Ooma? Or Magicjack?
Both claim to be convenient and cheap.
MagicJack is a USB device that uses your phone, itself, and software on a computer.
Ooma is a VoIP gateway device that connects your router/modem and regular telephone.
How do they work?
A USB device is mailed to your home. You plug your phone into the magicJack and the magicJack into your computer or router. Install the software, and start making calls.
Again, the device (Ooma Telo) is sent to your home. Ooma works like an analog adapter, because it plugs directly into your modem/router and your phone.
How much do they cost?
Both Ooma and magicJack insist that they do not charge service fees like other phone service providers. But neither Ooma and magicJack are free.
Ooma charges $249.99 upfront for the adapter (ooma telo). It’s a pretty expensive gizmo. The only other thing that you will pay, according to Ooma, is taxes and regulatory fees. That adds up to about $3 a month.
Magicjack, on the other hand, costs $39.95 for the device (and 1 year of service). After the first year, there is an $19.95 annual fee for service. These prices go for the newer magicJack Plus, too.
Ooma and magicJack features are very similar to those offered by VoIP service providers. Other special features only come with magicJack PLUS or Ooma Premier.
Notably, Ooma becomes more complex with its extra adapters and add-ons to the Ooma Telo. Ooma Premier costs $9.99 per month or $119.99 per year. Ooma Premier has features including enhanced voicemail, a 2nd line, 3-way calling, and the mobile iPhone app.
In general, Ooma has more features than magicJack, but not all of Ooma’s features are free.
Like most VoIP service, calling local and long-distance within the country is free. International rates vary, and it still costs money to call other countries with Ooma and magicJack. Rates are usually cheap, however. Ooma also has a prepay plan.
Reviewers have noted problems with voice quality, especially with magicJack. Ooma uses “HD” voice quality, but some people have an echoing issue.
These could be connnection-quality issues; you can check your Internet connection speed with our VoIP Speed Test.
Reviewers have also complained, profusely, about customer service with both magicJack and Ooma. Ooma and magicjack have chat support, but apparently it is very difficult to get problems solved.
MagicJack’s big promotion is its free 30-day trial. However, reviewers have complained that the promised “money-back guarantee” is hard to get. It is difficult to find the correct mailing address to return the unit because the magicJack arrives with no packaging information, for example.
Both Ooma and magicJack have reportedly bad issues with porting over numbers.
Ooma, for example, may send an email to let you know you should get another email soon to start the process of porting over your old phone number—and then Ooma will never send the email.
Other reviewers have stated that their Ooma Telo stops working after one year when the warranty expires. Customer service informs them that they can buy a new one at a discount.
Ooma has also had some problems in past years with outages, effectively cutting off all of its users from phone service.
Overall, the claim to cheap service from magicJack is true. You get what you pay for.
Service is cheap from Ooma once you make up the cost of the unit (or any other adapters you decide to purchase).
Straight to the point: Ooma has more features, but the service is several times more expensive. That's why magicJack is the victor in this comparison. Still, it’s worth comparing to other residential VoIP providers.