Thursday, August 21, 2008

Ring Central Part 1

Two weeks ago, I saw a Ring Central advertisement and decided to evaluate its VOIP service. I signed up for a one week trial under my company name NEXTWERK. I got myself a Phoenix number because key members of my team telecommute from Phoenix. My company however, is based in Tolland CT and San Diego.

Earlier this week, I forced to extend the evaluation for a month. I say forced because when I signed up, I had to provide my CC# for a one week free trial. On signup, I tried their user interface for 15 minutes and decided it was not for us. I tried to figure out how to cancel the trial but couldn't successfully do it. I think they required me to call them during regular business hours. Anyway at this point I forgot all about it until I got an email from them that I was now a bonafide paying customer.

Now that I am paid up for this month, I am having Tomara on my team evaluate the system to see if it can replace our live answering service. And the first thing I will evaluate is their business ethic:

I got a weird voicemail on the new Ring Central telephone which is unknown to the world. Here is a transcipt:

Hey Mark how are you. My name is Joe xyz. I found you on I am a rep that deals with computer repair companies for for AT&T. Give me a call back we've got a program that puts you in front of 2500 people a month in Phoenix looking for computer repair; both business and residential. I only deal with computer repair companies. My number is XXX-XXXX. Thanks a lot and I look forward to hearing from you.

My first reaction:
+ How the did my company name (with this #) show up on superpages so fast.
+ How did this guy from AT&T get this number.
+ Why were we categorized as computer repair?

I went to and searched for my company name. It shows up as Computer Software but with the correct San Diego address and the correct 858 number. Then I made a reverse lookup on the new Phoenix (test) number to see if my company shows up. It didn't. Instead the number points to Geek Squad.

Conclusion: This must have been an "inside" job. Ring Central internally sold my contact / company information to someone else so that they could unleash their telemarketing.

Next week I will post a detailed note on their service, which so far has not impressed me at all.

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