Magic Jack Vs. Ooma Telo

 The Magic Jack is cheaper, but is the Ooma Telo a better buy?
Ooma Telo
4 stars
Pretty Cool
Magic Jack
3.5 stars
Pretty Cool
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  • Magic Jack:
  • Lower initial costs
  • Higher annual cost
  • Portable
  • Requires a powered-on computer
  • Advanced features included at no additional cost
  • Requires computer for voicemail access
  • Does not provide number porting
  • Ooma Telo
  • Higher initial investment
  • Lower annual cost
  • Not portable
  • Works without a computer
  • Advanced features require paid Ooma Premier subscription
  • Built-in answering machine
  • Number porting available

The Bottom Line:
There is no clearly better device. They both have their own unique advantages and disadvantages. For a more portable and much cheaper device, we suggest the Magic Jack. For a more permanent device, number porting, or the ability to use the phone without leaving your computer on, we suggest the Ooma Telo.

 
Let us know what's in that head of yours




WHY DOES MY OOMA DROP CALLS AND GOES DEAD ALLL THE TIME ? I HAVE ATT UVERSE WHICH BLAMES IT ON OOMA AND VICE VERSA OOMA BLAMES IT ON ATT/UVERSE?   

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by: anonymous coward
3/3/2013 9:47:25 AM
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Get a google #. Its free and does all of the above   

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by: anonymous coward
12/20/2012 4:09:33 AM
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New Magic Jack doesn't need a computer, and you can port your number.   

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by: anonymous coward
8/29/2012 11:51:00 PM
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Love the Ooma. Voicemail, call forwarding, wireless, 2 phone numbers, and Bluetooth. Taxes and fees are less than $4month.   

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by: anonymous coward
7/25/2012 9:10:59 PM
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I purchased the MagicJack, it worked as promised. The problem was a voice latency issue, I could hear the other landline person just fine, but they had a hard time hearing me. Some calls were okay, but most people got frustrated with trying to hear/understand me. So, I reverted back to my landline and gave away the Magicjack. The voice quality left a lot to be desired, I am curious if other have experienced this problem and if the Ooma has better voice quality on both ends of the conversation/line.   

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by: anonymous coward
3/30/2012 11:15:42 AM
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Update your video. Magic Jack does now support porting your phone number and you can get hardware that doesnt require a PC.   

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by: anonymous coward
3/28/2012 4:56:09 PM
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Magic Jack Plus (2012) does not require your computer to be plugged in. $89 a year OR $99 for 5 YEARS makes Magic Jack a better deal.

Magic Jack does NOT call Alaska. (I am not sure what limitations Oma calls are since I do not have it) They lost their Alaska contract or whatever about 2 years ago - Alaska wanted more money - MJ turned them down rather than raise rates for all consumers.

Oma charges TAXES every month for every call. Nothing is charged for making call on Magic Jack. MJ has no monthly fees.

I've had Magic Jack for 4 years and annual renewal up this month and after reviewing Oma and MJ - I am paying $99 for the (turn your computer off and it it still works) Magjic Jack PLUS up grade.





  

Terry owns this product

by: Terry
3/21/2012 6:33:45 PM
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The Telo does have smartphone apps that give it the portability you get with the Magicjack. You pay 10 bucks for the app and the service to use it is 5 bucks a month, but if you have a smartphone, you don't have to unplug and pack hardware to use the service on the road.

My Magicjack's call quality isn't stellar, so what I'd really like to hear about is the call quality of the Telo.
  

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by: Beth Whitmire
1/22/2012 12:31:18 AM
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I would like to see this review updated to compare telo to magicjack PLUS. There are less differences now between the two because of MJ's upgrade, which allow you to keep your number and use it without a computer. But there are also more costs w MJ such as porting a number and increased yearly fees.   

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by: anonymous coward
12/22/2011 1:35:22 PM
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The new Magic Jack PLUS does not require a computer to operate. It can plug directly into your router!

  

Don JS owns this product

by: Don JS
12/16/2011 5:16:12 PM
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I didn't think you were supposed to plug it directly into the router? I thought that was what that adapter was for (USB to power plug adapter that you plug the MagicJack into and then plug it into an Electrical outlet?)


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by: anonymous coward
1/21/2012 10:26:17 AM
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Magic Now have the device which does not require your computer to turn on...The cost is only 29.95/year. ooma cost most more on yearly average.   

