The below provides a quick overview of the user submitted reviews for BasicTalk.
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BasicTalk phone service is a new brand that was launched by Vonage Holdings Corp. in May of 2013. The service appears to be positioned as a lower cost alternative to the regular Vonage service that costs in the region of $25 per month and includes unlimited international calling. The new BasicTalk service comes with unlimited calling to phone numbers located in the USA, and has a reduced feature set (caller-id, call waiting, voicemail, 411 and 911) that compares more favorably with regular land-lines, than a typical home VoIP service. BasicTalk is geared primarily to those who desire a simple, straightforward residential service or cheaper alternative to a landline.
If looking for a simple, straightforward service, BasicTalk is just that. Basic. Features include Voicemail, Caller ID, Call Waiting, and 911. Call quality is generally on par with what is expected from landlines.
It should be noted that BasicTalk is mainly for residential users who simply want to replace their landline or setup a new phone line. New accounts have the option of getting a new number or sticking with one already owned.
Installation tutorials and troubleshooting guides in the "Technical Support" section are available on the Basic Talk website. This is great, as Live chat through the website is available only between 9am and 9pm EST on weekdays. Users may also email customer service.
If unhappy with the service, a refund may be issued within 7 days of activation. There is also no Early Termination or Cancellation fee. If you decide to cancel your plan between the current and the next billing cycle, only charges for that month are accrued and billed. This is a nice policy for customers as other VoIP providers have been criticized for excessive hidden fees related to service cancellation.
Owned and backed by Vonage Holdings Corp.
Much lower cost than the regular Vonage phone service offerings.
Uses the popular Grandstream HT701F telephone adaptor.
Like most other VoIP providers, there are regular use limit of 3000 minutes a month and charges 3.9 cents a minute after that. International calling outside of the U.S., Canada or Puerto Rico is not available with this service.
An activation fee of up to $29.99 should be expected. Other fees to note include reactivation fees of closed accounts, standard taxes, and shipping and handling costs.
Only the most standard features are offered with the service and no premium features. The lack of call forwarding can also be quite inconvenient for those frequently away from home. Phone number transfers can also take a few days up to a few weeks to become active. Though it's rare for it to take more than a few days to transfer, it's certainly possible and worth considering. Typical VoIP services include over 40 features so when BasicTalk is compared with this, it pales in comparison.
There is no mobile service available through a plan option or mobile application.
There is no for support fax machines. A fax machine may be plugged into the BasicTalk Box, and some fax machines may work, but troubleshooting for individual devices is not supported.
Technical support is only available through the website. A telephone number is available only for sales inquiries. Technical support is lacking compared to other services.
Although the cost of Basic Talk is competitive, it is still higher than its competition, such as the providers listed in our residential phone service review section.
The Bottom Line
BasicTalk is a cheaper alternative to the plethora of other VoIP services available. This affordability is its main appeal to consumers. However, this cheaper cost comes at the expense of premium options and features, and higher levels of customer support. If international calling isn't a necessity for you and your family, and you are simply looking for a cheaper equivalent to landline service, BasicTalk may be all that you need.
BasicTalk is a new service introduced in 2013. Currently 50% of customers recommend the service on WhichVoIP user reviews. Primary complaints include mentions of choppy audio and dropped calls. Those with the least trouble with the service seem to be placing calls only within the USA. Read our collection of user reviews for yourself to see what existing customers have had to say after subscribing and be sure to stay tuned for more updates from WhichVoIP as the BasicTalk service continues to expand.
We would like to hear from people that have already signed up for this service, so please contribute to our collection of user reviews and help others decide if the service is a good choice for their home phone. Select the green button the right to get started.
Author: Tony Campbell
BasicTalk reviews are listed in chronological order.
#31 : DEC 10th, 2014 : Aaron
Really good value for $9.99 a month. Enough features to make it interesting and very easy to set up.
#30 : NOV 30th, 2014 : Cindy
Customer Service does not exist. If you call the phone number listed, you go through the basic, press 1, press 2 press 3 etc. It does not matter which number you press, each one says the same thing. Please go to the website for further assistance...goodbye. If your question cannot be answered by their FAQ, then you are out of luck. They have NO CUSTOMER SUPPORT. I am returning mine tomorrow. I tried it for 24 hours, and no customer support. Not worth it.
#29 : NOV 18th, 2014 : Sarah
Great service. I bought this at Walmart. I was tired of paying AT&T 45-75 bucks a month, for what? I got cordless phones (2) with one base. I connected the base to my internet modem and have the others around the house. The monthly bill with tax is $12.99. You get caller ID, voicemail(which you can also check and listen to online) and you can switch you phone number. I do not like customer service as it is mainly through email, IM, or you can call them during a certain time. I have only had to contact CS the 1 time. I have had the service for over a year now.
