CallHippo Review–The Good & Bad in 2024

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CallHippo is an affordable virtual phone system and contact center solution for businesses. We recommend it for smaller startups with one to five users on a super tight budget or if you want to incorporate WhatsApp messaging support into your company’s contact center. There’s even a free plan that can work for low-volume users. But CallHippo’s low prices translate to fewer features with base plans, and you may eventually outgrow the platform as your business scales. 

How Does CallHippo Compare to the Best Call Center Solutions?

CallHippo is a great option for really small contact centers using fewer than 1000 monthly minutes, but we typically don’t recommend it unless you plan to stay really small.

Nextiva‘s pricing and feature set are comparable, but the platform’s significantly more scalable. Plus, it’s more reliable, has a proven track record, and thousands of happy customers. You can start with its business phone plan and upgrade to a full contact center solution whenever you’re ready.

If you are small and use more than 1,000 monthly minutes OpenPhone‘s probably a better choice–plus, it delivers more call center functionality than CallHippo at a cheaper price point.

It does take a more collaborative approach to sales and service than other systems, but that can be a game changer for small teams.

For larger call centers with more than 100 agents, RingCentral offers more advanced functionality, but a tougher deployment and learning curve for both agents and administrators.

Check out our complete breakdown of the best call center software on the market to learn more about alternative options. 

CallHippo: The Good and The Bad

CallHippo shines above the crowd for its free and cheap phone plans, which work fine for low-volume startups. You’ll benefit from a fast setup, 24/7 support, and have the option to add on a text-based contact option for your customers.  

Just be aware most of CallHippo’s advanced features aren’t available until you reach the most expensive plan tiers, and the SMS limits included with base plans are lower than market alternatives. The platform isn’t really scalable, and you won’t be able to reach a CallHippo support agent over the phone. 

The Good

Functional free forever plan: CallHippo is one of the only business phone systems on the market with a free plan that you can actually use. Just pay for your phone number and onboard as many users as you want for free. The plan is pretty bare-bones, but it’s fine for startups that need to stretch a tight budget. If you need something right away and you’re ok with upgrading or switching providers later on, you can start with the free plan today without putting much thought into it. 

Budget-friendly for low volume call centers: You can get a call center solution from CallHippo for just $16 per user per month. To put that into perspective, other call center platforms on the market start around $50 to $65. It’s also worth noting that CallHippo’s contact center packages are actually slightly cheaper than its business phone system plans, which is almost never the case. This is a practical choice for any business that isn’t fielding a ton of inbound calls or dialing out at high volume. 

24/7 support: CallHippo offers 24/7 support via email and live chat on all of its office phone system plans, including the free one, and 24/7 chat support on all of the paid call center packages. Some alternatives out there only offer 24/5 support on plans that are more expensive. So it’s nice to know that you can reach CallHippo at any time—even though it’s a budget-friendly option. 

Ability to provide text-based support: You can use CallHippo to set up a text-based contact center via WhatsApp. While this isn’t included with any of the business phone packages, you can add it to any plan. It works for both inbound and outbound use cases, and you can integrate this messaging option across all of your online channels. 

Fast and simple setup: One major benefit of having a basic phone system is headache-free deployment. You can sign up and start using CallHippo in less than five or ten minutes. It doesn’t require any hardware aside from your existing smartphones or computers, and there’s nothing too fancy to configure on the backend as an admin. To get a taste of its simplicity, you can try CallHippo free for ten days

The Bad

Need to upgrade for advanced features: The tradeoff of being such an affordable option is that the features are limited. Things like call recording, interactive voice response (IVR), call queues, and advanced call center dialers are only available at either the mid or top-tier plans. Even the reporting is pretty basic, and you won’t be able to track your most important call center analytics until you upgrade. 

Limited SMS messaging: While CallHippo is a solid add-on for WhatsApp messaging, you only get 100 SMS messages at the entry-level phone system tier. This jumps to 500 at the mid-tier and 1,000 at the highest level. But you can get 2,000 included messages from Nextiva with a plan that’s actually cheaper than CallHippo. Overall, these SMS inclusions are low compared to what’s offered elsewhere on the market. 

No phone support: Unfortunately, phone support is non-existent with CallHippo. So you’ll need to rely on a live chat, email, and their knowledge base to resolve any issues. This all circles back to CallHippo being a budget provider—corners end up being cut somewhere. 

Not built to scale: CallHippo is fine for small teams that are just getting started. But its lack of certain advanced features mean you’ll eventually outgrow it. The entry-level phone system plan only supports five users, and even the most expensive plan only supports 50 users. From there, you’ll be forced to upgrade to a call center package. 

CallHippo’s Noteworthy Features

Predictive Dialer

CallHippo has a robust predictive dialer that boosts productivity for outbound sales reps. It automatically screens numbers that are busy and go straight to voicemail—ensuring your team connects with more live leads instead of wasting time dialing numbers that don’t answer. 

Predictive Dialer. Unleash the power of automation and precision with CallHippo's Predictive Dialer Software. Say goodbye to manual dialing and hello to a seamless, data-driven calling experience that maximizes agent productivity and ensures every connection counts.

CallHippo’s predictive dialer also supports time zone dialing to make sure that calls are only made during hours when the recipient is likely to answer, even if the contact center rep is located in a different part of the globe. This isn’t something you’ll get from every outbound dialing tool on the market. 

This is one of CallHippo’s best features, but it’s only available on select plans. It can also be purchased on its own for a hefty fee. We don’t recommend that because it’s cheaper to get it bundled in your call center package. 

