By: Amy Jacquin

If you're online a lot, you probably hear people complain about trying to call you, but always getting a busy signal. Catch-A-Call promises to solve that problem, by allowing you to receive calls or faxes without disconnecting you from the internet.

Michelle Wallace has teenagers, who love to surf the net. She's tired of people getting busy signals whenever they try calling. So
this mother from Mathews is
anxious to help us test the $50 Catch-A-Call.

It's supposed to keep your internet connection, yet still allow phone calls to come through... The picture on the box implies you can actually surf the net while on the phone. That's misleading. It's only supposed to put your internet on hold when a call comes in. Call waiting is required. But look at the yellow box on the bottom of your screen... In small print it says it'll put your internet on hold for 10 to 30 seconds only!


There's no way!
" laughs Michelle. "
Who talks for 30 seconds?!
I have teenagers."

We test the call waiting service first, just to prove it works.
Amy Jacquin
Michelle from
cell phone, while
Michelle is already on the line. The call waiting works perfectly.

Next we hook up Catch-A-Call. Directions are easy to follow, and include a diagram.


We have a fax machine, but it's all in one, so it's hooked through my computer
," explains Michelle
his goes to the telephone I answer. This is right into
computer. And this one is to
wall outlet


You're online?
" Amy asks Michelle. "
I'm going to try calling your home number from my cell phone. If it works like it says it's supposed to, this thing should ring and allow you to pick it up, without disconnecting the internet

But Catch-A-Call kicks her off line.


So instead of putting it on hold and connecting the call waiting, it disconnected m
e," Michelle shakes her head. "
I mean, we didn't even have the 30 seconds to chance it!

And Michelle notices she can't get her computer to respond to anything!


For some reason it's not even letting my phone hang up now!
" she says, as the loud busy signal comes from both the phone and computer.


ut it eventually does hang up.
It just took awhile, I guess, to do that
," says Michelle.

We give Catch-A-Call one more try, and have someone try to send a fax while Michelle is online.


It kicked me offline
," she says again, as soon as she picks the phone up.


he person faxing says their machine didn't even get a line confirmation!


I would say it doesn't work at all!
" Michelle laughs. "
It's a waste of money. It's a waste of time. My option is to get a second phone line

Whatever you do, DON'T spend $50 on Catch-A-Call. It flunks out. F