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Hosted PBX Review Summaries

Pros:

  • ChooseWhat Check (badge)300 included minutes (our Market Standard is 150 minutes)
  • Unlimited extensions
  • 30-day free trial (300 minutes, No credit card required)
  • International phone numbers available
  • Free to port existing number into the service
  • Free (800) toll-free number
  • Free vanity number
  • Works with softphone (i.e. a computer used as a phone)
  • 24/7 customer support
  • Mobile app available for Android and BlackBerry

Cons:

  • At the time of this review, there were no notable cons

Conclusion:

[Last Updated: March 22, 2014]

Phone.com’s Shared Minutes plan is an excellent value and one of the highest quality services we've reviewed. This plan costs $9.99 per month for 300 minutes and unlimited extensions. You can get even greater savings by paying annually. Phone.com's free trial lasts 30 days and includes 300 minutes. They offer Find Me/Follow Me that sets forwarding rules and an auto attendant which is a custom menu that directs calls. They also offer voicemail alerts and voicemail-to-text transcription. You can store unlimited voicemails for 90 days. They let you send faxes online for free, and when using our coupon code (listed on their signup form) you will be given another number for free that you can use to receive faxes online. Phone.com offers good phone, email and live chat support 24/7.

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Phone.com's Features

Reviewed Plan

Shared Minutes

Monthly Fee

$9.99

Annual Discount

N/A

Included Minutes

300

Activation Fee

Free

Free Trial

30 days

Extensions

Unlimited

Voicemail

Yes

Voicemail By Email

Yes

Find Me / Follow Me

Yes

Auto-Attendant

Yes

Internet Fax

Yes

International Phone Numbers

Yes

Overage Fees

$0.05

Highest Minute Plan

Unlimited


Pros:

  • ChooseWhat Check (badge)Save 50% when you pay for a year in advance
  • 300 included minutes (our Market Standard is 150 minutes)
  • Unlimited extensions
  • International phone numbers available
  • 30-day free trial
  • Works with softphone (i.e. a computer used as a phone)
  • Smart system (ACD) queuing for incoming calls

Cons:

  • At the time of our most recent review there were no notable cons.

Conclusion:

[Last updated 3-22-2014]

Virtual PBX’s VPBX-5 plan is a good value and one of the highest quality services we've reviewed. This plan costs $19.99 per month (or save 50% buy paying $119.88 annually) for 300 minutes and an unlimited number of extensions. Virtual PBX’s free trial lasts 30 days and includes 50 minutes. They offer Find Me/Follow Me (which sets forwarding rules) and an auto attendant (which is a custom menu that directs calls). They also offer voicemail alerts via email, but email-to-text transcription is not available. You can save up to 100 voicemails online indefinitely. The service also includes send and receive Internet fax service. Virtual PBX’s customer support is average quality on par with their competitors, and they offer phone, email and live chat support 5 days a week as well as 24x7x365 emergency support.

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Virtual PBX's Features

Reviewed Plan

Startup

Monthly Fee

$19.99

Annual Discount

$9.99/month

Included Minutes

300

Activation Fee

Free

Free Trial

30 days

Extensions

Unlimited

Voicemail

Yes

Voicemail By Email

Yes

Find Me / Follow Me

Yes

Auto-Attendant

Yes

Internet Fax

Yes

International Phone Numbers

Yes

Overage Fees

$0.05

Highest Minute Plan

5000


Pros:

  • Save 50% when you pay for a year in advance
  • 300 included minutes (our market standard is x minutes)
  • Free to port exisiting number into the service
  • Works with softphone (i.e. a computer used as a phone)
  • 24/7 customer support
  • Mobile app available for iPhone

Cons:

  • Only 2 extensions included

Conclusion:

[Last update 3/22/2014]

RingCentral provides a high quality, feature rich virtual PBX service. Their Pro plan is their least expensive plan, but it is only a good value if you pay annually to receive the highly reduced rate. This plan gives you 2 extensions and 300 minutes for $119.88/year (which works out to $9.99/ month). If you sign up for an monthly contract, the price is doubled to $19.99/month. Their higher level plans are also an excellent value. They offer a free trial for 7 days that includes 30 minutes. They also offer Find Me/Follow Me (which sets forwarding rules) and an auto attendant (which is a custom menu that directs calls).  They also offer voicemail-to-email alerts, but they do not offer voicemail-to-text transcription. You can store unlimited voicemails for up to 30 days. They include an Internet fax capability with their virtual pbx service. RingCentral has high quality phone, email and live chat support that is available 24/7.

