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Save Money – Get DSL Without a Phone Line

12 Nov

+ 10

Here is a great tip that could save you over $500 a year:  You no longer need to keep a home phone just for internet access.

Costs and Savings

Historically, DSL or “Digital Subscriber Line” worked over your home phone line, which forced us to have to pay for basic phone service in order to get DSL.

Not only is this no longer true, but you would be astounded how much money you could save by eliminating the phone cost.

For example, my wife and I never use our home phone – it was a number we gave out to people that we didn’t want to talk to.  For this ability we were paying the BARE MINIMUM $9 a month.  But after scrutinizing our bill each month, we were actually paying $22 with all the surcharges and taxes added in.  FOR BARE MINIMUM SERVICE AND NO PHONE PLAN.

If you add a phone plan and long distance, you can easily be paying $40 or $50 a month.  And most of you don’t realize that you are paying probably another $10 a month for Caller ID, *69 and other product.  My mother-in-law pays over $60 a month!

Here are the current published rates for AT&T DSL with Phone:

AT&T Normal Rates

and then for just DSL:

AT&T Naked DSL Rates

So although you will pay about $10 extra for the naked DSL, you should be saving $20 – $40 in phone charges.

My Experience

I found out about this last year when I saw a story about Naked DSL from Arstechnica, and then went about figuring out how to make it work.  I called my carrier, AT&T, and asked for “Naked DSL”.

The representative was surprised I knew of the term and proceeded to ask me how I knew of it and even told me of the savings.

At one point in the call, he tried to “do his job” by telling me that I could get basic phone service for “just” $9 a month.  I replied, “After all the fees it was more like $20”, and he laughed and agreed. (Pretty funny he said that.)

All in all it took a solid thirty minutes where I learned the following:

  1. Instead of a phone number, I would have a “Dry Loop Number”.  So when I call in and they ask for my phone number, this is what I give them.  DON’T EVER LOSE THIS NUMBER – TRUST ME.
  2. To switch over to my new “number”, I needed to schedule a day for it to happen where I can be without internet service for a bit.

I scheduled the switch-over to happen while I was out of town for Independence day, so when I would get back it would just be magically working.

But then we started getting bills from AT&T with my old phone number for 0 dollars two months in a row.

Then our internet just stopped working.

When I called AT&T, they asked for my phone number, and not knowing that I had to remember my Dry Loop Number, they couldn’t help me.  They told me to look at my bill, but it only showed my old number.

After about two hours of holding, screaming, and talking to supervisors, someone finally found my number.

Apparently my account was not transferred correctly over, so for the last month I was still using my old internet account, which just got shut off.

They fixed the problem, and then after I rebooted my modem, internet was back on.

Caveats

I have found that the main way the carriers will scare you into keeping your phone is by telling you that you won’t have 911 access.  So be aware that if you really want this ability, you need to keep your phone.  We have several cell phones, so as long as one is always near us, it isn’t that important.

Secondly, if you have a home security system that relies on having a home phone, you will either have to upgrade it to to use a wireless module (which is safer anyway), use a service that can communicate over the internet, or turn it off.

In Conclusion

With people looking for many ways to save money, this could be a simple action, with minimal impact to do so.

While it is not for everyone, it is a no-brainer for those willing to try it.