet providers don't "care" (at least I don't think) if you plug in a MagicJack or a Skype phone, or whatever else you may connect to your PC.

      As far as what information the MagicJack may have about customers, they say they don't share or sell information.

      www.magicjack.com/5/faq/

      I'm not under the impression, though, that MagicJack has any access to your individual, high-speed Internet account. Internet accounts require a password.

      The way MagicJack works is you can plug it into any computer you use, once the software has been downloaded into the PC. You could use it on several people's PC's with different Internet service. It's "its own separate thing" as far as phone service goes. If, for example, you have phone service from your Internet service provider, you'd have whatever that number is; and then you'd have a different number and account for MagicJack.

      Another example might be if someone didn't pay his Internet service and was using someone else's computer. The MagicJack company isn't going to do anything, like shut off service because of some unpaid Internet bill. On the other hand, if you decided to let your first year's service run out and not renew it (by paying for a second year), MagicJack just won't provide their particular service any longer. They're pretty much a pre-paid type of arrangement, so you pay for x number of years; and when it runs out you either renew or don't.

      I'm not sure if this answered your question. Feel free to clarify if I missed what you're asking. :)

    • Lisa HW profile image
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      Lisa HW 5 years ago from Massachusetts

      sami alayian,

      Below is the link to the MagicJack site page about sending MJ overseas. (The company only ships to the US, Canada, Puerto Rico, and the Virgin Islands, but their site notes that people can send the device to friends or relatives just about anywhere.) www.magicjack.com/6/faq/

      For International calls are made with prepaid International minutes. The International calling rates are shown on their site.

    • Lisa HW profile image
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      Lisa HW 5 years ago from Massachusetts

      Dr Sam Sussman, I just saw the e.mail you sent with your predicament (after already commenting above). I'm sorry. I don't know what you might be able to do if the previous owner of your MagicJack is not someone you can get in touch with.

      If anyone reading here is considering buying a second-hand MagicJack your problem is one they should be aware of.

      As someone who is nothing more than a MagicJack user (rather than someone with knowledge beyond just experience using the product), I think if I had a MagicJack that I'd bought second-hand (and didn't have the password), I'd use it in my PC without the password, let the first year free year and any additional years run out; and then just buy a new device. As it is now, the $35 to buy the device includes a free year of service. It's $20 for each additional year and, if it hasn't changed, it was $59 (and maybe change) a five-year package.

      Based on this page on MagicJack's site, you should not need a password to use the device on a different computer from the one it was originally installed in:

      www.magicjack.com/8/faq/

      If you were to contact MagicJack to try to change the password, they'd request the e.mail it was originally registered with. Here's more on that:

      www.magicjack.com/8/faq/

      I'm not necessarily recommending you do what I'd do if I were in the same situation; because, as I said, I don't know any more than you do. I've looked on their site (that, at this point, I'm fairly familiar with) and can't find anything about what they would do if someone without original information wanted to change a password.

      I assume if the device had been reported lost or stolen they'd shut off service. If a person just bought one second-hand and told the company that, I would think there must be a way (if the person were to persist) for them to ask you for identifying information (a verifiable name, address, phone number, etc.) as a way of proving you are who you say you are and that you aren't concerned if they know who/where you are. I can't help but wonder if they've already got something in place for such a situation, because people sell things they buy all the time.

      If they don't have anything in place for this type of situation, and if the device as not reported lost or stolen (and I'm assuming it wasn't, of course), I wouldn't think they'd shut off service (but, again, I'm not someone you ought to just listen to because I don't know). Worst case, maybe they wouldn't let you change the password. If you have technical problems with the device they don't require a password for you to use their troubleshooting system. If you use their live chat there's a chance they may ask for e.mail address (either to get in touch with you or, maybe, to get the records - if it were a money-related issue with the account, which it shouldn't be).

      In the approximate two years since I've had MagicJack the only time I've needed to use the password was to add my third year to it.

      Again, don't just listen to me; but if it were me, I'd live without the password unless the situation called for my producing it; and then I'd take my chances, based on the fact that I could tell the company the name of the person I'd bought the device from.

    • Lisa HW profile image
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      Lisa HW 5 years ago from Massachusetts

      ro1, Some International calls require paying for prepaid minutes. Here's their link:

      http://www.magicjack.com/4/faq/

      Some are free. This is from their site:

      Call from your magicJack from any country to the U.S. and Canada and the call is free. Call from a magicJack to a magicJack in any country and the call is free. Call from the U.S. or Canada to the U.S. or Canada and the call is free. Call from your magicJack to another country, other than the U.S. or Canada, and you must prepay for international minutes."

      weatherjack, I agree with points about their website. I know it must be a challenge for them to need to provide so much information in some way; and I think the faq should stay; but it would be good if someone could just go and get a good picture of a lot of that information by just reading from one section to another (without having to guess which "department" and then guess how to word their question). I've learned , sort of, but it should take months and frequent visits to figure out how a website "mayh work" (but even then, you're still not all that sure). It looks to me like the developers of the product left everything up to marketing people (or else left some things up to marketing people and decided to design the customer-questions part of the website on their own). It looks like someone tried to copy the way, say, ATT wireless has their website; but that site is a more professional version of the same kind of problems.

      Calling attention back to your Tech2321 reply about amplified lines on a phone system, that's a question for people more familiar with the "phone wiring/phone amplification" end of things than I am. (I just thought it was worth responding to the website issue. Over time, a person can mostly figure it out; but that's not how most professional websites work. And, it doesn't look all that professional either. :) )

    • Lisa HW profile image
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      Lisa HW 5 years ago from Massachusetts

      As far as I know, as of today (02/18/09) you may not be able to switch your landline number; but MagicJack's "knowledgebase/FAQ" section (on their site) says that you will be able to do that "sometime in 2009" for a "nominal fee".

      To see where I found that, you can go to their site, scroll way down to "FAQ/Knowledgebase", and then search "all" (categories") with "switch landline number to MagicJack". I'm not sure if the following URL will get you there or not.

      http://www.magicjack.com/7/faq/

      This is only my one, opinion; and as I've said previously on here, I've generally found MagicJack to work well; but I have to say that I'd still think a very long time before even considering getting rid of a primary landline and switching to just MagicJack. On the other hand, I wouldn't think twice about removing all "fancy" service from a landline and leaving only the cheapest, most basic, service on it - and then using MagicJack for long-distance or long-duration calls.

    • Lisa HW profile image
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      Lisa HW 5 years ago from Massachusetts

      sheyk27, I believe the best place to learn about charges related to calls from those countries would be to go to www.magicjack.com and either search their faq/knowledgebase for International calling rates; or go to their live customer chat.

      The page on their site that discusses non-US/Canada calling is: www.magicjack.com/7/faq/

      "Call from a MagicJack to a MagicJack in any country, and the call is free."

      "Call from your MagicJack to another country, other than the U.S. or Canada, and you must prepay for International minutes."

      They have their International calling rates on their sites.

    • Lisa HW profile image
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      Lisa HW 5 years ago from Massachusetts

      L-kat, you would need two Magic Jack devices for the calls to be free, and you have to call from one Magic Jack to another Magic Jack. Other than that, International calls (except for a couple of places) placed to/from one Magic Jack to a non-Magic-Jack phone would require prepaid minutes on the Magic Jack account.

      There site is the place to ask about minutes.

      www.magicjack.com/1/faq/

    • Lisa HW profile image
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      Lisa HW 5 years ago from Massachusetts

      weatherjack, maybe someone else on here has thoughts on the approach you want to try. For me, the cordless phone system I use with MagicJack had two handsets with it; so I put one in one of the bedrooms and have one on the computer desk. If I wanted to I could by a few additional handsets for other rooms. The extra handset sits in a charger, which is, of course, plugged into an outlet. The main phone has the MagicJack cable to it.