 

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RingCentral's Features

Reviewed Plan

Pro

Monthly Fee

$19.99

Annual Discount

$9.99/month

Included Minutes

300

Activation Fee

Free

Free Trial

7 days

Extensions

2

Voicemail

Yes

Voicemail By Email

Yes

Find Me / Follow Me

Yes

Auto-Attendant

Yes

Internet Fax

Yes

International Phone Numbers

No

Overage Fees

$0.05

Highest Minute Plan

Unlimited


Pros:

  • 30-day free trial
  • Free to port existing number into the service

Cons:

  • At the time of our most recent review there were no notable cons.

Conclusion:

[Last Update: May 22, 2013]

For $9.75, Virtual Call System's Starter plan gives you 100 minutes and five extensions which does not offer as good a value as other services we've reviewed. They offer a 30-day free trial to test their service as well as internet fax service, but their below average customer support cements the fact that there are better deals to be had.

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Virtual Call System's Features

Reviewed Plan

Starter

Monthly Fee

$9.75

Annual Discount

N/A

Included Minutes

100

Activation Fee

Free

Free Trial

30 days

Extensions

5

Voicemail

Yes

Voicemail By Email

Yes

Find Me / Follow Me

Yes

Auto-Attendant

Yes

Internet Fax

Yes

International Phone Numbers

No

Overage Fees

$0.06

Highest Minute Plan

2500


Pros:

  • 300 included minutes (our Market Standard is 150 minutes)
  • Free to add another phone line
  • Free to port existing number into the service
  • 24/7 customer support
  • Mobile apps available for iPhone, Android, and Blackberry

Cons:

  • Only two extensions included
  • Internet fax service not available

Conclusion:

[Last updated 3/22/2014]

If you don't need more than two extensions or Internet fax service, eVoice's basic plan gives you a good value and a lot of monthly minutes. This plan costs $12.99 per month for 300 minutes and two extensions. They offer a 30 day free trial to test their service before you buy. They offer Find Me/Follow Me (which sets forwarding rules) and an auto attendant (which is a custom menu that directs calls), as well as voicemail alerts via email. You can get voicemail-to-text transcription for an additional fee. You can store an unlimited number of voicemails for up to 30 days, but upgrading to eVoice Plus will give you unlimited storage. eVoice does not offer Internet fax service, which does not meet our Market Standard. eVoice offers good phone and email support 24/7.

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eVoice's Features

Reviewed Plan

300 Minutes

Monthly Fee

$12.99

Annual Discount

N/A

Included Minutes

300

Activation Fee

Free

Free Trial

30 days

Extensions

2

Voicemail

Yes

Voicemail By Email

Yes

Find Me / Follow Me

Yes

Auto-Attendant

Yes

Internet Fax

No

International Phone Numbers

Canada only

Overage Fees

$0.04

Highest Minute Plan

4000


Pros:

  • 300  included minutes (our market standard is 150 minutes)
  • Smart system (ACD) queuing for incoming calls

Cons:

  • Conference calling costs $5 a month with this plan

Conclusion:

At $9.95 per month for five extensions and 300 minutes, FreedomVoice’s FreedomStart is an excellent value, but other services we've reviewed offer more extensions and the same minutes for the same price. They offer a free trial for 15 days that includes the number of minutes in your selected plan. They offer Find Me/Follow Me (which sets forwarding rules) and an auto attendant (which is a custom menu that directs calls), as well as voicemail to email and voicemail alerts. You can save an unlimited number of voicemails for up to 30 days or even get voice-to-text transcription for an additional fee. They include Internet fax service with your plan. FreedomVoice offers quality phone and email support available 24/7.

