Free Service

Don't fall for a Free Conference Call Service

Most people have learned through experience that, if its too good to be true it probably is, so why do people still think they can get good service that is free? A free service is never really free. Most people just don't understand how a free service works.

How does a Free Conference Call Service Work?

A free service makes its money by getting paid by a local telephone company for terminating traffic on their system. That is because a local telephone company gets paid by long distance phone companies to terminate telephone calls on their system. And a free service provider is bringing long distance traffic to the local telephone company's system so the local telephone company pays the provider a portion of the money they collect. There are several problems with this situation as you look at it closer.

  • The Fee is small - One of the biggest problems with a free service provider is the fact that the fee they get from the local phone company is very small. Like any business, if you cannot afford to keep your company moving forward you are going to run into problems over time. When it comes time to buy additional equipment, enhance existing services or hire personnel you need to have cash flow in the business to support it.
  • Participants get charged - The reason it is a free service is that the Moderator of the call is not charged anything as they are with a regular service. But with a free service you have to access the call by dialing a local number. The number is not local to you or your participants so you have to dial a long distance number. That is how they make their money. So you are forcing your participants to dial long distance to get on your call and they will have to pay their long distance provider the entire time they are on the meeting.
  • Looking to Up sell - Most companies that offer a free service also have an upgraded service that is toll free access but costs per minute. The rate they charge for this service is quite high by today's standards. So they are attracting you to the free service in hopes of upgrading you to a high priced toll free solution once you figure out that the free service is not really free.
  • Limited Capacity - The low fee problem usually means that the free service company can't afford to add a lot of equipment and many times you may go to join a call when they don't have the capacity.
  • Limited Features - Another thing that a free service cannot do is offer as many features as a service provider like Zip Conferencing. They simply don't have the capital available to buy the latest equipment. In fact, many of the free service providers build their own equipment from computer hardware they buy off the shelf.
  • Limited Customer Service - And finally, if you need customer service don't count on it with a free service. The bottom line is you get what you pay for and if you aren't paying anything what do you expect?

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