Auto Rotate

To avoid getting your number marked as spam, CallHippo has an auto-rotate feature that automatically changes your phone number for each call. This is important for outbound sales reps who are constantly cold-calling lists. 

The tool dynamically assigns rotating numbers to different agents and calls in a way that doesn’t affect your team’s workflow while reducing call abandonment rates. It also helps establish more trust and reliability for businesses that could otherwise have their numbers marked as spam. 

WhatsApp Business API

To be clear, this feature is not included with any of CallHippo’s business phone system or contact center plans. But it’s one of the platform’s most unique and popular features, so we definitely want to cover it for those who may be interested in purchasing it separately. 

WhatsApp Business API. Engage customers on the world's leading messaging platform. Integrate rich messaging capabilities into your contact center via WhatsApp for Business API.

Simply put, this feature lets you provide both inbound support and outbound communication through WhatsApp. It’s a quick way to resolve customer problems or answer questions using a tool they’re already familiar with. This is especially useful if you have lots of customers located internationally—where WhatsApp is more popular and phone calls are more expensive (for your business and for your customers). 

You can even integrate your CRM to further personalize the customer experience. The feature also supports automated message triggers based on customer behavior and lets you configure auto-reply messages for common questions or during times when agents are unavailable. 

Call Queueing System

CallHippo’s call queue system automatically puts incoming calls into a virtual list and tells callers their estimated wait time. This is much more effective than just placing customers on hold without giving them any expectation of when their call will be answered.

You can even set up the system to prioritize calls from loyal customers based on your conversation history. So your best customers or calls that translate to dollars won’t be put at the back of the line. 

Sticky Agent

CallHippo’s sticky agent automatically connects callers to the same agent they’ve spoken to in the past. This works great for inbound customer support, as it improves the customer experience while simultaneously helping to resolve issues faster.

Sticky Agent. Connect customers to the same agent automatically. Eliminate wasted time re-explaining issues and increase loyalty while reducing lead mismanagement.

When a customer connects with an agent they’ve already spoken to, it drastically cuts down on the amount of time required to re-explain the problem or scenario. The feature also works really well for sales scenarios, as it ensures leads are always sent to the appropriate sales rep. Both parties benefit from continuity and it helps agents build rapport with callers. 

This feature is only available on select call center packages.

Call Barging

Lots of call center solutions give managers the ability to listen in on live calls, which is something that’s also offered by CallHippo. Some even let those managers whisper in the agent’s ear to provide advice, support, and answer questions. CallHippo offers this too.

But call barging isn’t something you’ll find everywhere. This allows managers to barge in and actually take over a call. 

It’s an easy and effective way to minimize escalations that would otherwise require long hold times or callbacks. This also helps build trust with customers and improve satisfaction rates knowing that they’re able to quickly speak to someone who’s capable and qualified to resolve their problems. 

CallHippo Pricing, Plans, and Add-Ons

There are two main CallHippo products—the office phone system and the call center solution. All of CallHippo’s plans are prices are billed per user per month, with discounts offered for annual billing.

The office phone system works for businesses that are just getting started, but it’s not intended for high-volume calling. The call center packages are actually cheaper than the office phone system, and these are built for customer support and sales teams that need to handle lots of inbound or outbound calls

Both of these options come with a free forever Basic plan, which is suitable for simple needs and small teams. 

CallHippo Office Phone System

  • Starter — Starts at $18 per user per month
  • Professional — Starts at $30 per user per month
  • Ultimate — Starts at $42 per user per month

CallHippo Call Center

  • Bronze — Starts at $16 per user per month
  • Silver — Starts at $24 per user per month
  • Platinum — Starts at $40 per user per month

CallHippo’s predictive dialer software can be purchased separately for $125 per user per month. But we don’t recommend this to anyone. The predictive dialer is included in the Platinum call center plan, for less than one-third of the cost compared to buying it as a standalone tool. For high-volume outbound contact centers, this plan comes with all of CallHippo’s most advanced features. 

WhatsApp business messaging plans are priced separately, and they start at $15 per user per month. This is a solid option to consider if you want to provide messaging support to global customers across all of your digital channels. 

Other optional add-ons offered by CallHippo include:

  • Recorded call transcriptions — $15 per user per month
  • Voicemail transcription — $1.50 per user per month
  • Custom caller ID — $12 per number per month
  • Call tracking insights — $25 per account per month
  • CNAM — $100 one-time setup fee
  • Website call button – $10 per month
  • SMS services — $15 per month
  • User dashboard — $15 per user per month

You can skip these if you’re on a tight budget. 

Is CallHippo Right for You?

CallHippo is a solid option if you need a cheap or free business phone system for a small team. If you just need basic calling capabilities and don’t need advanced features, the entry-level plans are some of the cheapest on the market offered by a reliable provider. 

For businesses with customers located worldwide, CallHippo can help you provide omnichannel support via WhatsApp through your contact center. This is more cost-effective than paying for international calls, and it provides your customers with a quick and easy way to get help. 

Large businesses or high-volume contact centers should probably look elsewhere. You’ll need to sign up for one of CallHippo’s most expensive plans to get its most advanced features, but other platforms on the market offer a better value at those price points. 

CallHippo also doesn’t work as a complete business communications system. There’s no team messaging, internet fax, or video calling, and conference calling is only available at the highest tier. So if you want all of these things under the same roof, you’ll need to look elsewhere. 

Get started with CallHippo here to learn more or check out our full list of the best call center software to see alternatives

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