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FreedomVoice's Features

Reviewed Plan

FreedomStart

Monthly Fee

$9.95

Annual Discount

N/A

Included Minutes

300

Activation Fee

Free

Free Trial

15 days

Extensions

5

Voicemail

Yes

Voicemail By Email

Yes

Find Me / Follow Me

Yes

Auto-Attendant

Yes

Internet Fax

Yes

International Phone Numbers

No

Overage Fees

$0.05

Highest Minute Plan

2500


Pros:

  • Save 33% when you pay for a year in advance
  • 300 included minutes (our market standard is 150 minutes)
  • Free 800 toll-free number
  • Free to port existing number into the service
  • Smart system (ACD) queuing for incoming calls
  • Mobile app available

Cons:

  • Conference calling costs $4.95 with this plan

Conclusion:

Halloo’s Office Startup plan has a monthly fee of $14.95 for 100 extensions and 300 minutes, which is a good value. They offer Find Me/Follow Me (which sets forwarding rules) and an auto attendant (which is a custom menu that directs calls). They also offer voicemail alerts via email, but voicemail transcription is not available. You can save 60 minutes of voicemails online for an unlimited amount of time. They include receive-only Internet fax with this plan, which does not meet our Market Standard for sending and receiving faxes. Halloo’s and they provides good phone and email customer support five days a week.

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Halloo's Features

Reviewed Plan

Office Startup

Monthly Fee

$14.95

Annual Discount

$9.95/month

Included Minutes

300

Activation Fee

Free

Free Trial

No, but

Extensions

100

Voicemail

Yes

Voicemail By Email

Yes

Find Me / Follow Me

Yes

Auto-Attendant

Yes

Internet Fax

Receive Only

International Phone Numbers

No

Overage Fees

$0.07

Highest Minute Plan

2500


Pros:

  • Unlimited extensions
  • 24/7 customer support
  • Mobile app available for iPhone and Blackberry

Cons:

  • No included minutes

Conclusion:

Grasshopper gives you unlimited extensions but does not include any minutes with their Pay As You Grow plan, and there is a $5.63 “taxes and surcharges” fee billed to you upon creating your account.  Other services we've reviewed offer significantly more minutes and unlimited extensions for the same price.  They don’t offer a free trial, but they have a 30-day money-back guarantee.  They offer Find Me/Follow Me (which sets forwarding rules) and an auto attendant (which is a custom menu that directs calls).  They also offer voicemail alerts by email and voicemail-to-text transcriptions for an additional fee.  You can store unlimited voicemails for 30 days and they include receive-only Internet fax service.  Grasshopper has phone support that is available 24/7.

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Grasshopper's Features

Reviewed Plan

Pay As You Grow

Monthly Fee

$12

Annual Discount

N/A

Included Minutes

0

Activation Fee

Free

Free Trial

No, but

Extensions

Unlimited

Voicemail

Yes

Voicemail By Email

Yes

Find Me / Follow Me

Yes

Auto-Attendant

Yes

Internet Fax

Receive Only

International Phone Numbers

No

Overage Fees

$0.06

Highest Minute Plan

10,000


Pros:

  • Free 800 toll-free number
  • Free vanity number

Cons:

  • No free trial
  • Can't receive voicemails via email
  • Conference calling not available

Conclusion:

Messaging Service's plan has a high monthly fee of $39.95 for five extensions and 1500 monthly minutes, but the effective price per minute makes this plan inexpensive.  But other services we've reviewed offer significantly more extensions for a cheaper price.  If you want conference calling features, you should find a different service, as they don't offer any.  They do not offer a free trial of their service. They offer Find Me/Follow Me (which sets forwarding rules) and an auto attendant (which is a custom menu that directs calls). They also offer voicemail-to-email and voicemail alerts, but they do not offer voice-to-text transcription. You can save an unlimited number of messages for up to three weeks. They include receive and forward Internet fax service, which does not meet our Market Standard. Messaging Service offers high quality customer support, and they offer phone, live chat and email support seven days a week.

