Review of MagicJack Internet Phone System

I was contacted by a public relations rep to check out the magicJack internet phone system, since I love free stuff I said I would absolutely try it (hint hint PR People…contact me)!

Setting up and Registering my MagicJack Account

I couldn’t believe how easy it was to set up the magicJack, I literally plugged the unit into my computer’s USB and it started updating and installing the software using my broadband internet.  Once the updating and installing completed it went right into registration:

magicJack Screen Shot2

The account registration was pretty simple and straightforward…name, address etc.  It did not ask for a credit card, but that may because the unit was sent to me via a public relations firm.  After I registered my account, the amount of upsell attempted was incredible.  Among other questions, it asked me if I wanted:

  • To choose my number – cool option!  If I stick with this product I may register 516-XXX-Evan!
  • If I wanted to insure the product
  • Prepay International minutes
  • Prepay for a lower amount for 5 years of service

magicJack Screen Shot - Insurance magicJack Screen Shot - upsell

Regardless of the upsell attempts I finally got to plug in my phone and use the actual software.

MagicJack Screen Shot

Interestingly, you can dial from the phone you don’t need to use the software makes it very natural.  Considering the only phone I had the desire to move around so I could test the system was a mid 90’s Saved by the Bell-esq light up phone, I was curious if I wanted to, could I plug in a normal portable-wireless phone and a review of the magicJack website indicates that you can also plug in a portable telephone.

Pros of the magicJack System

The biggest positive I can come up with is the price; I pay more per month with Verizon than the what magicJack costs for the entire year!  The second pro is that the ease.  I am not sure why, but when I think about turning my computer into a phone I assumed it was going to be complicated with lots of settings.  The people at magicJack really figured if they were going to go this route – ease was a must.

The option to create a vanity number could be a huge benefit in certain situations.  I know I’d love if my number was 555-Evan, but then again I am weird like that.   Additionally, the ability to change your phone number almost at will could be a great option if you needed to avoid phone calls, for whatever shady reason.  MagicJack also allows you to use your computer’s microphone/speaker system or use a connected headset so an actual phone may not be necessary.

Depending on the website you read, people either love the actual service or hate it.  I will tell you that my short experience with the product was pleasant.  The phone clarity was adequate and there were no problems with incoming or out going phone calls.

Negatives of magicJack

There are a couple big drawbacks associated with magicJack, however I don’t think any one of the drawbacks is enough to completely ignore the product.  First, you can’t port your number.  This is huge negative if you are thinking about using this product for your business.  Second, your computer/internet needs to be on and working.  I really don’t think this is a huge deal anymore, because without power I would be forced to search (likely in the dark) for the previously mentioned 90’s light up phone, since every phone in my house is a portable wireless phone that requires power anyway!

Another drawback of magicjack is that it has to be connected via USB all the time with the phone connected.  In my house, like most houses today, we have laptops so it would be just weird carrying around the phone with me all the time.  The problem may be minimized by using a headset or the speaker system option.

Am I switching to magicJack?

Simply put, no I am not switching to magicJack, but it has nothing to do with the product but rather my home situation.  The Wife runs a business out of our home, and I/we are just not ready to make the leap.  However, if that business ever stopped I would 100% get this product since I feel like a hardwired phone is way overpriced.

Do you have any experiences with magicJack?

This is not a paid post, but I do have affiliate links in the post.

8 Responses to Review of MagicJack Internet Phone System

  1. Hey Evan, I haven’t tried MagicJack but I was actually thinking of using it as a second line for business purposes. It’s something I would rarely use but it would be good to have and the price is certainly compelling.

      • No, but I would rather have a dedicated line. It’s not something I’d use very often but I’d rather not be getting business and personal calls together. Just a preference.

  2. I’m a little confused as to the benefits of this versus skype. . . we use it to call (free) anyone with skype or for very low cost any regular phone here or abroad. For a small extra charge, you can get a phone number people can use from a regular phone–we also have a phone that we plug into our USB drive because it makes sound quality better for people talking to us.

    Sounds about the same, right?

    • Despite people swearing by it, I have never tried skype. However, the way you describe skype it sounds VERY similar to the system I got to try out.

      Really the way to compare would be what is the low cost of skype to call land line/cell vs. magicJack’s cost to call a landline/cell?

      • We have Skype, but we only use it when my wife wants to call her relatives in Italy. The international rates are dirt cheap, but there is a charge for calling domestic landlines too so I don’t think that’s a viable option. I’ve heard good things about Vonage too.

  3. My father-in-law bought one and loves it. He said it was so simple to setup and get running. I’ll attest to that part, usually he calls me if he has computer issues :)

  4. The only issue I have with magicjack is that the computer has to be left running. I prefer the Ooma voip system better which doesn’t have to be plugged into your pc instead is attached to your router.

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