After reviewing 18 different providers, we recommend Nextiva’s VoIP phone service for most because it’s affordable, comprehensive, and easy to use with unlimited calling and crystal-clear quality.
Whether you’re looking for call center features, a customer service platform, a basic VoIP system for your small business, remote work collaboration solutions, or something else entirely, it has everything you need to keep your business connected. Get started with Nextiva or keep reading to learn more about the other top VoIP providers on the market.
The Best VoIP Services: Our Top Picks
- The clear winner: Nextiva
- Decent alternatives: RingCentral, Ooma, Zoom, and Vonage
- Budget-friendly: Phone.com, 1-VoIP, and OpenPhone
- International-focused: 8×8, Aircall, and GoTo Connect
- Call center-specific: Dialpad, 11Sight, and CallHippo
- Free for up to 10 users: 3CX
Our VoIP Providers Review Process
Our research team started with 18 VoIP phone systems and examined them from every possible angle—we explored common use cases and unique scenarios for potential buyers. We also looked at how each stacked up in technical areas, including:
- Call handling
- Outbound efficiency
- Call recording and transcription
- Hardware requirements
- Number porting
- Call center features
Ease of implementation, user interface, and price were also weighed heavily on our review process.
Along the way, we eliminated two providers we’d never recommend to anyone because of poor customer service, a lack of business features, and negative reputations.
At the end of our months-long project, we had 16 viable VoIP services and over 150 pages of research–we compiled everything you need to know about what we found below.
Nextiva: The Best VoIP Phone Service for Most Businesses
Nextiva is our favorite VoIP phone service provider. It’s inexpensive, packed with features, and provides three ways to get support if you have any problems.
Beyond its unmatched quality and reliability, Nextiva shines above the crowd for its ability to meet every possible use case. For small businesses, large organizations, sales teams, inbound or outbound call centers, internal communication, traditional office environments, or remote work—Nextiva does it all.
With guided step-by-step instructions in the admin portal and professional installation services, Nextiva makes implementing VoIP phone service a breeze.
If you need new phone numbers, you can choose between local, toll-free, or vanity numbers. Already have a number you want to keep?
You can transfer that over in less than five minutes.
Whether you want to make and receive calls from desk phones, IP phones, softphones, or cell phones, you get full control and flexibility over your system.
On the technical side, you can use the multi-level auto attendant or AI-powered IVR to direct incoming calls with laser precision. You’ll also be able to build custom flows to guide callers through queuing, screening, and reaching the right person.
You’ll also benefit from standard features like call groups, call forwarding, transferring, and analytics.
Most plans include unlimited video chat and messages between teams, which includes private messaging groups, file sharing, and other collaborative tools.
Everything above is enhanced further by a handful of critical integrations, including the top CRMs, ERPs, and marketing platforms.
Plans start at $17.95 per user per month, making it one of the lowest cost options at scale. The cost per user varies slightly depending on your total user count, plan tier, and billing terms.
Check out our in-depth Nextiva review to learn more.
RingCentral: Harder Implementation, Better Value for International
In terms of overall quality and reliability, you can’t go wrong with RingCentral or Nextiva. But Nextiva definitely has the edge for higher texting limits, stronger analytics, more toll-free minutes, and higher video conferencing limits.
It’s also way easier to set up than RingCentral.
RingCentral has more advanced features for midsize to large businesses or call centers, which makes it tougher to implement and get familiar with. Especially if you don’t need all of them.
However, RingCentral is better for international calling and supports a wider range of integrations. If you’re torn between these two providers, we have a complete breakdown that compares Nextiva and RingCentral side-by-side.
If you have a true global presence, RingCentral makes it easy to acquire localized phone numbers in over 100 countries.
While other providers offer numbers outside of the US or Canada, RingCentral blows the competition away in terms of selection. With such a vast array of options, you’ll be able to build trust and offer localized service no matter where your customers are.
The best part about RingCentral is that there are multiple international options to choose from, depending on your call volume. The pay-as-you-go setup (with great rates) is affordable for infrequent international calling.
But you can also opt for a specialized plan with unlimited global calling.
Aside from its VoIP features, you can set up conference calls or video chats with up to 200 participants at one time or utilize the unlimited faxing on many RingCentral plans to send documents and materials from one far-flung work location to another.
RingCentral’s phone systems start at $20 per user per month, making it a few dollars more expensive per month compared to Nextiva if you have more than 50 users.
