AT&T Tells CallVantage VOIP Service Customers to PISS OFF!

John P.

I’ve been an AT&T VoIP client for 5 years now via their CallVantage service. But they just sent us a letter in the mail telling us that they are going to discontinue the service. First of all, why didn’t they email it to us? Or drop a recorded message in our voice mail boxes? Anyway, I absolutely love their rationale…

As AT&T continually strives to deliver new and innovative products… AT&T will be discontinuing AT&T CallVantage service in 2009.


So, let me get this straight… In AT&T’s quest to deliver new and innovative products, they’ve decided to eliminate the internet based VoIP service which delivers flat rate calling, digital access to voice-mail, online capabilities to manage and change services, and instead offer “wireless from AT&T and traditional voice service”? Brilliant.

The letter they sent goes on to say:

To move your current AT&T CallVantage number to another AT&T service such as AT&T U-Verse Voice (VoIP) service… Contact AT&T…

What? Wait a minute. There is ANOTHER AT&T VoIP service? Well, fine, then why the hell don’t you just roll my CallVantage account into this U-Verse thing and NOT make me all upset and have to do work like “contacting AT&T”?

Well, maybe I’m just one of a very small number of clients they have on CallVantage, right? They really don’t care about us, because what’s maybe 200,000 users paying $30 per month each to AT&T? $6 million per month? HA! Fine, so if we all leave they could care less. Piss off!

But, if we do want to stay, our alternative is to contact AT&T to switch to U-verse. Ok, let me just find the number to call and waste my time taking care of that…. Where is that number? Where is …? WHAT?!?

They didn’t even give an F-ing number!!!


  1. says

    I would say its AT&T monopoly they just want to ripe us off. However impressive piece of information, let me elaborate more on VoIP. Voice over Internet Protocol has been around since many years. But due to lack of sufficient and affordable bandwidth it was not possible to carry carrier grade voice over Internet Protocol. But since the arrival of low cost internet bandwidth and new speech codecs such as G.729, G.723 which utilizes very low payload to carry carrier class voice it has recently been possible to leverage the true benefits of VoIP. G.723 codec utilizes only 6 Kbps (Kilo Bytes/sec) which is capable of maintaining a constant stream of data between peers and deliver carrier grade voice quality. Lets put this way if you have 8 Mbps internet connection, by using G.723 codec you can run upto 100 telephone lines with crystal clear and carrier grade voice quality. I am also a user of VoIP and have setup a small PBX at home. Since I have discovered VoIP I have never used traditional PSTN service.

    Dear readers, if you have not yet tried VoIP I suggest that you try VoIP technology and I bet you will never want to use the traditional PSTN phone service ever again. VoIP has far more superior features to offer which traditional PSTN sadly cannot offer.

    Also It has recently been possile to carry Video alongwith VoIP by using low payload video codecs. I cannot resist to tell you that by using T.38 passthrough and disabling VAD VoIP can carry FAX transmission, but beaware FAX T.38 passthrough will only work when using wide band protocols such as G.711, a-Law and u-Law.

    By using ATA (Analog Telephone Adapter) which converts VoIP signals into traditional PSTN you can also using Dial-up modems to connect to various dialup services. I wont go in to the details what VoIP can offer, to cut my story short VoIP is a must to have product for every business and individual.

    How VoIP Works

    When we make a VoIP call, a communication channel is established between caller and called party over IP (Internet Protocol) which runs on top of computer data networks. A telephony conversation that takes place over VoIP are converted into binary data packets streams in real time and transmitted over data network, when these data packets arrive at the destination these are again converted into standard telephony conversation. This whole process of voice conversion into data, transmission and data conversion into back voice conversation takes place within less than few milliseconds. That is how a VoIP is call is transmitted over data networks. I hope that now you understand basics of how a VoIP call takes place.

    What are speech codec’s and what role codec plays in VoIP?

    Speech codec play a vital role in VoIP and codec determines the quality and cost of the call. Let me explain you what exactly VoIP codec’s are and how they work. You may have heard about data compression, or probably you have heard about air compressor which compresses a volume of air in enclosed container, VoIP codec’s are no different than a air compressor. Speech codec’s compresses voice into data packets and decompresses it upon arrival at destination. Some VoIP codec’s can compress huge amount of voice while maintaining QoS which means use this type of codec will cost less because it will consume just a fraction of data network. Some codec’s are just not capable of encoding huge amount of voice they simply consume huge amount of data networks bandwidth hence the cost goes up.

    Following is a list of VoIP codec’s along with how much data network bandwidth they consume.

    * AMR Codec
    * BroadVoice Codec 16Kbps narrowband, and 32Kbps wideband
    * GIPS Family – 13.3 Kbps and up
    * GSM – 13 Kbps (full rate), 20ms frame size
    * iLBC – 15Kbps,20ms frame size: 13.3 Kbps, 30ms frame size
    * ITU G.711 – 64 Kbps, sample-based Also known as alaw/ulaw
    * ITU G.722 – 48/56/64 Kbps ADPCM 7Khz audio bandwidth
    * ITU G.722.1 – 24/32 Kbps 7Khz audio bandwidth (based on Polycom’s SIREN codec)
    * ITU G.722.1C – 32 Kbps, a Polycom extension, 14Khz audio bandwidth
    * ITU G.722.2 – 6.6Kbps to 23.85Kbps. Also known as AMR-WB. CELP 7Khz audio bandwidth
    * ITU G.723.1 – 5.3/6.3 Kbps, 30ms frame size
    * ITU G.726 – 16/24/32/40 Kbps
    * ITU G.728 – 16 Kbps
    * ITU G.729 – 8 Kbps, 10ms frame size
    * Speex – 2.15 to 44.2 Kbps
    * LPC10 – 2.5 Kbps
    * DoD CELP – 4.8 Kbps

    Switch to VoIP Today and you will never want to use traditional PSTN ever again.



  2. says

    Geez, this reeks of really poor customer service! Down here in South Africa we were at the mercy of a telecoms monopoly for many years, and even now our fixed line offerings are dominated by the very same player, so I can relate.

    Telkom is the same of said service provider, and websites like (subsequently killed off) and (still going strong) did a lot to expose their BS and educate customers as to what alternatives there are. No consumers should be given the cold shoulder, and when that does happen it is time to take your business elsewhere.

  3. Elaine says

    Yeah, I was pissed too by the letter from AT&T. I called them with the same question you had, if they have a new service why not convert over? Well, because they don’t have U-Verse in Arizona! I called the ever dreaded QWest, got basically the same package. Just not a fan of QWest, but right now AT&T will never get my business again!

  4. Greg Lewis says

    Ah, telecom customer service…its like getting a love filled hug everytime they contact you.

    I love my Time Warner VOIP (I switched after I cancelled that crap service that you recommended) because it runs through the jacks in my house. Now I can have multiple wireless handset hubs instead of buying one that allows 10 handsets. Also, my wife feels safe because she can plug in her phone from 1993…I haven’t told her that it won’t work if the power goes out.

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