BTC has been down all day today and people are understandably upset. Click here to read BTC’s press statement. I along with many others were on Face book commenting on this catastrophic failure.
Many users were very displeased with BTC and let them know in no uncertain terms. The marketing phrase “BTC Dun Dun it again!” has taken on new meaning.
Its been over a decade now since we’ve had regular cellular service for all. Phone service has become almost a necessity, so when BTC went down yesterday i started wondering, what if we were without phone services for a long while?
Skype: perhaps the most well known voip software, skype has been around since 2003. It even came pre-installed on this laptop (my user name: game.r2) that i bought last year. Skype allows you to place free pc to pc voice, video, and conference calls. PC to land lines are also available at a reasonable price. See chart of features here.
Most interesting is the skype on mobile phone capability. This would allow you to go to any wifi hotspot and call any other phone or PC that has skype installed anywhere in the world for free! But this is not available for all mobile phones… Is your phone on the list here?
see also Google Voice, Msn and Yahoo chat which all allow pc to pc voice and video calls.
IndigoOnePhone: Indigo has alot of features and is a viable alternative to BTC. Indigo offers plans from $10 to $35 per month. You should be familiar with the service by now but incase you’re not here’s the list of plans and features here. There is also a plan for mobile phones.
Update: there are mixed reports on the availability of Indigo during the outage… some users report it was up early but then went down later… leave a comment if you had experience with Indigo yesterday.
MagicJack: This is a device that plugs into the pc’s usb port and connects to your phone. You can take it anywhere and plug it into any PC with a high speed internet connection.
You get free calls to other MagicJack numbers anywhere in the world and free calls to the US and Canada. For a yearly subscription you can make international calls.
see also: Vonage. here’s a comparison between Regular phones, MagicJack and Vonage. Its for the US but still useful.
Ok thats it. Next time BTC acts up, and there will be a next time, be prepared.