Vonage has been my landline phone for almost 15 years now. At some point the price of landline is too much to swallow for not much of usage. Sometimes I wanted to cancel it but we all are used to having a landline and not having a landline feels like missing out.
Vonage keeps raising prices. If you call them, they will give you some offer and then it will slowly keep raising with out your knowledge.
After some thought I decided to cancel it but want to keep the number. After exploring options I decided on to move it to Google Voice. For making international voice calls I now use Google Hangouts. Its a lot cheaper.
Google voice does not port in landline phone numbers. They port in number from cell phone carriers only.
After googling few folks have suggested AT&T Go phone or Tmobile prepaid. Few folks have mentioned about the sales pressure at AT&T stores etc. T-Mobile prepaid sim cards are easy to find, so I decided to use T-Mobile.
You will also need a cheap mobile phone. I choose an old Android phone Samsum Galaxy S5 AT&T. Note down the IMEI number of this phone.
Step 1. Login to your Vonage account and note down your account number on paper. Because you wont have access to your online account later.
Step 2. If you haven’t setup a pin for your Vonage account, setup now and note it down on the same paper.
Step 3. Jump onto the T-Mobile pre-paid Activation site and scroll all the way and click on “Ready to activate your phone?”
Step 4. Input all your details like a) SIM card serial number, b) your phone imei number, c) SIM card’s activation code.
Step 5. Follow all the steps and at some point it will ask if you are port in number and if so it will ask for the phone number and the carrier details like Vonage account number and pin.
Step 6. It will also ask for the what type of pre-paid plan to choose. Select basic $3/month plan.
Step 7. Follow the on-screen steps to the completion including credit card info for refill amount. The minimum amount to fund the account is $10.00. Sometimes, the credit card will fail because the number is not ported and so the account is not yet opened. (For this we need to wait for number port to complete and accounted opened for funding it).
Step 8. After all the steps, submit. You will receive a confirmation email from T-Mobile.
Step 9. Now insert the SIM card on your Android phone and power it on. You will get a Welcome Text message.
Step 10. Wait for couple of hours and call for T-Mobile to verify that they have all the information for porting. The number is 1-877-789-3106. For more help refer to help link.
Step 11. After T-Mobile has confirmed it, now we wait for the port to complete. T-Mobile says it may take from 7 to 10 days.
I also heard in the forums that Vonage does not let go of phone numbers easily and they will delay the port.
My Vonage account is on a month to month. So start this process 2 weeks before your credit card gets charged for the next bill. In my case I started this process when where are 4 days before my card about to be charged.
Step 12. For me on the third day, I got the text from T-Mobile that number port is complete and account is active.
Step 13. Now go to tmobile.com and register and create an online account using your phone number.
Step 14. Again choose the same plan ($3/month) or another plan and fund it with your credit card. For me I just went with the basic $3/month plan as I don’t plan to make or take calls on this number.
Step 15. Waited for another day, to see if vonage would let you login to your account. I got an error message saying something to the fact like account not found. Now this is good, because vonage closed it on their end.
Step 16. The next day, I received an email from vonage saying your account is closed.
With this the porting from Vonage to T-Mobile prepaid is complete.
I will write another post for porting to Google Voice.