With many people working from home or running a business from the bedroom, residential VoIP services are in demand. These services let you make phone calls over the internet using VoIP (voice over internet protocol) instead of relying on a landline. If you’re looking to turn your house into a smart home in 2021, this is easily one of the best technology upgrades you can make. Best of all, it’s not that expensive.
What Are Residential VoIP Services?
Unlike phone lines, VoIP doesn’t require any additional infrastructure to function. As long as you already have an internet connection at home, you can use VoIP to make and receive calls. You can still keep your traditional phones if you want to, as there are adapters that let you turn regular phones into VoIP phones.
Many VoIP providers target enterprises or small business customers specifically. However, the service they provide to these markets differs because it includes features that only a business would need. For example, you probably don’t need an auto-attendant at home to play wait music for your callers. Therefore, residential VoIP providers focus more on features that make sense for home use, although many include some of their business features as well for people running a home office.
Residential VoIP Features
A top residential VoIP provider will give you everything you need to transform your home phone system into a VoIP environment. This may include a device that connects to your router, or adapters for your regular landline phones. When your home is properly configured, all of your phones will ring when you get a VoIP call.
Look for providers that let you port your original number quickly. You should receive a temporary VoIP number that you can use in the meantime while they transfer your landline number to their service.
Other useful features to look for include apps that allow you to take your home calls on your mobile phone or other device. Look for call forwarding options and advanced call blocking features if spammers bother you. Finally, we love residential providers that offer voicemail transcription services. These take pesky voicemails and turn them into emails that you can read at your convenience.
What Are Some of the Best Residential VoIP Providers?
There are several companies that specialize in residential VoIP service. One of the oldest is Vonage, which has been on the market for over two decades and has an excellent reputation. Another one to consider is Ooma, which has a very unique pricing model and some of the best VoIP equipment in the industry.
Alternatively, you could consider using a service that is more designed for business customers. If you don’t need to retrofit landline phones with VoIP, or want to ditch your landline completely, this could be a good option. Consider RingCentral or Grasshopper as these services are affordable and provide you with all the connectivity you will need.
We have done in-depth reviews and comparisons of many of these services, so check those out if you would like to learn more.