Wireless & Talk
First you log into your account and sign up, currently the basic service is free for four months. After that you pay a slight increase on your normal broadband charges. All your off peak and weekend calls - to 01 and 02 numbers - are free and calls to other Wireless and Talk users are free at anytime. This could be so useful if you have kids and their friends are also on Wireless and Talk.
Then you receive an email saying your order is being processed and a couple of days later Parcel Force will deliver the modem. Follow the instructions from the supplied CD and within a few minutes you should be able to surf and pick up emails.
The delay occurs in the phone part being activated, mine took five days and the lady I spoke with says it could be a week, rather different to the 24 hours mentioned during the installation.
The day comes and the all important email arrives with the phone number and a pin code. Next you need to turn the unit off for 15 minutes and then turn it on again and once all the lights settle down the phone symbol should be alight and you can make and receive calls VOIP.
The unit itself looks like a slightly opened book with the spine uppermost. It is 26x22x6cm the last figure is the maximum at the base with only 3cm at the top. Where everything goes is well documented in the small 28 page setup guide.
You can setup either for wired or wireless operation, the latter using WEP encryption. The operation of the unit for surfing or sending or receiving emails is exactly the same as any external modem, providing the Wireless and Talk is on when you boot the PC then all Internet activity should proceed without problem.
The main addition is the VOIP section, just connect any phone to the base of the unit and you should be able to make or receive calls. When you lift the receiver if you are quick you hear five beeps and then you get a normal dial tone.
The all important thing with any VOIP product is the clarity for both parties. I have made calls with other packages and it sounds fine to me, however the other party has been less than happy, the converse is also true on occasions. However with all my test calls - some made with the other party being in ignorance - the quality seems crisp and clear. Some calls the other person aware of the purpose and these tended to be extra critical but even then there were no complaints.
Full details of the costs can be found on the www.wanadoo.co.uk site. Should you make a lot of calls during the day then you might be interested in the Broadband Max package £10 per month more that from the 1/6/06 all calls to 01 and 02 numbers at any time are Free.
However do remember that you still pay for 084 and 087 numbers on either service, the costs for all other calls including mobile and foreign calls are shown on the site.
At the start of June Wanadoo rebranded themselves as Orange but I checked the URL given above still works.
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