For less than that, the difference in price is negligible.
Check out our RingCentral review to learn more about it.
Ooma: Easier Setup, But Lacks Scalability and Advanced Features
Ooma’s shining star is also its Achilles’ heel. It’s by far the easiest VoIP phone system to set up—you can do it yourself without any professional assistance or IT support.
It’s easy to do because the platform is pretty bare-bones. It’s not as scalable, and it’s far more limited than Nextiva (even though they’re nearly the same price).
Ooma has limited integration options and only provides basic analytics features. There’s no option for HIPAA compliance, and it’s missing lots of advanced call management features, AI features, and other capabilities you’ll get with the two options above.
This is fine if you’re a small business that plans to stay small. But if you want room to grow, we strongly recommend you go with Nextiva instead.
Overall, Ooma works best for smaller companies that still have most or all of their employees in an office under one roof.
You can often use equipment you already have t as long as it’s compatible or implement Ooma’s truly plug-and-play phones that are ready to go out of the box.
While the functionality may not be super advanced, you’re still getting over 50 standard features, including call forwarding, transfers, extensions, and hold music, for $19.95 per user per month.
But if you want access to Ooma’s desktop app, text messaging, video conferencing, and other perks, you’ll need to upgrade to Ooma Office Pro—starting at $24.95 per user per month.
Many of these things come standard with Nextiva’s entry-level plan that’s $5 to $8 cheaper per user per month.
For more on Ooma, you can read the full review here.
Zoom: Affordable Pay-As-You-Go, But Less-Than-Ideal Support
Zoom stands out as one of the strongest options on the market for online meetings. But it also offers VoIP phone, chat, and conferencing plans too.
Its mobile app is actually one of the best in the category.
If calling isn’t a frequent part of your day-to-day, Zoom’s pay-as-you-go plan may be a great fit as long as you just need something basic–you’ll have to pay extra for analytics, insights, and other common features that come standard elsewhere.
Paying for these things will really drive up the cost, even if you opt for Zoom’s unlimited calling plan. While the interface is easy to use, its customer support leaves a lot to be desired.
Many users also say the overall user experience and navigating the platform are subpar.
With that said, Zoom does have similar integration capabilities to Nextiva, which is great. It also offers an unlimited international calling plan for 15 countries with affordable per-minute rates for other locations.
Zoom’s pay-as-you-go plan starts at $10 per user per month plus per-minute charges for outbound calls.
Unlimited calling starts at $15 per user per month, which is the cheapest price on our list. Paying for additional features (if you need them) will quickly raise the price beyond what you’d pay for the same functionality with Nextiva or RingCentral.
Get all the details in our full review of Zoom.
Vonage: Affordable Hardware-Free Plan, But Add-ons Add Up
If your business doesn’t need physical phones, Vonage is cheaper than the other VoIP providers we reviewed.
But that low price comes at a cost—you’re getting limited support and only get barebones functionality. It’s fine if you just need something super basic and don’t care about 24/7 support.
But the second you start purchasing add-ons, Vonage is no longer worth it. You’ll actually end up paying more than you would for the same features with a different provider.
Overall, we feel that Nextiva is a better value than Vonage, even if your business is small and you don’t need any hardware.
Vonage is also a bit rigid compared to other options on the market. It’s tough getting the system to grow and flex to fit your needs. If it doesn’t deliver exactly what you need out of the box, customizing it is a common challenge among existing and previous customers.
It’s worth noting that Vonage does have some bundled international plans that could be valuable if you do a lot of international calling.
Plans start at $14.99 per line per month with 20 or more lines. It’s $17.99 per line for less than 20 lines and $19.99 per line if you have four lines or fewer.
For more on Vonage, check out our full review here.
Simple and Affordable VoIP Phone Systems for Basic Needs
Not everyone needs a full business communication suite–there are plenty of basic options.
We still recommend Nextiva if you can afford it. However, we wanted to give you the full picture so you can weigh all of your options.
While reviewing 1-VoIP, we found that it could make sense if you want to keep your existing IP phones or want to purchase additional hardware directly from them. It also works if you want pay-as-you-go pricing. Check out our full 1-VoIP review if you’re interested.
Phone.com offers HIPAA-compliant voice at the entry-level tier, which isn’t something you’ll find everywhere. Another standout of Phone.com is its ability to mix and match user types.
