With today's busy lifestyle, having voicemail is essential. Unfortunately, there aren't as many companies that offer free voicemail service as there once were, since many free internet services have either gone out of business or started charging. However, there are still some decent free voicemail services available. Since the service varies, you should use this informative guide to choose the one that is best for you (or skip ahead to our list of providers.)
Free Voicemail Features Overview
Some service providers offer free local phone numbers while others provide toll-free numbers. However, with some companies, the number they give you may be out of your area code so long distance charges may apply.
Another difference is the way voicemail messages are retrieved. Some companies allow you to retrieve messages over the phone by dialing your access number. With others you are able to get messages via web as well.
Featured Free Voicemail Provider:
The Free Internet Answering Machine from CallWave is a smart way to receive important calls and keep callers from getting annoying busy signals while you are online, without the expense of an extra phone line for your computer. It works with the "Call Forward On Busy" feature of your phone line to answer calls while you are online. Once activated, callers no longer get annoying busy signals when you are online. Instead, they will hear a brief CallWave greeting after which they can leave a short message at the tone--that you will be able to hear instantly! Best of all, it takes less than five minutes to install.
One unique feature of the Free Internet Answering Machine is that it is only activated while you are online. When you are on the phone you can still use call waiting and your answering machine can still take your messages while you are away. If you want voice-mail even when you are not online, try one of the other free voicemail services.
Free Voicemail Service Providers
This is a list of the best free voicemail services along with comments about each service's special features or limitations:
Offers you an Internet call waiting and voicemail service for your home phone. With this service a window will pop up if you are online and receive a call. You can respond either by disconnecting from the Internet to receive your call, sending a message, or sending the person to voice mail. When you are offline and do not answer your phone within 4-5 rings, your BuzMe voicemail will answer. If you have telephone company voicemail you will have to cancel that service. Messages are retrieved by web or phone. After the 7 day free trial you automatically receive BuzMe's free basic service unless you elect to continue with the Enhanced Internet Call Waiting and Voicemail for $5.95 month.
You get free Efax number where you can receive voicemail and faxes, but your number may not be based in your local area. Listen to your voicemail messages on the phone or on the web. You can even forward the messages from your Efax email to another email account. This service is available in the US and UK.
JFAX.com Free Fax Plus
This service gives you a free personal phone number (your number may not be in your local area code, so long distance charges may apply) you can use to receive voice messages and faxes right in your email.
Voicemail messages received on your personal Xoip number (Netherlands numbers only) are sent directly to your existing email address. You can also listen to your voicemail messages by dialing your own Xoip number.