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by: anonymous coward
12/9/2011 12:21:25 AM
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There is one major difference between the two that really doesnt get mentioned.
With the Ooma you get 911 service in that the address is listed like a land line while you don't get that benefit with Magic Jack.   

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by: anonymous coward
10/7/2011 12:53:37 PM
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It's also unfair to compare the pricing in that the $12 year fees are really for the 911 service and taxes


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by: anonymous coward
10/7/2011 12:56:56 PM
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i think you are wrong on this. at the bottom of the screen on mj, there is a place where you can add you address for emergency calls


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by: anonymous coward
5/6/2012 6:03:49 PM
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my magic jack connection typically skips, like an echo or stutter. This is aftter spending hours with tech support. this happens if i am using my computer at the same time as talking on the phone. even if i just move my mouse, this occurs   

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by: anonymous coward
7/1/2011 11:26:59 PM
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Re: Ooma
In your video comparison you didn't include Customer Service. There IS a difference between these two companies. Ooma
customer service is much easier to contact and you actually get to talk with a live person over the phone.   

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by: anonymous coward
9/9/2010 5:42:30 PM
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I watched your video comparison of the Ooma Telo to the Magic Jack. I think it is an oversimplified and flawed review of these products. While there is a market for both of these devices, the Ooma Telo offers so much more versatility compared to the Magic Jack. True road warriors will most certainly carry cell phones, even if these are el cheapo pay as you go phones like you can get at any big discount merchant (e.g. a Tracfone). The Ooma Premier service (for $9.99 per month) gives you features like call forward to cell, call forward when busy, 3 way calling, voice mail (accessible from home or on the road or via the internet), call screening, call block (for those ubiquitous telemarketers and prank calls), as well as a SECOND phone line. You also get the ability to screen your calls or send ALL calls to voice mail with a "do not disturb" button. Magic Jack, while useful, cannot forward a call to your cell phone if your main phone is busy. If you are a true "road warrior", you probably already have a cell phone (or should have if you don't). So what I'm trying to say here, is that your analysis is like comparing a Chevette to a Mercedes Benz. There is so much more versatility with the Ooma Telo. Also, I'm not quite sure where you get your ratings for these two products. Personally, when I'm comparing products, I like to use Amazon.com or some other BIG internet retailer to see what buyers think. On Amazon, the Magic Jack gets slightly less than three stars. The Ooma Telo get 4 stars...and the Ooma core system (like I have) gets about 4 and 1/2 stars. The main reason, I think is quite clear. Magic Jack simply cannot give the level of service that Ooma gives. Magic Jack only charges $1.67 a month. How much technical support will that allow? Not very much. Many who commented on the Magic Jack (on Amazon.com) clearly stated that the support was lacking, and a significant portion also experienced problems with call quality. As far as portability goes, I use a Tracfone for my "emergency" type calls, and I can forward any of my calls from the Ooma device to any number I choose....anytime I choose. I'd say, that is a lot better than having to carrry a laptop everywhere...not to mention having to have your computer turned on. How are you supposed to do that in your car? Answer....your not! Anybody wishing to compare the features of these two devices should go to their respective websites and compare what you really get for your $$. My Ooma core system and hub has more than paid for the $180 I paid for it. You do the math. $180 divided by your monthly land line telephone bill. After that, all calls withing the U.S. are free. You are not obligated to buy the Ooma Premier service....but many will want this when they see what they get for $9.99 per month....with no contractual commitments. You get a 3 month free trial of this service with the purchase of any Ooma system. The Ooma Premier service really sells itself, in my opinion. If you're a real warrior, like the men and women in the U.S. armed services in Afghanistan or Iraq, the Magic Jack is the only practical option. In this case, all outgoing calls to the U.S. will be free as long as the user has access to a computer with (USB support) and high speed internet access.   

Thomas W - Michigan owns this product

by: Thomas W - Michigan
8/15/2010 11:06:12 AM
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you do not know shit about features you have with ooma!


anonymous coward does not own this product
by: anonymous coward
7/26/2011 12:29:32 PM
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man, you are a bitch, yo!


anonymous coward owns this product
by: anonymous coward
9/7/2011 11:08:39 PM
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"Real warriors" in Iraq and Afghanistan use Skype. Free VIDEO calling to any computer in the world and unlimited calling to all of North America for $2/month. There is also Skype for smart phones.