You can pay different rates based on what types of features each user needs. You can learn more about it in our complete Phone.com review.
But overall, these simple systems lack the features you get from Nextiva and similar players in this space. Integrations are limited, the interfaces are clunky, analytics are basically non-existent, and the internal communication tools are severely lacking.
If you just need a virtual phone number to add to your mobile phone (and basically nothing else), look into OpenPhone.
Check out our favorite virtual phone number providers to see more options.
VoIP Providers That Focus Heavily on International Calling
Aircall works well for obtaining local numbers when traveling internationally for business.
They also make it super easy for you to set customized business hours for different international numbers. This is crucial if your agents work in different time zones than the people they’re calling or taking calls from.
What’s unique about GoTo Connect is that even its entry-level plan supports international calling—including access to free calling in more than 50 countries.
8×8, on the other hand, is made for international call centers, with rates starting at $0.02 per minute. Its basic plan does not support global calls, but its middle tier supports unlimited calling in 14 countries and the top tier supports 48.
VoIP Phone Systems for Call Centers
Overall, Nextiva is an excellent option for call centers. It works nicely for even the busiest business departments that rely on calls to connect with customers, such as tech support and customer service centers.
The platform focuses on ensuring that customers receive a high level of service, while giving team members the ability to operate efficiently.
Dialpad works well if you want to weave the power of AI into how you run your call center. You’ll get smart routing features alongside clutch tools for analyzing the efficacy of calls.
Although it’s worth noting that Nextiva also has robust AI capabilities in its call center software, too.
11Sight is a bit unique. It’s built for inbound sales teams and incorporates video calls to streamline the sales process. You can simply place a link on your website, social media profiles, or anywhere online.
Visitors can then click that link to initiate a voice or video call with your team.
CallHippo is better for cranking out more calls, getting more sales, recovering debt, or getting more offers in front of more people. You can even use it to send out voice messages to multiple people in the form of a call.
Check out our top call center software recommendations to learn more.
What Matters When Reviewing VoIP Providers and Phone Services
Our research team spent weeks diving into different platforms, features, and use cases making sense of what truly matters and what’s just noise.
When putting this guide together, we found the following to matter most.
Inbound Call Handling
When a customer reaches out, they expect quick and straightforward connections with your team.
Features like IVR, multi-level auto attendants, ACD, and call flows are key.
Outbound Call Efficiency
Making outbound calls can take a lot out of your employees. Power, progressive, and auto dialers help boost efficiency and give your agents the tools they need.
While these aren’t as common in standard VoIP systems, they do come with many call center solutions and are an important consideration if outbound calling is a large part of what your business does.
Call Recording and Transcription
Recording and transcribing calls leads to better training, performance, and better customer experiences.
Some solutions let you automatically record every call and others allow it on demand. Either way, you should look closely at the amount of storage you get and whether or not you can record your own automated voice notifications.
Alternatively, you can use a separate call recording solution.
This is the biggest concern for most business owners and call center managers.
If the process to get started on a VoIP platform is complicated, it can drag things out and lead to a ton of unnecessary frustration. Every VoIP system we featured in this guide either has strong step-by-step instructions for DIY implementation or professional installation services.
VoIP systems are no longer just about phones. Most include many UCaaS features, like video calling, text messaging, faxing, and team chat so you get multiple communication tools in one.
The amount you have to pay for each of these features depends on the provider.
Keeping Your Number
Not every business wants to acquire a new or virtual number from their new VoIP phone service provider. Number porting should always be an option, though some providers make it easier or cheaper than others.
Every VoIP provider we recommend is reliable. Sure, some have SLAs and guaranteed uptime or quality standards. But any of them on this page will get the job done well.
On top of that, many quality and reliability issues stem from the end-user, not the provider.
You should always run a VoIP speed test to make sure your existing connection can support your new service provider. Taking steps to optimize your VoIP network will also help improve the quality of your calls on reliable systems.
We specifically chose VoIP providers with intuitive and self-explanatory user interfaces.
Some are more elegant and well designed than others, but none of them should take more than a few days to get used to.
If desk phones, conference bridges, and headsets are important to you, it’s crucial to make sure you understand whether or not your existing devices are compatible with the system you choose.
Aside from that, you can also look at the hardware sold directly by the provider. Going this route gives you the easiest implementation with plug-and-play set up.
Hot desking is also an important feature to consider—as it allows employees to use individual numbers or extensions at any work station.