      I've heard of other people doing some version of what you're apparently doing with the 50 ft cable.

      Maybe this is my ignorance, or else misunderstanding what you want to do; but the MagicJack device needs to be plugged into your PC on one end, and then the cable runs from the MJ to the phone you're using (which essentially "establishes" your "main" MagicJack service).

      A "regular" house phone plugs into the jack/wiring that is the house's phone line (to "establish" that service). Extension phones all go to that wiring as well (with the service already "established" to the house).

      If you're going to cut off/remove the end of the wiring that goes to the line that goes to outside the house, you'd be aiming to instead hook that up to your MagicJack phone/Magic Jack "duo"? Instead, would you be aiming to hook the "extension-linked" wire to your modem?

      I would think, theoretically, a wire that links all the extensions in the house would just need to be hooked up to the Magic Jack phone/device combo. Are there adapters that allow for plugging in additional cables to a phone?

      Having posed those (again, possibly ignorant) questions, here's what I got at the MagicJack site, with regard to using MagicJack with several corded phones in the house:

      www.magicjack.com/1/faq/

      (Essentially, they say you need a phone splitter; and possibly a USB powered hub if several phones are going to be used.)

      They also recommend my approach with the cordless base and extensions.

    • Lisa HW profile image
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      Lisa HW 5 years ago from Massachusetts

      Shirley, I don't know enough about the technical aspects to be able to offer anything. Maybe someone else reading your comment does.

      I know this may be a foolish question, but have you tried going to the MagicJack FAQ/Knowledgebase and going to Troubleshooting? I'm wondering if your problem has something to do with your firewall. Two interesting sections on Troubleshooting are about firewalls and "no service available".

      Also, under "no service available" I noticed they offer a place to click for an upgrade. I got a very recent upgrade (days ago), so I'm wondering if there's a chance your device was shipped just before the upgrades of older installations went out.

      Again, maybe someone else on here will have ideas to offer.

      (The FAQ/Knowledgeable/Troubleshooting section is strange, because you search with your question and a get a handful of things back. Of course, you have to scroll way down to find them; but also, once you get to that handful of "level 1" options, it is easy to overlook that you may get brought to yet more options. The page there is poorly designed, and all the little blue letters kind of look alike. Anyway, it may be worth double-checking on that troubleshooting page to see if you may have overlooked something that could apply to you.

      As with all such pages, you have to think of the right questions to search for; but even then, if it's just easy to overlook the second level of possibilities they offer.)

      www.magicjack.com/9/faq/

    • Lisa HW profile image
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      Lisa HW 5 years ago from Massachusetts

      David: Unfortunately, no. People have tried and failed to get it working under linux. Six months ago, Magic Jack's inventor gave an interview in which he claimed they were working on Linux support, but so far there is no word of progress or whether they are even working on it at all. See their site: magicjacksupport.com/viewtopic.php?t=1341

    • Lisa HW profile image
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      Lisa HW 5 years ago from Massachusetts

      I don't really know why it wouldn't, but if you go to their site (under frequently asked questions) you'll see where you can talk to someone online, live, to ask. It probably wouldn't hurt to double-check.

      www.magicjack.com/9/faq/

    • Lisa HW profile image
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      Lisa HW 5 years ago from Massachusetts

      lchaney, I don't know if this might be the problem with the speakers or not (and I don't know how familiar with you are sound device settings on your computer, so please overlook it if I offer what could well be information you already more than know). Anyway... I'm wondering, though, if you need to double-check and make sure your audio device settings are correct (start with Control Panel, go to Hardware and Sound, and the Manage Audio Devices/Configure Audio Devices). If you have your Magic Jack Plus plugged into a USB port on your computer you need to know that your audio device settings are such that the speakers and USB port/device don't have sound coming from the same place.

      If you go to your "sound" settings you'll see there are tabs for both speakers and recording ("playback" and microphones). Then you'll see that each USB port/audio device is numbered, such as "USB/audio device 1, 2, or 3". Playback and mic settings on each one need to go to the same device. Sometimes if a person is "mucking" with adding or taking away different hardware from the PC, it can be easy to muck up the settings by accident.

      If you have something like one "playback" setting set to "handle" two different pieces of hardware (like a phone and your speakers), you can get sound going to both devices from the same place. MagicJack doesn't necessarily show up on there as anything other than "USB/audio device number _". So, one thing to check and make sure is that both "playback" and "recording" for each USB port are going to the same device - but also that neither the "playback" and "recording" settings for the other USB ports or your speakers are set to "handle" the USB port, or speakers, they're supposed to be. (Again, if this is stuff you've known for "a hundred years", please don't take it as my under-estimating your familiarity with this stuff. Just thought I'd offer my own guess just in case you haven't had much to do with audio settings.)

    • profile image

      lchaney618 5 years ago

      I just heard about the MJ Plus 2 weeks ago and ordered it online and just got it going 3 days ago and love it. I have it plugged into a receptacle and router. The only problems I have countered is if I reboot my computer and on the phone then it drops the call and the only other thing is if the computer speakers are turned on my phone does not work for some reason and I am sure there is a fix to that but have not found it yet. If anyone knows please help me with it.... I do think the MJ Plus is a great thing :)BTW I love the group you have set up Lisa and thanks for taking your time to help all of use.

    • profile image

      PhoneFreak1 5 years ago

      I just upgraded from my older version, one year plan MagicJack, to the latest and greatest MagicJack Plus! It's claim to fame is, being able to be used with or without a computer! It has a built-in IC chip that takes the place of a computer. I started using it December 8th, 2011, without the use of a computer, hooked to my broadband cable, 12 MB speed ISP connection, and then to a Uniden cordless telephone. I had some initial, minor setbacks, at first, but now that I have the bugs worked out, IT WORKS FANTASTIC! I also opted for the 5 year, extended plan, so, for roughly a $150 one time fee, I have unlimited local and long distance calls to anywhere in the USA and Canada! Not too shabby! I realize that it just came out, but I can't find any posts or comments relevant to the MJ Plus, and was wondering if there were any other folks out there in cyberspace that have the new MJ Plus and what they think of it? I would especially like to learn more about how I would go about hooking it up to my existing Ma Bell in the wall phone wires, to be able to have multiple phone extensions on the upstairs, main, and basement floors, and possibly one in the garage, as well! Do I need to get some kind of distribution amplifier, that will have enough voltage to ring all those individual phone ringers? If so, what do I ask for, and where do I purchase such a devise? Thanks for any input!

    • profile image

      stu 5 years ago

      we got 4 mj and reg them all in san Antonio TX then sent them to the Philippians an free call cuz its like local.

    • profile image

      Harry 5 years ago

      MJ for the iPhone 4....got mine and it works great. Now you don't even have to subscribe to MJ as there's a totally free option. Don't know how long that will last, but give it a try while it's available. Mine works flawlessly for 90% of my calls. Only down side to the free option is that nobody can call you back...you'll have to pay to get a new MJ subscription($40)if you want to be able to receive calls too.

    • Lisa HW profile image
      Author

      Lisa HW 5 years ago from Massachusetts

      L2T, thank you for sharing that here. I haven't yet seen anyone else mention the particular problem that you do, although it does make me wonder if it has something to do with the updating process (not that that's not more than just "theorizing", of course).

      I'm heading on my fourth year with MagicJack, and so far the updates have come through automatically and OK ("knock on wood"). Based on a form e.mail I've gotten from a list I got myself on with MagicJack, "bugs" are far from a rare complaint they get.