Don McDonald does not own this product
by: Don McDonald
9/20/2011 6:29:44 PM
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I bought a Magic Jack over a year ago and used it about four times. Pros... portability, built in messages in the form of e-mails, and low initial cost. Cons... very poor support. I upgraded my computer to Windows 7 and it dropped my Magic Jack and I could not get it back. I used the on-line support and they helped me upgrade the Magic Jack to Windows 7 and when they left it still didn't work. Another thing that I think is improtant is pack up your computer to travel and include your Magic Jack now find a small phone to take with you so you can use the Magic Jack (they don't make a small portable phone like the size of a cell phone) so you better get a large computer case if you are going to travel with a Magic Jack as you can't take a motel phone off the wall to use as they are wired in to a permanent wall plug. Just a insight I wanted to share.

Fred   

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by: anonymous coward
8/13/2010 2:19:41 PM
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still getting billed too huh?


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by: anonymous coward
10/5/2012 7:35:15 PM
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I am currently using Magic Jack. I am increasingly becoming unsatisfied, because of technical problems with the system. I can't dial out on attached phones, but can receive calls on them. I cannot call certain numbers within an area code either. I am told by Magic Jack assistants that they are "working on the problem." It has been at least 4 weeks now and it still isn't fixed. Needless to say, I am looking to replace it. Bill Huffman   

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by: Bill Huffman
8/12/2010 4:13:38 PM
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I tried Magic Jack, but found that it is not compatible with my Mac computer. I bought Ooma and it's already paid for itself. I dumped my landline. You might have also mentioned that the Ooma can fax.   

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by: anonymous coward
8/12/2010 11:59:42 AM
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Can I pick up one of my phones that I have in multiple rooms?   

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by: anonymous coward
7/31/2010 12:50:57 PM
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I know with the Ooma you can. it can be complicated to set up though.


Infomercial Junkie does not own this product
by: Infomercial Junkie  
9/13/2010 4:21:45 PM
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You can buy an expandable cordless phone system. Only the base needs to be connected to the Ooma/Magic Jack. Yes, I am a coward, and no, I do not own the product...yet!


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by: anonymous coward
6/23/2012 5:25:31 PM
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good review . seemed very fair an honest. I use Magic Jack as I am a road warrior. I think I'll replavce my home phone with ooma.   

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by: anonymous coward
7/25/2010 3:26:40 PM
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Ooma is a superior product--an actual phone service. Magic Jack is annoying and inferior. Ooma offers online and phone support. Magic Jack is almost non-existent as a supported product.

  

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by: anonymous coward
7/9/2010 11:06:18 AM
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I had magic jack when it first came out a number of years ago. I was a piece of garbage i would have been better using two tin cans and a string. A couple years went by and i bought the device again and hope it would have better clarity and no echoing. The device was a notch better than before but really a poor replacement for a conventional phone with high voice quality and reliability. I would never buy the product again. The Ooma from what i have research was rated higher than Vonage and with out the computer staying on all day. Now this is more like a real phone that i was looking for. I don't know where this guy got all these nice adjectives from with the majic jack but the only thing i can figure he must own stock in the company. Stay away from magic jack PS: i don't know where they get the
there is no Magic in that jack just a cheap substitute for a real phone. Dan Anderson N. Tonawanda NY 14120   

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by: Daniel Anderson
6/28/2010 8:18:54 PM
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For what you paid, MagicJack is a good buy, some times it had problem but what do you expect for the price you paid. If you have more money, then get the Ooma, it has more features than Magicjack but pay more initially. If you have patient and do not want to pay a lot then Magicjack will be fine, if you do not want to keep your computer on all the time and restart the computer quite often then go w/ Ooma


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by: anonymous coward
10/30/2011 1:44:02 PM
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Amazon MJ vs. Ooma!

Look at the Ooma page on Amazon. It says:
Switch from magicJack(tm) to Ooma Telo Through May 22, 2010, get a $40 Amazon.com Gift Card from Ooma when you trade-in your old magicJack(tm). Restrictions apply. See details.   

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by: MattH
5/13/2010 5:53:09 PM
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Fax Machine

How do these products work with fax machines   

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by: Wondering
5/4/2010 11:17:45 AM
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I think with mixed results...

Officially, the Magic Jack does not work with fax machines... but they do say in their FAQ that you can try turning off error correction and setting the fax machine to the slowest speed and testing until you find a speed that works. Some people are able to get it to work. Some aren't. I know some people have luck with a DSL filter.

With the Ooma, some people say that typing *99 first helps. You can check out the following thread on the Ooma and fax machines.

http://www.ooma.com/forums/viewtopic.php?f=6&t=114

Also - with the Ooma - you can keep a cheap phone line and use it side-by-side with the Ooma in case your fax machine wont work with the Ooma directly. I guess you could do the same for the magic jack.

