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How much does a 3jam virtual phone number cost?

Service for a 3jam virtual phone number costs:

-$8.99 for one month
-$5.99 per month for 3 months
-$4.99 per month for 12 months

The basic service includes:
-Call routing and simultaneous ring on up to 6 phone numbers anywhere in the world at the lowest available rates. 30 minutes of incoming calls per month to a US number is included.
-Receiving 50 minutes of free calls on Skype/IM per month (additional calls are 1 cent/minute)
-Visual voicemail and 30 free transcriptions per month (additional transcriptions are $0.10 per message)
-Receiving unlimited SMS messages free via email
-40 included text messages per month to US phones
-Lowest prices for international text messages
-Free developer API

US Text message plans are available:
-400 messages: $5
-1000 messages: $10
-2500 messages: $20

Text messages purchased are valid for 90 days from the most recent purchase.

Call forwarding, international text messaging, and other a la carte services require a 3jam pre-paid account balance.
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  • I'm still not exactly sure what the plans include. For example if I sign up for the 12 month 4.99 plan what is that getting me, unlimited call routing, or just a package of minutes? If just a package then how much is basic U.S. to U.S. routing. Lets say I am going to use the service a lot, is there no unlimited plan for the virtual number service?
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  • Mike,

    Thanks for your message. Unfortunately, 3jam does not currently offer an unlimited plan for the virtual number service. Calls to US numbers are 3 cents per minute and calls to other destinations are at the lowest rates we can make available: http://www.3jam.com/prices_voice.php. However, we are constantly reviewing our pricing and offers and may introduce new packages in the future.
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  • I don't fully understand, the 5/month or 60/year is only for the routing? The call minutes are additional to this fee? Why would I pay for something that Google voice offers for free? Or in any case, a pstn number already on Skype for 30/year? Please help me out here
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  • Cacho,

    Thanks for your message. Skype's PSTN numbers are also $60/year and do not have the features that 3jam offers. 3jam differs from Google Voice in a number of ways:

    1) 3jam allows you to port an existing phone number to the service. Google Voice does not yet allow you to do this.

    2) 3jam allows you to take calls on Skype, Yahoo IM, AOL IM, Gtalk and a number of other online IM services. Google Voice does not offer this. PSTN numbers from Skype do not support simultaneous ringing of many locations and can only ring one phone if you do not answer your Skype.

    3) 3jam allows you to get as many phone numbers as you want, whereas Google Voice only allows you one if you have an invitation. This means you can have separate numbers for business and personal use. Other interesting uses people have been making of 3jam numbers is to buy one for family they call often overseas. Instead of having to get to Skype to get resonable calling rates, you can purchase a US phone number that automatically forwards to a calling group overseas that includes cell phones, landlines and IM clients. You can then program the number in your phone and share it with family so they can program it in their cell phones. This way, everyone gets the best rates and no one has to figure out how to get complicated VoIP apps installed on their PCs or mobile phones.

    4) 3jam provides a robust set of features for groups and can be purchased as a group phone number. You can assign a 3jam virtual phone number to a group so it's easy to stay in touch with everyone. For example, if you coach a soccer team, you can get an inexpensive virtual number for the soccer team to help people stay in touch. You can record a voicemail with game and pracice information so anyone can call and get the latest details. You can route calls to yourself and the assistant coaches to make sure anyone calling can get in touch with someone live, even if you're busy. You can create a group that includes the cell numbers of everyone on the team so you can reach them via group text messaging. You can then program the group phone number in your cell phone, so anytime you need to send a quick team update you just text the group phone number and everyone gets the message. Everyone on the team would know the soccer group phone number, and you can configure whether replies from the team go back to everyone (like a chat room) or only back to you. Google Voice doesn't have any features similar to this and assumes that your Google number is only for use by you, not groups that you manage or organize.

    5) 3jam allows you to receive and respond to text messages on your virtual number via email. This saves you money by reducing the number of text messages you send using your cellphone's text plan. Google Voice does not offer this.

    6) 3jam has full international support and we accept users from anywhere in the world. Our messages and messaging inbox are fully unicode compliant and support all languages, including Chinese, Japanese, Russian, Arabic and other double-byte character encodings. Google Voice is only available to US users using English.

    7) 3jam provides a developer API that allows you to integrate your virtual number into other applications and send and receive messages via external applications using your virtual phone number. Google Voice does not offer this.

    There are many other features we are working on, but we're always interested in feedback. Please let us know what new features are most important to you.

    Best regards

    3jam Support
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  • Yeah but none the less, google has a strong hold and I think you guys would have a much better time getting people to come over for the number portability reasons if you didn't have the whole hoopla of having to worry about per min. charges. You should figure out an unlimited monthly plan and figure it out quick. It's early adopters like use that will spreading the word a lot through twitter, blogs, etc. I almost considered switching but now I am second thinking it.
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  • I'm considering getting a 3jam number for my Peek. I'm a bit confused about how the SMS works though. I can receive an unlimited amount of SMS, but I can only send 40 replies?
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  • I’m confused
    @MikeKingsley and @Cacho asked the same simple question: What's the difference between a plan and minutes? Both times, 3jam support, you didn't answer the question.

    For example, I don't think I'm currently signed up for a plan. But I have some free minutes that were granted me just for having started an account. What's the point of having a plan if those free minutes (albeit tiny) are replenished every month, or are they? Can I just float by without paying anything if I use a small number of minutes? Does buying pre-paid minutes mean I don't need to have a plan, or does having a plan mean I don't need pre-paid minutes, or do I need both a plan and pre-paid minutes? Please explain this to us.