    • profile image

      L2T 5 years ago

      Well,first off i must say that I have had my magicjack for over 2 years. It has been a great product offering cheaper rates than everyone available. I travel all over the world and was able to remain in contact with family and friends. Currently my only issue with the magicjack is that it stop working thru my phone. I am no longer able to utilize the unit with a telephone. I have checked the website for various updates, patches or whatever may help. The online only support has assisted me several times in attempting to correct the issue. However through repeated tedious steps I found myself uninstalling then reinstalling magicjack software in order to have continuous service with a telephone. If I do not repeat this process at least once a week then I usually drop or miss phone calls altogether. Not sure if I really want to try the plus version or not.

    • profile image

      OREGAN73 5 years ago

      3 SHORT BEEPS

      when you dial a number & get a short "busy" signal for 3 rings then nothing. try adding area code. if that does not work try 1+area code. Have had that problem with land lines & Magic Jack. All the calls were in my area code.

    • profile image

      joe wilson 6 years ago

      I, like several others have calls I cannot make within my area code. Many I can make but the numbers I would call most often I just get a short "busy" signal for 3 rings then nothing. I've used the customer service and then was referred to the engineering department. I haven't received an answer from them yet. I don't understand why I can make some calls but not others.

    • profile image

      Karen 6 years ago

      Had always thought about checking out Magic Jack, and finally did three days ago. Bought it at a local Radio Shack, to avoid potential billing problems, installed it in less than 5 minutes, and it works perfectly! It's installed on a Vista system, and connected to a 4-handset Dect 6 phone system, so we can still wander around the house and outside when talking. love it

    • Lisa HW profile image
      Author

      Lisa HW 6 years ago from Massachusetts

      DC, if the person lives local but has an area code that "isn't local with" your Magic Jack area code, you can call that person but the call will be a non-local call for him.

      Depending on anyone's individual, local, calling service; there's also the potential scenario where two people who have the same area code (one person with a regular phone with it; and the other person with a Magic Jack number with the same area code) could face a similar problem with exchanges within the area code. That would be another case of the Magic Jack user having to make the call in order to avoid a toll call. (Again, though, that would depend on what someone's local service.)

    • profile image

      DC 6 years ago

      In response to comment by David 2 months ago - does this mean that anyone who lives local to me has to call "long distance" to reach me on my new magic jack number?

    • profile image

      Naveed Mir 6 years ago

      Hi.. I just started using magic jack. Can you help me one problem :

      i am unable to ignore/End incoming call (Call Ring) using my telephone handset...

      i can ignore a call using computer magic gate software but unable to do that from handset.

      Rest once i receive a call, i can end it using button.. But not when i am receiving a call and want to igonore that call.

      Please help and let me know if this something known issue.

    • Lisa HW profile image
      Author

      Lisa HW 6 years ago from Massachusetts

      Harry, thank you for taking the time to share your Mexico-MagicJack experience with readers.

    • profile image

      Harry 6 years ago

      Here's my report on MJ functionality in Mexico. I could go into a long dissertation, but to make it simple...it works like a charm in Mexico. The hotel where we stayed had high speed internet. I plugged in the 'puter, MJ and an old cordless phone...within moments was calling family in Canada as clear as you'd please. I made about 25 calls in 14 nights, had one call drop out...the rest of the calls sounded like a normal corded service. I've had MJ for 1 1/2 years and had next to zero problems. As long as high speed internet connect is available, this thing works totally as advertised. I'm not a techie, so you gotta know this is user-friendly...and CHEEEEP !I don't know of a cheaper long distance phone plan that can match free from MJ. PS; I don't work for MJ or anything like that...just impressed with their gadget.

    • profile image

      Chuck 6 years ago

      When calling some numbers in my area code, I get three harsh beeps, then nothing. This happens more often than not. No problem with numbers outside my area code.

    • snakebaby profile image

      Sabrina Yuquan Chen (陈玉泉) 6 years ago from Boston, MA, USA

      Wow, have never seen a long hub with such a loooooog list of comments, with a heavy "bomb" as a cushion. I came here because of your new hub about magic jack, something I have never heard of. This is a lot of information to absorb. I haven't read your new hub yet, but I wonder if something new has come out to compete? I'm using italkbb, $15/mo., free international calls besides domestic, so I'm not sure if magic jack still gives people special advantages?

    • Lisa HW profile image
      Author

      Lisa HW 6 years ago from Massachusetts

      Harry, thanks. It will be good for others to "get a reading" on calls from Mexico.

    • profile image

      Harry 6 years ago

      On the way to Mexico for 2 weeks in January. We're taking the mini laptop, an old cordless telephone and the MJ. This set-up has worked flawlessly for the last 18 months at home...will give a full report when we get home. I predict will work just as well there as here.

    • profile image

      Bev 6 years ago

      David, get a free Google Voice number with a local number and forward it to your magic jack number. Then it will be a local call. Good luck!

    • profile image

      David 6 years ago

      Posted 12/05/2010 - I have had MJ for 2 months now and once I got everything adjusted, works ok. But I am discusted that all my friends & neighbors have to pay for a LONG DISTANCE call every time they want to call me, even tho we are in the same city!!! Can't get a local number with MagicJack!!!

      Oh well, I will finish the year out, then junk the MJ, as TOO many people report that they go thru the 'Renewal of Service' process and MJ takes their money but terminates their service!

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      chad 6 years ago

      i have had mj for a year and a half love it got gold 5 year plan i have high speed Ethernet no problems at all but just in the last moth been having problems when calling i cant hear them they cant hear me busies single call number not available now not able to call any phone numbers in my hometown note local provider is quest/century link it is nice to see im not the only one with this problem

      went to mj chat line they are saying they are having problems with quest/century link phone company they are blocking mj from accessioning their phone numbers and want to charge mj to access them

      called quest/century link they say they are not doing that

      don't know who to believe but dealing with big companies im leaning towards mj

      i hope the courts get involved quickly cause it is illegal for the to block phone numbers

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      Ron 6 years ago

      I bought magic jack about 5 months ago and I do love it however, I found out two months ago that gmail has a set up for free calling. So I kinda wasted my money on magic jack since I could have had free calls oposed to hceap calls. I have used gmail calling before when im out on the go and it works great! Everyone should have a gmail account!

    • Lisa HW profile image
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      Lisa HW 6 years ago from Massachusetts

      jokeapptv, I agree with what you said. I recently switched my MagicJack phone from a cordless phone (with an extra handset for my grown kids' convenience if they want to use it) to a cheap, corded, phone. I think I was having some frequency issues once in a while. Anyway, now with the corded phone it sounds like I'm using the landline when I talk on it.

      I'm not saving any money with MagicJack because I have other phones. I just figured it seemed like a nifty device when I bought it, the price was reasonable, and the yearly subscription rate was too. Mostly, I liked the portability of the number business contacts have for me (even if I don't travel all that often).

    • jokeapptv profile image

      jokeapptv 6 years ago

      i got a magic jack nov2010

      I had it a week and love it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

      Im sure it's a newer version than older years. This is very very cool. i give it AAA+ But its not perfect. But if you want a cheap phone or an extra lines its a great deal. I figure ill save $2500 in just a few yrs.

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      TS 6 years ago

      Lisa,

      I appreciate your site with the good info. Have used MJ for the past nine months with excellent results but am starting to run into the following two aggravations:

      1) some outgoing called numbers now return a fast busy and no connection. (three busy tones then silence) When this happens I have used GoogleVoice on my MJ phone to connect successfully.

      2) on some incoming calls to the MJ number, they can hear me but I cannot hear them.

      MJ tech support would be a total waste of time IMO. Since I use the MJ number as the main business contact, these two situations are rather embarrasing. Have you or anyone on the site, heard or experienced this problem? Any ideas or resolutions would be appreciated.

