UPDATED JUNE 2007
Internet (IP) voice and video are now global standards in communication for many industries. Many people have simply circumvented BTL’s blocks, and some have gone so far as canceling BTL in favor of an alternate ISP. It has been some time since this site was updated. We believe it is time for a reminder on how exactly to circumvent BTL and get what the constitution affords you despite the criminal actions of Lord Ashcrook:
- If you simply want to dump BTL, your options are SMART/SpeedNet or satellite. The satellite options are still DirecWay, Starband and now iDirect. We may cover these options as they pertain to VoIP usage in further posts. The goal for this post is to update residents of Belize on bypassing BTL’s VoIP blocks on their high-speed DSL internet services.
- If you use Skype or any other PC-based telephony service, the answer is a software VPN (virtual private network). Most people have used HotspotVPN and Witopia Personal VPN. For technical technical reasons beyond the scope of this post, it is always better to opt for a “UDP-based” VPN. AnchoFree is another variety of VPN that is FREE, but quality has varied greatly with AF expecially on 128kbps connections (BTL’s $100bz/mo ADSL service).
- If you use Vonage or Packet8 or any other SIP adapter-based product, there are two options. The first is to turn your PC, running the PC-based VPN software, into a “router/encrypt-er” for your Vonage box. Many of the country’s IT professional have been quietly implementing this service for their customers. Ask around and you will likely find a technician willing to help you set this up.
- The second option for Vonage users to purchase a dedicated VPN router, a hardware based solution. This alleviates the need for a PC to run the VPN and generally results in a much more stable and clear connection for the voice/video call. This option requires a service provider in the US or any country outside Belize to provide a VPN server to which your hardware can connect.
- The last option is to find a service provider either PC-based or adapater-based that uses the IAX protocol. IAX is a protocol developed along with the open source PBX named Asterisk and is currently NOT blocked in Belize. IAX is a less common IP voice protocol to its big brother SIP, but it works just the same. Future posts will include direct links to IAX service providers and IAX hardware.
The goal of this site is to protect the rights of the residents of Belize. We’re not interested in bowing to BTL’s intimidation. Some comments on this site in the past have suggested that these solutions should be kept quiet. We respect that opinion, but we must also respectfully disagree. BTL is acting criminally. BTL is a piece of a massive criminal scheme to make a few rich British Lords a bit richer. In their circles, Belizeans are a big JOKE. Why should we curb our mutual disrespect and disdain for their behaviour?