    Other inconsistencies or confusing things in your plan description:

    1. Is a number that has been ported over considered a 'virtual number"?
    2. What's the difference between call routing and call forwarding? You say the "basic service includes call routing" and then down below you say that "call forwarding requires a 3jam pre-paid account balance" What gives?
    3. If you're simply forwarding calls to Skype, why do I have to pay you and pay Skype to receive a call. Why would I be charged twice? If this is the case, it makes sense for me to hang up with the person who called me, and call them back from skype, but this seems silly since you're simply forwarding.
    4. You say the basic service includes lowest prices for international text messages, and then down below you say "international text messaging requires a pre-paid account balance.

    Could you please re-write this, make it clearer as to what people get in each plan, and possibly not do ridiculous things like charge me for Skype calls?

    I'm really happy to be free of my cell phone plan, and have my number ported over and forwarded to skype, but I'm a little disappointed with this confusing billing policy.
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  • Jeremy,

    Thanks for your message. We are working as I write this on simplifying our pricing and putting up a page on the site with an easy to read explanation of the details.

    The basic service (i.e. $5.99 per month if you buy 3 months) includes free minutes and messages that are replenished every month. Right now, the basic package includes 30 minutes of calls forwarded to US phone numbers, 50 minutes of calls forwarded to an IM account, 30 voicemail transcriptions (though unlimited voicemails) and 40 outbound text messages (you can receive unlimited text messages, which are sent to your email address). If you're not going to be a heavy user, then you don't need anything else for your account.

    If you will use more than the basic service, you will need to purchase some pre-paid credit. Receiving a call to a US phone is 3 cents per minute and receiving a call to IM is 1 cent per minute. We wish we didn't have to charge for this, but it costs 3jam money to receive calls from the phone network. The pricing details for minutes and messages is available at http://www.3jam.com/prices_voice.php. Voicemail transcriptions beyond 30 per month are 10 cents each, and you can buy text message packages that get the per message price down below 1 cent per message.

    The reason we implemented the pre-paid credit system is because we wanted to keep the basic service as inexpensive as possible and we only wanted to charge users for the service they actually use, rather than typical phone plans that count on most users buying more than they need. However, we understand that people like simpler packages and we are reviewing our plans and hope to have some alternative options available soon.

    To make sure we answer your questions, yes, ported numbers are considered virtual numbers. You can route calls to Skype with just your username (you don't need a Skype-in number) so you shouldn't be paying twice for taking a call on Skype. You pay only 1 cent per minute after your 50 minutes per month are used.

    Our apologies that the pricing is not simpler and clearer. We recognize the situation and are working on it right now. We will have some new options available very soon.

    Thanks for your patience.

    Best regards

    3jam Support
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  • Yeah there are still some questions such as what happens if you sign up for a 1 month credit at $8.99, are these auto billed on a cc for the next month after that? If not then what happens to your virtual number if you don't pay for another month?

    Also what happens when you use your included forwarding minutes for the month and then run out - and don't buy any prepaid credits. Will you still receive unlimited basic voicemails? What happens if you run out of credit while on a call??
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  • I appreciate the discussion here as I, too, was confused as to how 3jam's service works. The biggest reason for the confusion was that people are referred to the "voice rates" page which doesn't list the rate for calls having a US destination number. So, the only way to know that you are even charged for a US call is because of this support forum where the representative indicated that it is 3 cents per minute.

    3jam should make it a priority to succinctly and clearly describe its services and rates. Note that the 3jam representative replied a month ago and the 3jam Web page is still confusing.

    In light of this confusion, I want to be clear what the service will cost. If I sign up for a year's subscription, my monthly service charge would be calculated as:

    4.95 + (X_minutes_to_US_numbers - 30)*0.03 + (Y_outbound_sms - 50)*0.05

    For 1000 minutes and 500 messages, this equates to: 56.55.

    Is this correct?
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  • I'm using Vphonet for all of my virtual numbers in USA, China and Brazil.
    It organize my virtual numbers and making forwarding to my Office PBX.

    Vphonet Internet calls
    so you can make Internet call trow Vphonet.
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  • Hi Roshan,

    1000 inbound minutes is quite a lot. Also, if you use any SMS, you should purchase a bundle, which is 400 for $5, 1000 for $10, and 2500 for $20 (less than 1 cent per message) and can be used the next month if you don't finish it this month. Also, if you forward your inbound SMS messages to e-mail, you aren't charged. It's only when messages are sent to a mobile phone that there is a charge because we are charged to send that message.

    J. Masternak,

    3jam numbers are both voice and SMS-enabled.
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  • I’m confused
    Hi,

    I've typed in a lot of different phone numbers to sign up and none of them are available. Do you have any numbers that you know are available?

    The UI is very confusing and not conducive to selecting a number.

    A little help.

    Thanks,
    Joseph
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  • I’m Concerned!
    Is it possible to make calls from 3Jams virtual Number. For example google voice now lets you make calls from your browser on your phone. Is this a feature 3jam is coming out with. Will it be an app, Is it even being considered?
    Please reply ASAP. thanks
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  • The IP Phone carriers don't even mention that but rather they assume that you already have that and that the high-speed Internet service you have is solid and reliable. There is your first problem, which may disqualify you from having anything more than total frustration if you try to switch to VOIP.
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  • You can currently call your own virtual number and dial out from there to have your caller ID appear on the recipient's phone. You can also make inexpensive long distance calls this way.

    Thanks
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  • I signed up an phone number at 3jam, but when I sign in it say that phone number/pass is incorrect, even when I type the email/pass. I try many times but it is still the same
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