In this edition of head to head, we compare VOIPo with Phone.com Home Plus. Phone.com is primarily a business VoIP provider with a home division, and VOIPo is primarily a residential VoIP provider. Will that make the difference? Let’s look at the tale of the tape.
I think I’ve made it clear that I like VOIPo. It’s not that I’m biased, it’s that I feel that they offer the best price, and no other residential VoIP provider comes close. As of this writing, the blowout deal is two years prepaid for $149, which is more expensive than other blowout deals, which have been as low as $129. Still, that’s pretty low. On top of the price, they have a ton of features. This head to head brings a new challenger, Phone.com. Phone.com has residential and virtual office divisions, so it brings home many features that are office features. It also does them in a pretty innovative way. I like that. Below, I will focus on some of the features that are exclusive to, or shared by, either VOIPo or Phone.com.
Standard Call Features, 3-way calling, call forwarding, privacy rules, call routing, day/night/holiday rules, number porting, address book, online voicemail, tech support, free in-network calling
Phone.com Exclusive Features:
Voicemail transcription: For $1.50 per month, Phone.com subscribers can have their voicemails transcribed and emailed to them.
Call transfer: Seamlessly transfer an ongoing call to another phone, such as your cell phone.
Call Screening: Screen your calls to avoid talking to anyone you don’t want to.
Chatcalls: Record and send a short message to your friends and family.
Click to call buttons: Also called Click2dial, call from your desktop without picking up your phone.
411 blocking: Block 411 calls to avoid a surprise bill
Greeting: Leave a recorded greeting for the person who calls you at certain times of day or before the conversation begins.
On hold music: For $.99/mo, even home subscribers can use their own of Phone.com’s library of on hold music.
Text to Greeting: record a “joke of the day” or an usual voice mail greeting.
VOIPo Exclusive Features:
Softphone access/BYOD: VOIPo allows the option of SIP phone and Softphone provisioning, Phone.com does not.
Distinctive Ringtones: Pick a distinctive ringtone on your phone depending on who is calling your home.
VOIPo has a month to month price of $15 for unlimited calls, or a two year prepay for $150, as of this writing. Phone.com has a month to month price of $19.88, or a prepay of $21.56 for one year for unlimited. You can also get a 300 minute plan for 9.88 and $.0049 for overage minutes. That’s still a good plan, and incoming minutes are free.
Overall, I’d say that Phone.com is a solid contender. They have a number of features, like internationall calling block and 411 block, that avoid surprise billing. They have a number of PBX-like features for the home, including find me/follow me and day/night mode that VOIPo also has, but Phone.com has more variety and a slightly bigger feature set. The biggest feature is voicemail transcription, which is available at a reasonable price. VOIPo has an hour of free international minutes, which is good for the international caller, and has the option of a toll free number, even for residential calls.
The Bottom Line: VOIPo continues to be a leader in low price, which makes it my favorite, but Phone.com has a solid feature set that can keep VOIPo on the ropes. For the final bell, I’d say the decision is up to you.