VoIPo Review by WhichVoIP
The company VoIPo is one of the most recognized names in the hosted VoIP industry and for good reasons. Coming from the people who created the popular web hosting platform Host Gator, their services are based on a powerful internet platform designed to support everyone from home users to big business, and further caters to those constantly on the go. The company was started in 2006 and offers both residential and business VoIP services in the United States. The service is currently not available to Canadian residents. Each of the service plans include unlimited calling to US / Canada numbers and there are also 60 minutes of international calling included each month to select destinations.
One of the best parts about VOIPo as a company is the fact that they have very few plans which simplifies the selection process. For starters, both the residential and small business plans are compiled into a single category for an introductory upfront fee of $149, which equates to $6.21 a month over two years. For this price, you receive two years of service and an ATA (analog telephone adapter) which is used to directly connect your regular phone to the internet.
Even with the basic residential or small business service, VOIPo comes with several additional features. The ATA the company provides for connecting your telephone is leased to you for free, which is not the case for many companies that provide similar services. Other features such as 3 way calling, call blocking, voicemail, SIP-based softphone capabilities for computer platforms and mobile devices, 60 minutes of included international calling to select countries per month, as well as several other features like online fax capabilities.
You have the ability to transfer your number to their service for free in most instances. This can be used in conjunction with the Cloud VoIP service that starts at $3 a month. This is very useful in instances where you would like to keep an established phone number but do not require a full-fledged phone service for the number. A 30 day unconditional guarantee is also offered so if you are not pleased, you can send back their ATA device within this time frame for a full refund.
Additional business services are available such as a hosted business PBX solution. For a flat $20 monthly fee, they will host an online PBX with SIP capabilities. This service has much broader feature capabilities than the standard residential or small business solution such as an IVR (interactive voice response) system and correlating auto attendant features. Other common business features are packaged with the service such as call conferencing, modifiable call queues and many others that can be controlled via a web based administration VoIPo login (vpanel) portal.
An extensive knowledgebase, as well as live chat, forums and a customer support phone line are available through their website.
Though very pro-consumer, there are additional expenses that may come along with the service. Because the company is a qualified telecommunications company, you will be required to pay taxes based on your location. Though these fees are relatively small, two years worth of taxes can add up.
Some of the features and pricing require more details and explanation. For example, the number porting feature is not always free – a form must be submitted (it can anywhere from a week to 45 days to process) and, though not a common occurrence, a fee could be assessed in certain situations, or the transfer could be denied.
The ATA is provided on a free lease basis and as such remains the property of VoIPo. While there is a $49.95 fee if you damage it in any way, this type of replacement charge is common. If you are not comfortable with using a leased device you can always buy your own device and use it with the service. Check first to ensure the device you are planning to purchase can be supported.
A VoIPo softphone is also available for mobile, tablets or computer devices,although the company does not have its own application. This means that a user will need to use a third party application for either a computer or smart phone which will require additional configuration. The company recommends X-Lite but other applications such as ZoiPer can be utilized.