Good luck! And don't forget to come back and leave a review if you can / can't get it working!


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by: Infomercial Junkie  
5/4/2010 4:39:01 PM
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For those of us who are still unsure

This is an interesting comparison- especially given the premise that the two devices are quite different.For anyone that's still unsure of which device to get- I suggest you visit the individual pages of the magic jack and the ooma- there are a lot of comments and review there that I found very helpful. Personally, I think the low-risk investment of the magic jack is a better fit for me. Anyone out there who has had experience with both devices? Do you have any insight to add to the video's conclusions?   

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by: C R   
4/29/2010 5:14:17 PM
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I have two Magicjack plus, one in my vacation home in Florida, one in my NJ house as second home line. Both work very well, sound is very clear, I use it with my iMac and iPad, can call any number through it using MagicJack app(free), You can dial 911 after you register your address in your account. I feel it is an revolutionary piece of gadget which will replace our telephone service, and it's so cheap in comparison with landline. Buy it, you will be very happy. Also, when I travel outside USA, I can use it to call any USA numbers for free, amazing, Iam going to leave one MagicJack for my best friend, so he can use it to call USA friends.

Bill.


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by: anonymous coward
1/11/2012 10:26:29 PM
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Editrial Review

Reviewed by: Mordy Gilden
Reviewed on: 1/18/2010 10:59:52 AM


What They Claim: Both the Magic Jack and Ooma Telo stormed the market with claims save you money by providing no-monthly-cost phone service. These products are both similar, in that they use VOIP technology to replace your standard, costly landline. However, there are a number of differences that are relevant to those loking into buying one of these systems.

What We Found: As sound quality on both devices is comparable, we focused our attention the differences between these products.

The Magic Jack is a small, portable USB device that plugs directly into your computer. Your standard telephone can then be plugged into the small USB device to power your phone. Though this results in ease and portability, it does mean that you will need to keep your computer powered on for your phone to work. Furthermore, when you place a call or receive a call, there is an annoying popup with advertising space that appears on your screen. These inconveniences may be tolerable to someone who needs the portability of the Magic Jack (such as someone who travels frequently or needs to use the phone over a wireless internet connection.) The Ooma Telo, on the other hand, is a dedicated device. You plug your network cable and phone directly into the Ooma Telo, and viola - service. The obvious benefit here is that you do not need to keep your computer on for the Ooma Telo to function.

There are differences in the services offered by each of these phones. Both Magic Jack and Ooma offer the ability to receive your voicemails as MP3 email attachments. The Ooma does have one advantage when it comes to voicemail - it has a built in answering machine on the box, so you will not need to use your computer to access your voicemail. Unfortunately, some of the advanced features of the Ooma (such as remote access to voicemail) are not included in basic service. These features require a paid subscription to Ooma Premier, whereas with the Magic Jack, some of these features are included. It must be noted that the Magic Jack does not offer all of the same features as the Ooma - most notably (we thought) - the ability to port your old number. With the Magic Jack, this is not possible at all. The Ooma Telo allows porting your old number for a one-time-fee.

Perhaps the most notable difference between these two devices is the price. The Ooma Telo charges an initial $200-$300 for the device, and $11.75 annually in taxes and fees. The Magic Jack has an initial $40 price tag and $20 yearly fee. Though the Magic Jack yearly fee is higher, it would take a significant amount of time for the amount you've invested in Magic Jack to exceed the amount you would have spent on the Ooma Telo. After 10 years, the total investment in the Ooma id $417.50 and the cost of the Magic Jack is $240. After 35 years, the total cost paid for the Ooma will reach $711.25 while the Magic Jack will reach $740. That's a long time before you end up saving money on the Ooma.

The Bottom Line: It's difficult to pick a clear winner. Each device has its own benefits and disadvantages. If you are seeking low initial investment and portability, we would have to say go with the Magic Jack. If you prefer a dedicated phone line without needing to keep your computer powered on, the Ooma Telo might be a better choice. Just remember to check the features of the Ooma Telo before you buy. As some of the features will require the paid Ooma Premier service, make sure that you are either willing to pay or that you can do without the special features. It is also important to note that if you must port your old number, only the Ooma Telo will allow it.

There is more to say about each of these devices, but we're out of space. For more detailed information about each device, check out our reviews of the Magic Jack and Ooma Telo.



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