in Telephony

back online with dry DSL

Meredith & I moved into a house at the beginning of April and for our Internet connectivity, I retained my EGate DSL service — only on a dry local loop, i.e. without dial tone. This is commonly known as Naked DSL, and this means I no longer have to pay Bell Canada a minimum of $25.00 per month for telephone service that I don’t really need. Now mind you, EGate still has to pay BellNexxia a $12 fee monthly for providing the dry loop, so that gets added onto my DSL bill. At the end of the day, though, my total bill for Internet connectivity and voice will be about $55 ($34.95 DSL plus $5 static IP plus $12 BellNexxia fee, and a $2.50 Toronto DID for VoIP from Unlimitel). I’m also paying 1.1 cents/min. for all voice calls, whether "local" or "long distance" (with VoIP this is virtually the same). Compare this with my bill before: $39.95 DSL including static IP plus $32.05 Bell bill per month.

So far, Meredith has been reasonably happy with the telephone service; she wishes she could plug an analog cordless telephone into the Asterisk PBX system, but the hacked PAP2 ATA I bought has echo cancellation problems that I’ve yet to work out. For now, we have three IP phone sets: a Linksys SPA-941 that sits on my desk, and two other Linksys SPA-921s, one of which sits on Meredith’s desk and another which is going downstairs, once I buy 50 feet of white Ethernet cable.

Me, I’m just happy to be free from the chains of Ma Bell!

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  1. Just curious if you wince a little bit when you realize that there is a charge for local calls? Essentially it is the same local/ld it's just data moving across the line.

    I'm wondering if the notion of having to pay for local calls reduces one's usage of the phone.

    I often wonder how much we actually use our phone for local vs long distance calls.

    Any idea if there is any way to capture usage for regular old pots phones?

  2. Hey Travis – long time no speak! I do wince a little bit, but only a tiny bit – at 1.1 cents a minute, it's still a bargain. For the $25 one could pay Bell per month for a landline, that would get you over 2000 minutes, or over 37 hours of talk time. Even if I'm on the phone for two hours, that's still only costing me $1.32.

    Having to pay for all calls (local ones included) is a common phenomenon around the world, particularly in Europe. This probably explains why there is far wider adoption of cellular telephones there.