Both Google Voice and Grasshopper are virtual telecommunications services that provide you with phone numbers that you can access on your mobile or landline phone. While these services offer somewhat similar features, understanding their differences can help you select the provider that is right for your needs.
Although Google Voice can be used for business calls, it is designed for personal use and lacks the support that would be required for mid-size or larger companies. In fact, Google warns against using the Voice service for business calls because of the service's lack of enterprise support. On the other hand, Grasshopper was designed specifically for the business market, targeting entrepreneurs and small- to mid-size organizations.
Comparison of Features
Because Grasshopper is designed for businesses, it offers a variety of professional features not found with Google Voice. With Grasshopper, you receive an unlimited number of call extensions, music on hold options, access to professional voiceover services, automated attendants, and the ability to secure both local and toll-free phone numbers. Features common to both services include conference calling, voicemail transcription, international calling and caller ID.
Although there are fees associated with porting a number to Google Voice and making international calls, Google Voice doesn’t have a monthly usage fee. From setting up a Google Voice number to making and receiving calls throughout the United States and Canada, there is no charge associated with using Google Voice. Grasshopper, however, costs a minimum of $12 a month, depending on the services you need; you must contact Grasshopper directly to obtain a quote.
Number porting -- the ability to transfer your current phone number to a different service provider -- is available with both Grasshopper and Google Voice. With Grasshopper, you can transfer an existing toll-free or local phone number to the service for a fee of $30 per carrier. Google Voice doesn’t offer toll-free numbers; the fee to transfer a number to Google Voice is $20.
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