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Messaging Service's Features

Reviewed Plan

Direct Receptionist 2

Monthly Fee

$39.95

Annual Discount

N/A

Included Minutes

1500

Activation Fee

Free

Free Trial

No

Extensions

5

Voicemail

Yes

Voicemail By Email

Yes

Find Me / Follow Me

Yes

Auto-Attendant

Yes

Internet Fax

Receive and forward only

International Phone Numbers

No

Overage Fees

$0.06

Highest Minute Plan

1500


Pros:

  • 500 included minutes (our Market Standard is 150 minutes)
  • Smart system (ACD) queuing for incoming calls
  • Mobile app available for iPhone and Android

Cons:

  • $15 activation fee

Conclusion:

Offering 500 minutes and ten extensions for $19.95 per month, iTeleCenter's Basic plan gives you a high number of monthly minutes and a typical number of extensions when compared to ChooseWhat's Market Standard.  However, they charge a $15 start-up fee and their free trial length of 14 days is also rather low. iTeleCenter's customer support is average, and they offer phone chat support Monday through Saturday during regular business hours.

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iTelecenter's Features

Reviewed Plan

Basic

Monthly Fee

$19.95

Annual Discount

N/A

Included Minutes

500

Activation Fee

$15.00

Free Trial

14 days

Extensions

10

Voicemail

Yes

Voicemail By Email

Yes

Find Me / Follow Me

Yes

Auto-Attendant

Yes

Internet Fax

Yes

International Phone Numbers

No

Overage Fees

$0.06

Highest Minute Plan

5000


Pros:

  • At the time of our most recent review there were no notable pros.

Cons:

  • High monthly fee
  • No included minutes
  • Can't get additional extensions
  • Local numbers not available
  • $5.99 recurring monthly fee for 800 toll-free numbers
  • $40 set-up fee and $5.99 recurring monthly fee for vanity numbers
  • $40 one-time fee and $1.99 recurring monthly fee to port existing number into the service
  • No Follow-Me function (to set call forwarding rules)
  • Conference calling not available
  • No free trial available

Conclusion:

uReach’s uAttendant plan has an expensive monthly fee of $24.99 and doesn’t include any minutes. Also, beware of recurring monthly fees for 800 numbers, vanity numbers and ported numbers. uReach does not offer a free trial but does offer a 30-day money back guarantee and charges your used minutes.

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uReach's Features

Reviewed Plan

uAttendant

Monthly Fee

$24.99

Annual Discount

N/A

Included Minutes

0

Activation Fee

Free

Free Trial

No, but

Extensions

10

Voicemail

Yes

Voicemail By Email

Yes

Find Me / Follow Me

No

Auto-Attendant

Yes

Internet Fax

Yes

International Phone Numbers

No

Overage Fees

$0.07

Highest Minute Plan

0


Pros:

  • Free international phone numbers
  • Free 800 toll-free number
  • Smart system (ACD) queuing for incoming calls
  • Low overage rates
  • Unlimited extensions
  • Works with softphone (i.e. a computer used as a phone)

Cons:

  • Conference calling not available
  • Internet Fax feature not available

Conclusion:

While PBX Plus' 125 Minutes plan has an effective price per minute of $0.08, there are competive plans which offer more minutes for the same price. For $9.99 per month, you receive 125 minutes and unlimited extensions. They offer a 30-day free trial to test their service. They offer Find Me/Follow Me (which sets forwarding rules) and an auto attendant (which is a custom menu that directs calls), as well as voicemail-to-email and voicemail alerts. You can save unlimited voicemails for up to 60 days. PBX Plus'  phone, email and live chat customer support is high quality.

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PBX Plus's Features

Reviewed Plan

125 Minutes

Monthly Fee

$9.99

Annual Discount

N/A

Included Minutes

125

Activation Fee

Free

Free Trial

30 days

Extensions

Unlimited

Voicemail

Yes

Voicemail By Email

Yes

Find Me / Follow Me

Yes

Auto-Attendant

Yes

Internet Fax

No

International Phone Numbers

Free

Overage Fees

$0.04

Highest Minute Plan

3000


Pros:

  • 2000 included minutes (our Market Standard is 150 minutes)
  • International phone numbers available
  • Free 800 toll free number
  • 30-day free trial
  • Free to port existing number into the service
  • Mobile app available for iPhone, Blackberry, and Android
  • Smart system (ACD) queuing for incoming calls

Cons:

  • High monthly fee
  • Only four extensions included

Conclusion:

[Last Updated 3/26]

Onebox’s lowest price plan is $49.95, which is more expensive than any entry level plan, but they include four extensions and 2000 minutes. Their effective price per minute is $0.025, which makes this plan a fantastic deal for anyone requiring a lot of monthly minutes. They offer a free trial for 30 days that includes  minutes. They offer Find Me/Follow Me (which sets forwarding rules) and an auto attendant (which is a custom menu that directs calls), as well as voicemail to email and voicemail alerts. You can even get voice-to-text transcription for an additional fee. 1 GB of voicemails may be saved for an unlimited time, which is excellent for anyone recording a large volume of messages. Onebox’s phone, email and live chat high quality customer support is available five days a week.