    • Lisa HW profile image
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      Lisa HW 6 years ago from Massachusetts

      barknfour, thanks for sharing here. I have a family member who is planning to change her "top of the line" landline service to a far cheaper landline service; and then she's going to use MagicJack for all her long-distance calls. She says she's sick of paying "top of the line" money for a service she doesn't use often anyway. She's keeping a prepaid cell phone too.

      I think a lot of people are doing that kind of thing. A prepaid cell phone that has "roll over" minutes (which most do, as long as someone adds money before x number of days expires) means a person can add $15 or $20 a month, let some minutes build up, and have a pretty good cell phone for emergency, or at least "conservative" use.

      I, personally, lean toward keeping a minimal landline service because a long power failure can mean no MagicJack and eventually no cell phone charging. I did install MagicJack on my laptop (besides my desktop), which can get online using a smart phone. Smart phone batteries do run down, though; so do laptop batteries.

      I just kind of like the idea of having as many emergency phone options as possible. If a storm knocks out the power, there's the landline and cell phones (for awhile). If trees knock out the phone line, there's cell phones and MagicJack. If some major storm knocks out both the landline and power, a laptop with MagicJack and a smart phone might offer another few hours' worth of emergency phone calls. ("Paranoid" and "OCD", I suppose, but I just like all the back-ups. LOL )

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      barknfour 6 years ago

      After reading the info here, I still decided to try MJ. I don't make lots of phone calls and am tired of paying ATT 45 a month for basic service. Seems like most people that don't like MJ, feel that for 20 a year the service should be same as 45 a month. I have had same problems with regular phone companies. At least with the savings, I can have a prepaid cell handy and still save money. Thrilled....or maybe just stupid....

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      Kelly K 6 years ago

      Majic Jack - Magic Jack LP

      5700 Georgia Avenue

      west Palm Beach Florida 33405

      United States of America

      Phone: 561-594-2140

      Web Address: Magicjack.com

      Category: Telephone Companies

      Submitted: Tuesday, August 03, 2010

      Posted: Tuesday, August 03, 2010

      I spent 5 months dealing with magic jack and get lied to over and over again to get my money back.

      i then contacted the BBB in florida and i got my refund $$ in 2 days - YEAH - Full refund

      the BBB in florida had problems with web site so i downloaded a form and filled it out and faxed it and mailed it to them. I never even talked to anyone at the BBB.

      they are located at: www.seflorida.bbb.org

      BBB of Southeast Florida and the Caribbean

      4411 Beacon Circle, Suite 4

      West Palm Beach, Fl 33407

      Phone : 561-842-1918

      they have received thousands of complaints on:

      Magic Jack LP

      5700 Georgia Avenue

      West Palm Beach, FL 33405

      561-594-2140

      I hope anyone that wants there money back gets it from the company.... GOOD LUCK

      Fax : 561-845-7234

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      brad 6 years ago

      when it works it works well but the design of the product is bad.. just hanging out of computer for cat or kid to pull and break..very bad customer support that are trained to say "no" no matter what you request and always have the same solution no matter what your problem is. but for 20 bucks a year you just get over the flaws...but NEVER depend on it always have a cell or a landline because its good service but does not work 100% of the time and if you got kids you need it to work 100% of the time.

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      decided 6 years ago

      You have to go into your power settings on the laptop. Hibernate; never. Sleep; never.

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      Undecided 6 years ago

      Thanks Lisa. I'm not in a huge hurry, so if you get around to experimenting soon I'd be interested in hearing what you find out!

    • Lisa HW profile image
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      Lisa HW 6 years ago from Massachusetts

      Undecided, it's odd that you should bring this up, because just last week I decided to install my MagicJack on a netbook. I didn't try a phone with it, though, because the phone battery wasn't charged. So, all I did was connect the MagicJack, watch the software download (easily and successfully to the Window XP netbook, and then see an immediate upgrade come through).

      Of course, I was using my netbook with a Blackberry as a tethered modem (so hooking up the MagicJack for phones calls seemed kind of ridiculous at the time - but I just wanted to know the software was in, in case we ever have a power failure).

      Anyway, later today I'll hook up a phone and do a little more experimenting with what happens when. I do know you do need the Internet connection. I don't have access to a wireless router when I use the laptop (so that may be different than what you have in mind). (We have a bunch of security on the wireless "situation" because of working for companies from home; which is why, when I'm home, I use the Blackberry (if I use the laptop at all).

      Anyway, I'll do a little playing around with it (such as it is) later and come back to report any "findings". I don't know if it will be too late for you to want to bother waiting for the answer or not (or if not using the wireless router makes a difference for you). If you don't want to wait for an answer, maybe someone else will benefit from it. (I have to work outside the house today, so I won't be back to "play around with it" until after dinner or later.)

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      Undecided 6 years ago

      I have read through all of the posts here and there is not much related to MJ use on a laptop, other than "yes, it will work." My question is this: does anyone know what happens when the laptop is sleeping/hibernating/whatever? It seems that anytime I open the lid on my laptop (which is currently connected to my cable modem via a wireless router), the internet isn't connected immediately (though it does reconnect again within seconds). Which makes me think that if it's not connected to the internet when the lid is shut, it wouldn't be able to receive calls and they would go straight to voicemail. This, of course, defeats the point of having a phone number so people can call you! I have read a few comments about people using old laptops and attaching MJ and then sticking them in the closet and never using them, so maybe my concern is unjustified. I might just have to go get one and do my own experiment, but wanted to see if any readers (or Lisa) had any insight before I run out and buy. Thanks!

    • Lisa HW profile image
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      Lisa HW 6 years ago from Massachusetts

      Justin, thank you for sharing your experience with readers. Just last weekend (I don't know why I waited months to try this), I put the MagicJack from my PC on the my mini-laptop, just to see how it was. The mini has XP (my "real" computer has Vista). It was fine. In fact, as soon as I installed the MagicJack software the upgrade happened. I have no real plans to use the MagicJack on that little laptop, but it's good to know that if, for some reason, I ever did, I could.

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      Justin 6 years ago

      I'd like to share my experience with this indeed magical device. I cannot believe how great it is, I really can't. I've had my magicJack since June and it is my main phone line which I use every day and it is beyond incredible. $20 a YEAR! Before buying my magicJack, I had my iPhone on T-Mobile unlocked, which was my primary phone line. I paid almost $100 a month and then, I found out two of my friends had owned magicJacks for a couple of months and loved them. That's how I found out. I ordered one and I admit, I couldn't stand having to keep my laptop (MacBook) on all the time just to use the magicJack, but the quality and service was so good that I decided to replace my T-Mobile service with it. So, what I did was go on eBay and buy on old Toshiba Tecra laptop with Windows 98 on it for $40, upgrade it to Windows XP and hook my magicJack up to it, then close the lid and pop it in the closet and run a phone cord to my Uniden cordless phone. The Tecra uses very little power since it's a laptop and the screen is always off, and I always have a 100% reliable high quality phone line to use, my magicJack. The call quality is actually BETTER then my T-Mobile service! I still have the T-Mobile service but I downgraded it to prepaid and only use it when I'm not home, I've set my magicJack line as my main phone number and use it every single day and love it. I HIGHLY recommend this incredible device to anyone who calls people! This is one of the most amazing things I have ever seen in my life.

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      jp 6 years ago

      Why will my computer not go into power savings mode when magic jack is on? It did when I first started using the magic jack.

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      ARCHIE 6 years ago

      Apparently Matt is as full of BS as Magic Jack's chat room people are full of not knowing what they are talking about.

