What does it mean for a (VOIP) phone company to "make a route change"?

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Today I was having trouble connecting with Ooma to certain phone  
numbers in a particular area code and the Customer Support wrote
back that they fixed it by "making a route change".

What does it mean to "make a route change" anyway?

The symptoms were that I could call certain numbers in a  
specific area code from either my landline or cell and they'd
connect; but when making those same calls from the Ooma VOIP,  
they would ring but never connect.

What is a "route change"?

PS: Is there an Internet phone newsgroup?


Re: What does it mean for a (VOIP) phone company to "make a route change"?
On Wed, 26 Jun 2013 04:12:15 +0000, Angel A. wrote:

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Don't know either, but the folks that hang out here are really sharp on  
voip:

<http://www.dslreports.com/forum/voip


Re: What does it mean for a (VOIP) phone company to "make a route change"?
On Wed, 26 Jun 2013 06:56:12 +0000, default wrote:

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Thanks.  

I posted in that forum and will await a reply.


Re: What does it mean for a (VOIP) phone company to "make a route change"?
On Wed, 26 Jun 2013 12:59:47 +0000, Angel A. wrote:

Quoted text here. Click to load it

In that forum, these are the responses so far:

What does it mean when Ooma support changes a route for me?
I talked a friend in Pennsylvania into buying the Ooma Telo at Costco for $100
and she's had it for a week and said it wouldn't call a certain telephone number
in the 570 area code which she calls all the time.

I tested that number with my landline, and with my Ooma, and with my cell (all
in California):
Guess what?

She was right.
So I called Ooma, and after about an hour of uselessness (e.g., press *98 for a
different codec), got to third tier support, who asked me for some sample calls
that they could time stamp accurately.

Then, a day later, I received this email from Ooma (and the calls now work):

    quote:On 06/25/2013 06:39 PM, Ooma Care Support wrote:
    Recently you requested personal assistance from our on-line support center.
    Below is a summary of your request and our response.
    Subject Call completion: Outbound to some numbers in PA
    Response (Rechelle) 06/25/2013 06:39 PM
    We have made a route change that should correct this.
    Could you please retest and let us know if you still have any issues calling
15708978200 & 15708979077.
    We`re looking forward to your response.
    Please write me back if you have further questions and I will respond to you
as quickly as possible.
    Thank you for choosing Ooma!

My questions:
Q1: What does it mean to "make a route change"?

The company we were calling says lots of people can't get through to them, and
they're not all on Ooma.
Q2: What would be the "real" underlying problem?

Answer 1:
1) VoIP service providers commonly use a few carriers, or companies that have
equipment to connect to the PSTN and route calls. The carrier they were using
for your calls was not working properly so they are going to use a different one
instead.

2) It sounds like users on specific carriers can't call this number. There are
many reasons why this could be. In the past I've seen it happen when a number
was recently ported, and the port was only partially successful. Calls from some
carriers were routed to the old carrier (which failed) and calls from other
carriers were routed to the new carrier (which worked).

Answer 2:
 Another reason may be if the number is in a high-cost rate center and/or CLEC-
some carriers may refuse to connect calls there. Classic example would be the
so-called "free" conference call services.

Answer 3:
Think of the routing like the roads you drive to get somewhere: there are many
roads you can take, but if the one you pick turns out to be closed, you take
another.

Answer 4:
If you had told us 570-xxx rather than just 570 more info might have been
available.

There are many rural phone companies in that area, such as The North-Eastern
Pennsylvania Telephone Company.

Another is Commonwealth Telephone which now is owned by Frontier (itself no
great shakes).

Rural phone companies may be harder to connect to (unlike some other rural
hookups) and may have higher interconnection fees.

Answer 5:
The full phone numbers are in the quote from Ooma Care Support.
According to freerevcell.com, they're both with Commonwealth Telephone.

Answer 6:
Confirmed.
Well, I'm not surprised. Problems getting through to Commonwealth (Frontier)
have been documented by several people including myself....




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