#28 : NOV 7th, 2014 : Margaret
No local phone number, cannot access your account easily but the worst is I called my daughter not even 3 miles away and she couldn't hear me although I could hear her. I would not under any circumstances recommend this phone service. Get a cheap land line. I sent them an email and asked for a bill with the mailing address on it and to date have not gotten one. Just emails.
#27 : OCT 9th, 2014 : Larry
Just got the service recently. You can't talk to a person on the phone. Their web site is the worst I have ever used. The phone number sends you to the lousy web site with nothing but generic questions. You can't ask the question you need the answer too. You can't even talk to anyone to cancel.
#26 : SEP 30th, 2014 : Dave
I would not highly recommend BasicTalk only because you cannot talk to anyone live by phone if you have issues. You can only go on line and there are only a few problem menu choices available. I have had this service for one year and overall had very few problems, but when I do, such as now, it's very hard to get a fix from their menu choices which don't fit my problem which is the phone always states that I have 1 missed call and I can't clear it out.
#25 : SEP 29th, 2014 : Lee
The black box (adaptor) keeps dying and Customer Service keeps telling me to unplug it and re-plug it in. Doesn't work though and BasicTalk tries to blame everyone except their crappy equipment. This would be the 3rd box if I were to continue service but I will be cancelling soon.
#24 : SEP 15th, 2014 : Valerie
I attempted to transfer our phone number to BasicTalk for over a month. You cannot speak to a human being on the phone after your initial set up. They will only communicate via email and CHAT. They kept cancelling our transfer request stating that the name and/or address did not match our previous provider. It matched exactly and the previous provider was contacted to verify. We would receive an email from the Support team stating that they were going to fix everything and make sure it all went through. Meanwhile, the next day, we would receive an email from them saying that there was another problem. The left hand did not seem to know what the right hand was doing. We finally cancelled today - I hope - although I don't have confidence that will go well either. I would NEVER recommend this company to anyone.
#23 : AUG 29th, 2014 : Victoria
Passed on number of previous customer who had been involved in an adult business. Customers continued to call this number thinking it was still the old business, a violation to my right of privacy, an affront to human dignity, a matter of public concern. Bill collectors also harassed me using the same number. After my complaint, they provided new number and represented "never used before." More unwanted calls. They lied. Cancelled service. Filing complaint with BBB.
BludBaut (November 13th 2014) : BBB is useless.
#22 : AUG 5th, 2014 : Steve
I bought BasicTalk when Verizon became insane. FiOS was not available and never will be. Verizon speed dropped below 1 Mbps so even $19.95 was outrageous. When I asked to drop the DSL, I was told it would cost me more without the DSL. I found BasicTalk, killed my Verizon phone service and raised my internet service to $24.99. I ported my phone number (took 3 days) and have been pleased with the service. I have had to use live chat a few times and always had my problem solved. For the cost, BasicTalk provides everything I need for $9.99 + tax/month. You won't go wrong with it.
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#6 : Posted by Tony Alvarado on November 17th, 2014:
The phone is breaking up and noise on the other end of the line.
-> Response: Sorry to hear you are having issues with your BasicTalk service Tony. If this is your first experience with VoIP you may want to check out our VoIP test tool (go to the tab labeled Graphs/Tools above) and our troubleshooting guide (linked from the Residential tab in the main navigation at top of page). Hope this helps.
#5 : Posted by Isabel on September 17th, 2014:
I got the adapter from basic talk today and I'm trying to activate the box but when I enter the MAC number it keeps telling me it is invalid.
-> Response: My assumption is you bought it from a retail store. Make sure you only enter numbers and letters in the activation area on the BasicTalk website (12 characters). e.g. 000F12AB3CDE
If this still fails you will need to contact Basic Talk directly.
#4 : Posted by Bernadette Stengel on June 2nd, 2014:
Nothing I did could get my Basic Talk unit to activate. In addition, I was pestered by unwanted promotions so that I had to go back into my downloads to delete them. I am disappointed. I will need to try something else to save money. Any time a product does not interface well with one's home technology, they blame the user or the equipment. After at least 30 years of fooling around and earning my money with computers, I really don't think it's my fault. Too bad.
-> Response: Sorry to hear about your troubles. Regardless of where you look next, here are some things to look at when you have time just to make sure your Internet connection is good enough for VoIP and to examine some common troubleshooting tips.
- VoIP Test (to analyze Internet connection to your home - requires Java but really recommend running this to get a MOS score at the end)
- Troubleshooting tips
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