    • Lisa HW profile image
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      Lisa HW 6 years ago from Massachusetts

      thenana, thanks for sharing here. I'm not at all familiar with using (or trying to "mix") conference lines. I think your best bet would be to use MagicJack's life-chat line to ask. I wish I could be helpful here, but since I don't exactly know what you're trying to do I'd be afraid to try being a "middleman" by going to their Live-Chat, myself.

      Someone else who reads here may know, but there's no way to know that someone will see your post soon enough to get you a quick enough response.

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      thenana 6 years ago

      I've just purchased my MJ and love the ease of plugging it in and using the phone. I am curious though why I can't access my existing conference lines. I do not want to use the conference lines available through MJ. Is there a way around this? Also, is there 3-way calling available if I initiate the calls. I've tried but it doesn't seem to work.

    • Lisa HW profile image
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      Lisa HW 6 years ago from Massachusetts

      sai prasad, I'm not clear on what your situation is. It looks like your comment may have been cut off; so I'll just kind of guess about the form you mention:

      When you first get a MagicJack you have to first connect it to your PC. The first thing that happens is that software starts to download. After that you can set up your account with the MagicJack company, the way you set up an account with any company. There's the form and the request for an e.mail address (so they can contact you if they need to, or if you contact their customer service). You establish a password just for your MagicJack account, and then if you wanted to do something like add International minutes or pay for another year's subscription (etc.) you'd sign in to your account and do whatever you want to do. I've had the MagicJack for a couple/fews years now. I think I've only needed to sign in to my account, maybe, three times (to do something like add another year of service).

      If you bought your MagicJack second-hand you could run into a problem trying to get into the account. I wrote about it above.

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      sai prasad 6 years ago

      i had bought my magicjack recently.......

      now its showing to fill a form which as email & password

      since i did nt create any them ......

    • Lisa HW profile image
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      Lisa HW 7 years ago from Massachusetts

      GregM, thank you for sharing that with others here.

    • Lisa HW profile image
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      Lisa HW 7 years ago from Massachusetts

      Wendy, the person who buys the Magic Jack gets the device for the price of the device, and then pays the annual charge for domestic calls. Domestic calls are all calls within the US, Canada, and the Dominican Republic. Calls to any domestic phone are free (although I guess there's a top limit for number of calls if someone does something like use an automatic phone-dialer to make tons of calls, as for business purposes). Under normal use, the calls are free once the annual charge is paid.

      Who may end up paying something would be people calling the Magic Jack user, if they're calling from an area code that would be a toll call to the area code assigned to the receiving party's Magic Jack device.

      All calls (incoming or outgoing) from one Magic Jack to another are free.

      If a person buys a Magic Jack the device is assigned a phone number, based on the area it will be used. (I got to pick from a handful of numbers.) Magic Jack has said that it will be possible for people to "transport" their home phone number to Magic Jack "for a small free". To the best of my knowledge, that's still not something people can do. (I could be wrong.)

      If you had a Magic Jack, and you still had your land-line number, people could still call that. Or, they could call the Magic Jack's number. They're two different ways to receive calls.

      So, you wouldn't be charged for incoming calls with Magic Jack. The only one who may may be charged would be someone calling you. In fact, if someone who calls you now without being charged can call your landline because it's within their area, there's the chance a difference area code with the Magic Jack might end up resulting in their getting toll charges if they call your Magic Jack.

      Having a Magic Jack doesn't mean anything will change with your land-line number (unless you were to decide to get rid of it). Your land-line could still be used as always if you want. What happens with Magic Jack is you can plug in a separate phone (but a "regular" one, no different from the kind you'd buy to use with a land-line). What makes that different from some VOIP ("computer") phones/calling services is that with those you need a VOIP phone. With Magic Jack you just use a "regular" phone. Or, you could temporarily use your land-line phone with Magic Jack (but if you did that you wouldn't have a phone to make or receive calls through the land-line, of course). Still, if you had someone you wanted to talk to long-distance, it wouldn't be a big deal to temporarily unplug your land-line phone just to save the long-distance charges by using Magic Jack. (I just bought a second "regular" phone, with additional handsets, so I could leave the Magic Jack set up as a second phone service.)

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      Wendy 7 years ago

      Why do your incoming calls have to go through Magic Jack? Why can't people just call your regular land line phone number. I don't get charged for incoming calls. Thank you!

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      GregM 7 years ago

      Our Magic jack does not work from China to the USA to anything except Cellular phones.

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      TS 7 years ago

      Been using MJ about 6 months with no complaints, except, starting about mid July, when I call a 724 area code number, I get a fast busy. I have not experienced this with any other area code number. Anyone have a problem like this or know a solution. Thanks

    • Lisa HW profile image
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      Lisa HW 7 years ago from Massachusetts

      Wenzel, thank you for taking time to share here.

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      Wenzcl 7 years ago

      I also had my magicJack suspended for going over the call volume customer service sucks I asked was in the chat for over an hour trying to find out what it was that was wrong they just kept referring me back to paragraph 6 in the terms of service. Checked my call log 17 calls in one day thats both incoming and out going call together when I advised them of this they told me I was not truthful. I told them look for yourself they refused said it was my problem and they terminated the chat had it for 2 years but never again would not recommend this to anyone after this experience Lousy customer service and very rude no way to complain

    • Lisa HW profile image
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      Lisa HW 7 years ago from Massachusetts

      madgramma, thanks for sharing your experience here. I know that I was unaware of any limit of outgoing calls a day until someone else something about it. If I recall the package correctly (and I ordered it online awhile back), I don't recall there was much by way of that kind of information at all on the package either.

      Thanks again for posting this information. I think I'll come back later and post a note about it higher on the page, to call it to the attention of anyone considering buying a MagicJack.

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      madgramma 7 years ago

      I bought my magicjack at CVS because I needed it quick! Nowhere does it say anything about any limits on any calls until you start to install it-then say you can't make more than 50 outbound calls a day-what, that is exactly what I bought it for! And when I did accidentally go over they suspend the service. Customer service sucks!! Only way to ever get outbound calling again is to buy a new device-heck no. so now have a useless $40 Device and service that is supposed to be good for a year. Oh and the chat room is very scripted-no matter what I asked-they gave the same response and when I said I wanted to speak to someone higher up, they ended the chat session.

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      Brandi 7 years ago

      Does using MJ allow the company acces to my internet accounts??? I am thinking about purchasing a Magic Jack, but am unaware of exactly how it works. Also does the fact of MJ being a private company affect anything?

    • Lisa HW profile image
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      Lisa HW 7 years ago from Massachusetts

      Klaus, I can't speak for anyone else here; but I leave the MagicJack connected at all times. I'm on my third year now. and I've only had, maybe, 4-6 calls (those recording trying to sell car warranties)in all that time. That was awhile back, and I put the number on the Do Not Call List. I haven't gotten any calls like that now in ages.

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      Klaus 7 years ago

      Does connecting with a magicjack lead to unwanted phonecalls or e-mails from advertisers?

      Klaus

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      Lee S 7 years ago

      Ive used Magic Jack for the past year and a half and for the price you cant go wrong with it. I use mine mainly for a fax line ( had problems at first with it not faxing more then 2 pages but replaced my router and works great now ), the call quality is good. Now my only complaints about Magic Jack is having to dial 1 and the area code to make a call even if your dialing in the same area code as yourself. sometimes I have to dial the number multiple times to get the call to go through. The other complaint I have is if you have a phone that has the voicemail indicator on the base, the indicator dont work. so if you dont check your email you wont know you have a voicemail. Wish they would get that to work or at least make your dialtone beep when you have a voicemail.