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Onebox's Features

Reviewed Plan

2000 Plan

Monthly Fee

$49.95

Annual Discount

N/A

Included Minutes

2000

Activation Fee

Free

Free Trial

30 days

Extensions

4

Voicemail

Yes

Voicemail By Email

Yes

Find Me / Follow Me

Yes

Auto-Attendant

Yes

Internet Fax

Yes

International Phone Numbers

Yes

Overage Fees

$0.05

Highest Minute Plan

12000 minutes


Pros:

  • Unlimited extensions
  • Free 800 toll-free number

Cons:

  • No free trial
  • Conference calling not available

Conclusion:

If you need unlimited extensions, VoiceNation’s NextPBX offers a good deal, but without conference calling features they don't stand up to competitors who offer more minutes and better features. This plan costs $9.95 per month for 100 minutes and unlimited extensions. While they do offer Internet fax service and significant voicemail storage capability, there are better deals in the Virtual PBX market.

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Voice Nation's Features

Reviewed Plan

NextPBX Business

Monthly Fee

$9.95

Annual Discount

N/A

Included Minutes

100

Activation Fee

Free

Free Trial

No, but

Extensions

Unlimited

Voicemail

Yes

Voicemail By Email

Yes

Find Me / Follow Me

Yes

Auto-Attendant

Yes

Internet Fax

Yes

International Phone Numbers

No

Overage Fees

$0.06

Highest Minute Plan

2500


Pros:

  • Free 800 toll-free number
  • Smart system (ACD) queuing for incoming calls

Cons:

  • Can't get additional extensions
  • $35 setup fee for vanity numbers
  • Unable to port existing numbers into the service
  • Conference calling not available

Conclusion:

Innoport’s Jump Start plan offers a good deal if you don't need conference calling features or more than five extensions (they don't let you add extra extensions), but other services we've reviewed offer more minutes, extensions and features.  Instead of a free trial, they give you a free credit of $20 or $35 upon account creation depending on the plan you select. This can make getting your money back rather convoluted if you decide their service isn't for you. While they do offer internet faxing and customer support, Innoport provides no clear advantage over their competitors at the time of this review.

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Innoport's Features

Reviewed Plan

Jump Start

Monthly Fee

$9.95

Annual Discount

N/A

Included Minutes

150

Activation Fee

Free

Free Trial

No, but

Extensions

5

Voicemail

Yes

Voicemail By Email

Yes

Find Me / Follow Me

Yes

Auto-Attendant

Yes

Internet Fax

Yes

International Phone Numbers

No

Overage Fees

$0.07

Highest Minute Plan

400+


Pros:

  • Unlimited extensions
  • Free to port existing number into the service
  • Smart system (ACD) queuing for incoming calls

Cons:

  • High overage rates
  • Vanity numbers not available
  • Can't receive voicemails via email
  • Conference calling not available
  • Internet fax service not available

Conclusion:

VoiceShot offers 100 to 166 monthly minutes and unlimited extensions for 9 cents per minute or $9 to $14.94, which meets our basic monthly fee Market Standard. They offer custom pricing that allows you to pay for an exact amount of minutes you desire on a per month basis, but lack common virtual PBX features like voicemail to email, conference calling, and internet fax. We recommend VoiceShot for users seeking an amount of minutes not offered elsewhere.

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VoiceShot's Features

Reviewed Plan

Custom 150 Minutes

Monthly Fee

$13.50

Annual Discount

N/A

Included Minutes

150

Activation Fee

Free

Free Trial

Yes

Extensions

Unlimited

Voicemail

Yes

Voicemail By Email

No

Find Me / Follow Me

Yes

Auto-Attendant

Yes

Internet Fax

No

International Phone Numbers

No

Overage Fees

$0.10

Highest Minute Plan

2500+