From: Craig Phillips [] on behalf of Craig Phillips []

Sent: Tuesday, April 03, 2012 9:42 PM


Subject: Cocktail Talk - AT&T's Zero G Network


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Cocktail Talk


May 2012

Cocktail Talk


Welcome to CN Consulting's "Cocktail Talk".


Cocktail Talk is a casual monthly newsletter intended to arm you with amusing bits and bytes of information on whats happening in the computer world. Topics sure to break the ice and capture an audience at many a social or business event.


Cocktail Talk is archived on


Currently, on Cocktail Talk - Living in Zero G.


Cocktail TalkAT&T boasts the biggest 3G/4G Network in the world. 3G, 4G, what difference does it make when you can't get a signal? You get Zero G. 


I get Zero G in my house \ home office,  and called AT&T to complain. AT&T Support explained it to me. It is not their fault. It's the wind.


AT&T says; "Is it windy out?  Because if it is, you see, the birds, they have to hold on to the telephone wires real tight, when it's windy, and that degrades the signal." 


AT&T then suggested their $200 MicroCell which would allow cell phones in WiFi range to make calls using my Time Warner Cable connection, and $30 a month.


When I typed; "So you're telling me to pay you another $560 this year because what I'm paying for doesn't work?"  They typed; "Yes.".


Turns out Vonage has a free iPhone App to do the same thing, without buying a $200 device, for about $0.02 per minute.  That's 25 hours a month at the AT&T rate. 


Why not get the Vonage App? Anywhere you get WiFi, your house, the library, coffee shop, office, you can use the Vonage App to make calls. No MicroCell required.


I have "No Service" displayed on my AT&T phone but get crystal clear VOIP connections using Vonage.  VOIP (Voice Over Internet Protocol) is very trendy and also fun to say. 


The Vonage App even gives you quotes. Type in a number, and it tells you what it'll cost per minute. You can use PayPal, Visa, whatever to buy credit in increments of $4.99 and $9.99. Your balance is displayed on every outbound call. 


Vonage doesn't just grab all your outbound calls so it can bill you either, you have to intentionally use Vonage. 


Which brings us back to the same problem of paying more to get something you're already paying AT&T for. But you don't have to pay for it, let AT&T. 


Why not take those 25 hours a month, 1,500 minutes, off your AT&T package? That's about $50 a month ($600 a year) on the Family Plan. Everything less than 25 hours a month with Vonage saves money. 


As a matter of fact, AT&T probably hasn't told you that if you're paying $30 a month for Unlimited Text Messaging you can check a new box and get unlimited cell to cell calls under the same $30. That leaves only land lines going against your precious minutes. Check that box and then check the usage on your next bill. Right now they're charging you for those, which is probably why they probably haven't told you.


Actual mileage will vary but it seems like saving $560 by not getting the AT&T solution plus $600 by reducing AT&T's package equals a trip to Mexico, and if you use your Vonage App to call home from paradise you won't have to pay  AT&T's international rates doing it.



Kick a giant in the shins, go to Mexico, shut up and keep paying, that's your call, and that's Cocktail Talk. 



Thank you for reading,



Craig Phillips

CN Consulting, Inc.


CN Consulting, Inc -
Computer Consulting for Business!



CN Consulting Inc. (CNCI) is an independent consulting company formed in 1990 and located within easy reach of both Chicago and Milwaukee.


CNCI maintains a select client base providing consulting services concerning the use of information technology. We persistently look for advantage to our clients in added value and reduced cost made available by advancing technology.


CNCI does not have financial interest in any given product or product line. We evaluate current and emerging technologies solely based on their benefit to our clients. CNCI implements the solutions it recommends and readily partners with companies that offer products and services to the advantage of our clients. CNCI offers complete client support with singular accountability.


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