    • Lisa HW profile image
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      Lisa HW 7 years ago from Massachusetts

      Papa B, thank you for sharing your own experience (and a late "Happy Father's Day"). Good point about the local-phone exchange issue. I agree that it's a point they "may want to bring up" in their ads, particularly when using the "replace-your-phone-company" approach.

      I don't really use my Magic Jack number for friends and family. I use is it mostly for business-type calls (with other people's usually having an 800/866 number and my not worrying about whether it costs them to call me LOL). I actually do think I should find out the details about who might be charged for calling me.

      Thanks for giving others a "heads up" on that one. (It's nice that your Magic Jack works OK, though. A Father's Day gift that didn't work well would have been kind of crummy. :) )

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      Papa B 7 years ago

      Dear Lisa, As a follow-up to a previous post, I dropped a few hints and got one for Fathers' Day. I am please to say everything worked as advertised, with a couple glitches in registration and getting a phone number. I am making calls to beat the band. Excellent call quality and no drops yet.

      Now my COMPLAINT and ADVICE to those considering a purchase.

      Try to find out if a LOCAL exchange telephone number is available where you are, and good luck. I live in Huntington WV (the 2nd largest city in WV). A local MJ number is not available. This means any local friends or relatives wanting to call me on my magic jack number must make and pay for a LONG DISTANCE CALL!!!???. It is in the same area code but still long distance. Magic Jack doesn't include this tidbit of information in their advertising. Nor are they willing to part with the info on their "live chat" website. They gladly say what area codes are available but NOT what cities/exchanges are available within the area code. This information only becomes available when you "register" the MJ and get your phone number. So if you are expecting to replace your existing phone service with a MJ, it may not happen as you expect. The largest city in WV, Charleston, also does not have MJ local numbers.

      Good thing they have that 30 day money back deal.

      Regards, Papa B.

    • Lisa HW profile image
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      Lisa HW 7 years ago from Massachusetts

      Susan B, I think your best bet would be to contact their "online chat"/customer service; and see if they can identify the problem and/or help you. With your computer connected to their live-chat they're able to run a few checks on some of the "connection-type" things. I wish I could be more help, but maybe someone else who reads here will have had experience with the kind "set-up" you've described.

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      Susan B 7 years ago

      I just installed MJ yesterday and within 1 minute of making a phone call the call was dropped. I cant make any calls without MJ dropping them. I have DSL without phone (Dry Loop. I have the MJ plugged into a laptop with WinXP. Does anyone have any suggestions as to what I can do about this problem?

    • Lisa HW profile image
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      Lisa HW 7 years ago from Massachusetts

      Kevin,

      aggervated,

      Chessgames,

      Thank you for sharing your experience/tips here.

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      chessgames56 7 years ago

      Two other tidbits of advice might help. If you plug into your house wiring make sure to:

      1) Disconnect the lines coming into your house at the phone box outside (don't know how? Google it). Generally, it only involves unplugging two RJ11 plugs.

      2) Make sure to surge protect the line running from your MJ Dongle to the wall jack.

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      chessgames56 7 years ago

      I said that I use XP Pro with all my lines, except one that runs off of Windows 7. There is a special update at the Magic Jack site for those who are using Win 7. So far, I have now issues with the service using that operating system.

    • profile image

      chessgames56 7 years ago

      Got a 3rd Magic Jack last week, and I love this nifty device. Mind you, I'm a computer tech, and run each line on a separate system. One system is connected to the big TV; It's running windows 7 and works fabulously with my New MJ. Yes, the MJ dialpad does pop up from time to time. I waited to get rid of my Voip.com service once MJ became more reliable. Early on calls were quite choppy. Another problem that occurs is an occasional beeping sound (on my end during a conversation, which is not a call waiting), but that doesn't bother me much. Another thing that will make a big difference is your broadband bandwidth. Note that you have a decent upload speed. A lot of broadband services seem to have great download speeds, but insufficient upload speeds. Also, a wired connection is generally better than a wireless one, though Magic will work with either. Also, if you use your main PC for your MJ phone line, there may be software conflicts. Once the version of Nero I used conflicted with MJ.

      I don't believe, as one poster cited, the speed of the computer matters as much, unless of course, it's an ancient dinosaur. My son has his own MJ phone which runs flawlessly off an old 800 mhz Celeron with 300 megs of ram. That said, only a home web server and MJ run off of that computer. I only use XP Pro with MJ, so I cannot comment on how it performs with earlier Windows systems.

      One clear advantage over SKYPE, IMV, is the ability to plug MJ directly into a phone jack (use a splitter, if you need to plug in a phone there as well), and power up all the phone jacks in your house, meaning you can use it just like you would AT&T, and ring in any room of your choosing. Another limitation I've found is the number of phones that can ring at once. You'll have to experiment here because some ringer need more juice to ring than others.

      Presently all 3 of my MJ phone lines work great. My son talks to his GF all the time on it without issue. With the 5 year plan I bought at about 60 buck, the cost comes to a dollar per month (plus the cost of electricity to run my computers, both of which are relatively old slow ones.

      With all these benefits, and the ease of acquiring a MJ device, what do you have to lose by trying it? Just make sure you have a decent broadband connection.

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      aggervated 7 years ago

      Do not buy this. My mother bought it for me as a gift, and after not even 6 months using it, the soder INSIDE broke. Outside was in great condition, but they didn't mold it right when putting it together and it came loose. She had paid for the 5 year plan, and it is now useless unless I want to pay $20 for shipping to get antoher one that will just fall apart on me. When I questioned the price of shipping (since my mom only paid $6.95) they said that I was buying a whole new device. That is expensive to me for something that is going to break that easily/soon. They wont do a refund since it has been activated, and there is no one other that 'support' that you can talk to. USELESS

    • profile image

      Kevin 7 years ago

      I've read Matt's critique below and he's spot on about outsourced customer service and Magic Jack. I've had MJ for about three months now as my primary phone (setup: iMac, 802.11n WiFi, cable modem with 15mps down, 2 mbps up). Works fine for me. I cancelled my optimum voice and use MJ along with my iPhone. But, read Matt's review below. I had to rely on the MJ FAQ to resolve two minor mistakes I made during setup.

    • Lisa HW profile image
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      Lisa HW 7 years ago from Massachusetts

      Emma, the best people to really answer your questions on International use would be the Live-Chat people at the MagicJack site (http://www.magicjack.com). If you scroll up a few comments, you'll see "Donna's" question about using MagicJack in Europe, as a resident of Europe.

      From what I've been told, all MagicJack to MagicJack calls are always free. Any MagicJack that isn't "associated with" an address in the US, Canada, or the Dominican Republic would require using prepaid International minutes (which are very reasonable, but which are separate from the "standard", per-year/per-five-years domestic account.

      I think you need to do the online chat with the people at Magic Jack and discuss your plans for using it with them. There's a difference between the person who lives here and sends his family in Europe a MagicJack, so they can talk to him (on theirs); and a person who lives in Europe and will use the device in Europe only. I'd try to double-check or find out for sure for you, but I'm just starting my work-day here.

      Recently, they've been fairly quick with their Live Chat feature, so I do think you go to their site and first find out whether you'd even have to pay either the annual or "five-year" plan fee at all, on top of the prepaid International minutes (that you would need). I do know that calls to non-MagicJack phones in Europe would be made with prepaid International minutes.

      I'd urge you to contact MagicJack as soon as possible, in case anything needs to be straightened out. Have your order number and any e.mails between you and MagicJack ready when you contact them.

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      Emma 7 years ago

      Hi Lisa I am from Amsterdam and I have a question for you cause I have seen that you are very nice with everybody...I have ordered magic Jack from america and I want to use it here in my country.My question is I have choose the 5 year way with 70 dolars..do I have to pay more for international calls or in this money I have all calls unlimited?

    • Lisa HW profile image
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      Lisa HW 7 years ago from Massachusetts

      Miguel, thank you for sharing your own "take" on Magic Jack. (I'm interested in knowing more about the "cell-phone-Magic Jack" too.) I'd like to read your comment more carefully when I have a little more time, so I'll be back with any responses later.)

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      Miguel 7 years ago

      I was looking for news on the femto jack (majic jack for cell phones) and I came with this site.

      First I would like to ask if anyone has heard on a hard date on when that is going to be available?

      BTW it will only work with GSM phones so Verizon/ATT users will be out of luck.

      Now let me share my MJ experience as my contribution to this hub.

      I have my MJ since the begining (before it was available everywhere) we did sign up for the 6 year plan (no phone-bill for 6 years!!!!) and it's been about 2 years ago that we first got it.

      So these are the problems we experienced and our work arounds answers for them.

      P) Every now and then, the quality degrades. voice gets choppy and sometimes garbled.

      A) Our computer was old, on reboot MJ was back with clear voice. So what we did is reboot our computer every-morning and the problem was solved.

      A2) We do need to get a better computer with more memory. as soon as many applications are running and the computer has to go to the disk drive to swap programs memory in and out of the harddrive the voice quality of the MJ goes down the tube. Getting more memory if possible for your system will help incredibly, specially if you have Vista, you shouldn't run it with less than 4GB for Vista or 2GB for XP. And that depends what kind of programs you usually run and how much memory they require. i.e. photoshop, video editing software etc require a lot of memory so you MJ will degrade.

      P) The pop-up drove my wife crazy, also there are reports of spyware and malware, or at least MJ seems to collect where you been around on the internet (only trends, no personal information) so that they can sell that to companies that need to know consumer trends.

      A) We don't go to weird sites so i'm fine with MJ knowing our trends, but the pop-up had to be alivieated, so we created a majic jack account and once MJ is up and running on that account, we do a switch-user so that pop-up window never appears.

      A2) Also at one time I did setup the MJ software as a service so it will start up even without logging in. how to do that is a bit technical and i didn't write down the procedure, but it's doable, maybe you can google "setting magic jack as a service windows xp" or "vista" or "windows 7" for that matter will give you a step by step instructions on how.

      I've also heard about people worried about what MJ will do with the phones # you call using the MJ, are those numbers stored on a database and sold?.

      One thing is clear, since we got that number we haven't got a single telemarketing call on that line. So they seem to care a lot about privacy and I do believe they are very trustworthy on not selling numbers called to others, or your specific buying trends with your MJ phone number.

      The selling only of browsing trends not associated with your actual name or MJ number seems to be the only thing they do. But if you create a 2nd user account just for MJ then no trends will be recorded. (And no pop-up neither)

      I hope this helps others :)

      Peace!

    • bankruptcyjoe profile image

      bankruptcyjoe 7 years ago from Arizona, The Sunshine State!

      Bonnie -

      From what I can tell, that would make sense, because the magicJack does power itself from the USB. Although, that's kind of lame of HP to not supply enough power from their motherboard for it. I wonder if there is some type of plug-in or update you can get out there? I'm sorry I can't be of more help, but I believe this site has something about the USB problem on it: http://www.magicjackspoker.com/

      It might be a good idea to put a call into your support team for the laptop you have, if you're thinking of running it on there.. just to see if they've heard of anyone having problems. I've burned motherboards out before and it's definitely a pain in the ... you know! Good luck though, I've had my magic jack for almost a year now, on my main desktop, so far so good!

    • Lisa HW profile image
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      Lisa HW 7 years ago from Massachusetts

      Bonnie, that's not something I've heard of; and I'm all that tech-savvy either. Maybe someone else here has something to offer. Other than that, I'll do some research and see what I find. It may take until after the weekend, though.

      Interesting matter. Thank you for raising it.

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      Bonnie Griffith 7 years ago

      I have read quite a few reviews about MJ. One I read was from someone using a laptop. They reported the power source (I am not computer savy, so my terms may not be right)burned out and HP said the MJ was too powerful for the power source and the mother board would have to be replaced. Can you sort this out for me? I only have a wireless laptop.

    • Lisa HW profile image
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      Lisa HW 7 years ago from Massachusetts

      nelson, to the best of my knowledge all cell phones have to pay for all calls. It's the person making the call from MagicJack who benefits (unless he calls another MagicJack). Of course, I'm not familiar with cell phone providers in countries other than the US. Maybe someone here will correct me if I'm wrong.

    • profile image

      nelson 7 years ago

      Hi,when I use magic jack to call a cell phone in another country ,is free for both or the cell phone receiving the call have to pay for the minutes?

    • Lisa HW profile image
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      Lisa HW 7 years ago from Massachusetts

      Donna, if you brought it to Europe after buying it in the US, or if you were to have someone send you one from the US, yes. It would have a "US-based" number, and, to the best of my understanding, would require International calling minutes to cover calls to countries outside the US, Canada, and Dominican Republic that would then be "free" (minutes already paid for). Magic Jack to Magic Jacks calls are always free.

      For the person who lives in Europe and is considering using Magic Jack for domestic ("domestic" for Europe, not "domestic" in terms of US/Canada calls) calls - it wouldn't be a service/device that person could use the way he needed to.

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      Donna 7 years ago

      Can you use it in Europe???

    • Lisa HW profile image
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      Lisa HW 7 years ago from Massachusetts

      Dathena, thank you.

      The people at Magic Jack DON'T recommend trying to use Magic Jack with alarm systems and that type of thing. Apparently, it would work if Magic Jack were working properly. I'm guessing that a landline, which isn't affected by power failures, is more reliable. I don't know if there are other factors that go into their not recommending using it this way. Magic Jack recommends people discuss this with their alarm company.

      If you have other questions about it you could go try going to the Magic Jack live chat at http://www.magicjack.com.

    • profile image

      Dathena 7 years ago

      This has been the most informative place for magic jack information.

      The only reason I'd like a landline is so that I can "buzz" people into my apartment building, as I have to let 20 people in every Sunday night for a meeting, and I live on an upper level floor.

      The system to let people in goes through landlines.

      Will Magic Jack work for this purpose? Has anyone else used it for this amongst their other phone calls?

    • Lisa HW profile image
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      Lisa HW 7 years ago from Massachusetts

      John B, a lot of people seem to feel most comfortable getting it at a retailer. My problem was I ordered over the phone, which left a little "iffiness" when it came to knowing exactly which number to press to avoid express delivery. I've been to their site often enough that I don't think there would be any particular issue ordering online, where you have the time to look and read and see what you're opting for.

      The one thing to pay attention to is the date the device is shipped. Based on what others have said here, apparently they start counting the 30 days from the day it's shipped, rather than the day you install it. (That may have changed, but it's something to watch out for.) Then, too, there's making sure which date they expect to have it back by in order for the 30-day refund.

      I'm not entirely positive about where it gets returned to a store. It seems to me I've heard it can be returned to the store, but I'd double-check with whatever store you're considering buying it from. Based on my own experience returning things (unrelated to Magic Jack), I'm not sure each store doesn't have a different "deal" when it comes to returning Magic Jack. (I have two family members who bought Magic Jack at stores, but both have kept theirs.)

    • profile image

      John B 7 years ago

      Lisa HW Thanks for your effort. I am encouraged, based on your test, that MJ MIGHT get a dial tone in under 2 seconds. Even a little improvement makes a big difference. I will try it under the 30 day free trial and see if my redial machine can get a higher redial rate. If it does not I will return it because I will have no other use for it. Am I better off ordering it on-line or via phone if I decide to return it within the 30 day trial period? How do I return it so that I am not charged?

    • Lisa HW profile image
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      Lisa HW 7 years ago from Massachusetts

      John B, because your question related to something so "precise", I think your best bet would be contact the Live Chat people at http://www.magicjack.com

      Of course, maybe someone who reads here may have the exact answer to your question, but I'm not sure the "right" person will see your question soon enough to suit you.

      Out of curiosity, I just tried to find out how long it takes on my MagicJack phone. It's probably worth mentioning that if the MagicJack soft phone is not already on the screen (in other words, if you have to open it), there's whatever time is involved in first getting the MJ screen open. On my PC it appears to be close to immediate when I open it, but I can see how it could vary (if even by a fraction of a second) from machine to machine.

      (I have high-speed Internet and Vista.)

      Having already opened the MagicJack soft phone/screen, I started there, trying to get an exact time to get a dial tone. At first I tried the "one-thousand-and-one" counting approach to seconds. Using that, it's pretty clear to me that my particular phone takes less than 2 seconds.

      Then I tried using my cell phone's stopwatch. Keep in mind that it's 2 a.m. where I am, so I may not be at my quickest (as far as getting both hands to start the cell phone stop-watch and the phone dial tone at absolutely the precise fraction-of-a-second goes - and also as far as making my phone ear/brain work at the same time as I was watching the fraction-of-a-second numbers fly by go LOL).

      Keeping that in mind, what I've gotten (and again, this is only one PC, one MagicJack, and one phone) is under 2 seconds. It's impossible for me to make the ear, brain, and eyes all work fast enough to get the fraction-of-a-second measure. Again, keep in mind that I had already opened the MagicJack screen on my monitor.

      In view of the fact that your question relates to the redial machine and requires precision, I'm thinking someone who can give you technical information at MagicJack may be the person to ask.

      (By the way, and in case it matters at all, I was using a Linksys CIT 300 (which I find to be a great phone compared to a lot of other phones) dual telephony phone with one line hooked in to Skype and the other line connected to Magic Jack.

    • profile image

      John B 7 years ago

      I am looking for a way to redial as fast as possible. I have a very fast redial machine connected to my land line phone and it does a good job but it would be much better if my phone connection would get a dial tone faster. My land line takes about 2 seconds to get a dial tone. So my question is how long does it take MJ to get a dial tone? I have DSL and Vista.

    • Lisa HW profile image
      Author

      Lisa HW 7 years ago from Massachusetts

      KA, it seems to me as if a lot of people have opted to buy MagicJack from a retailer (now that it's available) for the same reason you mentioned. It seems like a good idea to me, particularly since my call to the infomercial line (to order) resulted in some misunderstanding about express shipping.

      Based on a live-chat with the MagicJack people, that 911 icon is apparently a live one. Accidentally hitting it on the screen will apparently reach a 911 operator.

      It was pointed out that the icon is below all the numbers (although I, personally, think it's a little close to the zero), so hitting it by accident shouldn't be a big risk.

      I don't use the screen for the making calls, so I didn't even realize that icon is even there. I did read that green indicates they have the location.

      As far as whether it would show up on the call log goes, I don't know. Maybe someone else reading here knows that. I think I'll check with the MagicJack live-chat Monday.

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      KA 7 years ago

      I am in Canada and bought a Magicjack at a store and paid in cash to avoid worrying about extra charges caused by ordering with a credit card online or by phone. I'd recommend going this route as it is available at several major retailers and you don't have to wait for shipping :)

      Question:

      I am absolutely terrified that my Magicjack will call 911 by accident. When I registered I picked a 646 area code (NY area because I have friends and family there, and for them it would be a local call to call me) but when it asked for my address I provided my correct Canadian address. On the Magicjack window that shows up on my screen, the 911 icon is black/grey and says beside it ">>Non US address, 911 disabled" but when I log in on my.magicjack.com, it shows a green icon and says that my location has been verified and everything is good. I contacted the online support about possibly changing my registered address to a "dummy" address such as listing a "00000" zip code and street address called something like "disable 911 access" etc. but the rep just asked me to add a new location (which my account will not let me do). I suppose I have to be content that my info is saved somewhere on the account (which I guess probably won't be an issue unless Magicjack extends 911 support into Canada).

      However, I guess right now I am wondering if there is any way that Magicjack might accidentally dial 911? I know that I won't dial it from my phone, but on the window that pops up on the screen, is that 911 icon also a link to dial? I worry that I may click the icon by accident and if it is a "panic" button of sorts that dials 911 for you, then that would be bad. Can anyone confirm or deny this from personal experience? I clearly don't want to test it out. Also, if 911 was dialed accidentally, it would show up in the on screen call log, right?

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      sami alayian 7 years ago

      I wont to know if i sent a majic jack to pilepeen can they use it ther or no

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      Don 7 years ago

      I've been using magic jack for 2 years now, and it's AWESOME. I don't know why anyone would give this a bad review. Especially if they are smart enough to use it properly. It's saved me more money than anything ever has, and it works great.

    • Lisa HW profile image
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      Lisa HW 7 years ago from Massachusetts

      Dorothy, I wish I were qualified to help, but - sorry to say this - I think the customer-service people are your best bet. Maybe someone else on here has some experience to offer. If it were a matter of not hearing who calls or them not hearing you it might be more related to your audio settings (which, as you may know, need to be set for any device/program).

      Before I make some fairly uneducated guesses, one question is whether you've tried the troubleshooting section of their "FAQ/knowledgebase" feature. If you search for "troubleshooting" (if it's not right there) you'll find it. From there, there are questions about the problem and things you can try to fix it.

      If it was your phone that isn't working your calls would come through and show up on the Magic Jack window (as missed calls, but they'd show up).

      Off the top, I'm wondering if you may not have your firewall settings on "allow" for the Magic Jack software. If you don't know how to check your firewall settings you should go to the control panel (at least on Windows - Vista in my case) and go to security. From there you should "allow a program through Windows" (if you're using Windows anyway). If Magic Jack's customer-service people have already addressed the whole firewall issue, then what I've just said won't, of course, be of any help whatsoever.

      Sometimes you have to disable the firewall before installing the software, and enable it after the installation is done. From there you can select your settings again.

      If it were me (and if you've already checked to make sure any firewalls you have are allowing MagicJack) (and I have no idea if this will work, or if you've already done it), I'd unplug the MagicJack, uninstall the software, and shut down the computer. Then I'd re-start it, re-plug in the jack, and let it re-install the software. From there, I'd double check the firewall(s). If you don't know about firewall settings you could look into your Windows "help" section or else do a search online for something like, "help with firewall settings".

      Something else is that firewalls can be involved with your Internet service/connection itself (particularly if someone else has the service and may have arranged for one type of firewall or another). You may want to try contacting your Internet service provider to double-check about anything set up when the service was first put in (or ask whoever in the house is "administrator"). I don't happen to know if this particular kind of firewall is only for wireless connections; so forgive my ignorance. (Someone else in my house has the Internet service I use.)

      If you're using Windows go to Windows "help" and search for "service provider firewalls". There's a bunch of stuff there about firewalls, including "test for multiple firewalls".

      The fact that you say you can't receive calls leads me to suspect there's some firewall issue; but, as I said, I'm not qualified to be able to give much of an answer here.

      Maybe someone else will see this and add some better information. Other than that, I guess I'd just keep contacting their chat people until you get some answer. One reason they require customers to use the chat window is that customers are online, and MagicJack claims that's the best way for them to identify problems.

      I wish I could be more help.

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      Dorothy 7 years ago

      Can someone help me. I have tried hours on end with support people with no luck. I cannot receive calls on my MJ HELP PLEASE!!!!