The Lighter Side Of The Cloud – Day 5
The Lighter Side Of The Cloud – Education
The Lighter Side Of The Cloud – Mobility
The Lighter Side Of The Cloud – Troglodytes
The Lighter Side Of The Cloud – Holiday Photos
Cloud-Based VOIP – 4 Alternatives To Skype

Cloud-Based VOIP – 4 Alternatives To Skype

Cloud-Based VOIP – 4 Alternatives To Skype

Skype is the most popular cloud-based VOIP service. Since being bought out by Microsoft for $8.5 billion in 2011 the company has grown to more than 300 million users and now accounts for 34% of all international calls. Some people don’t want to use Skype though. Reports of poor customer service, in-call interference, or even a general dislike for anything touched by Microsoft all contribute to some potential users staying away.

What alternatives do these users have available to them? CloudTweaks offers four Skype replacements…

Grasshopper

Grasshopper styles itself as a more business-orientated solution than Skype. The service provides many of the features found in expensive office ‘Private Branch Exchange’ systems for a fraction of the cost. Features include support for multiple users (each with their own extension), individual greetings, voicemail, web access and notifications by email or text message, as well as the ability to have local or toll-free numbers for people to call you on.

The service is more expensive than the comparative Google and Microsoft services thanks to the advanced features available. The cheapest plan is $12 per month, though the most popular plan is $49 per month for 2,000 minutes. The most expensive plan is $199 per month for 10,000 minutes.

Google Hangouts

Google Hangouts is the most obvious replacement for Skype. While some users might baulk at using Google products in the same way that some hesitate to use Microsoft or Apple devices, this service is unquestionably the most widely used and full-featured. Google Hangouts launched in mid-2013 as a result of the homogenisation of several independent Google products such as Google Talk, Google Plus Hangouts, and Google Plus Messenger.

The software can replace most features of Skype. While it won’t allow you to directly call landline telephones until it merges with Google Voice later this year, both video conferencing and document collaboration are both supported.

ooVoo

ooVoo is messaging and voice/video calling service that features instant messaging, text chat, video calls, and twelve-way video conferencing. A unique aspect of the program is its ability to make calls directly from your web browser to other PCs without the need for software to be installed.

The service’s file and screen sharing works well and is great for collaborative work and online meetings. Purchasing premium credits allows you to call landline numbers in over seventy countries at reasonable rates, as well as connect landline callers to conference calls. Unfortunately, of all Skype’s competitors, ooVoo has the most expensive PC-to-phone calls.

Before installing the desktop software you need to be aware that the free version is ad-supported. It will also try and install the ‘Ask Toolbar’ when you run the installer – be vigilante when clicking through the installation options.

Tango

This California-based start-up was launched in September 2009 by Uri Raz and Eric Setton – both of whom remain at the company as CEO and CTO respectively. The service already boasts 200 million users worldwideTango is a free app that, in addition to video calls, is also optimised for voice calls, texting, sharing, and playing games. It is mainly aimed at the mobile market, with most of its users using the Android or iOS client to access the service, though there is also a PC client available.

Critics of the service say video quality is sometimes uneven, and there are occasional delays and poor voice-syncing in video calls.

Your Opinion?

Do you like Skype? Have you found a suitable alternative? Let us know in the comments below.

By Daniel Price

Daniel Price
Follow Me!

Daniel Price

Daniel is a Manchester-born UK native who has abandoned cold and wet Northern Europe and currently lives on the Caribbean coast of Mexico. A former Financial Consultant, he now balances his time between writing articles for several industry-leading tech (CloudTweaks.com & MakeUseOf.com), sports, and travel sites and looking after his three dogs.
Daniel Price
Follow Me!

One Response to Cloud-Based VOIP – 4 Alternatives To Skype

  1. Hi Daneil,

    I’ve used Nextiva for 8 months, I must say I’m quite happy with it so far. What I like most is that I pay less than a third than I did before, for a much better service. I liked how, when I just signed up, the folks at Nextiva reached out to offer me assistance and showed me how to use the different features.

    Apart from that, I have not had any issues, or dropped calls or anything like that. My business is running smoothly and uninterrupted and I’m saving costs on my overheads. The sound quality is fantastic and setup was quick and pain free. I’m definitely going to stick with Nextiva for a long time to come.

Recent

Mobile Connectivity Rises – 24 Billion Networked Devices By 2019

Mobile Connectivity Rises – 24 Billion Networked Devices By 2019

Mobile Connectivity Rises Mobile Technologies such as BYOD, Wearable Technology and Internet of Things are the cornerstone to strong cloud computing adoption and will continue to be the case as the number of connected devices continue to climb. In May 2015, Cisco released the complete VNI Global IP Traffic Forecast, 2014 – 2019. Global highlights…

9 Pitfalls of Providing Cloud-Based Online Government Services

9 Pitfalls of Providing Cloud-Based Online Government Services

Cloud-Based Online Government Services Pitfalls When the US government designed the Affordable Care Act, a key part of the program was to encourage enrollment through the Healthcare.gov website. This online service was supposed to make it easier for citizens to learn about the ACA, compare their health insurance options, and take full advantage of this…

IOT, Intelligent Sensors, And The Change That Is Coming…

IOT, Intelligent Sensors, And The Change That Is Coming…

Intelligent Sensors And The Future What is or isn’t connected: In the end, that is the internet of things. They, the things, represent stuff that has been around for the past 30 years. It was only recently that we have developed a way to consistently connect those devices. Despite the increasing awareness of IoT, it…

Popular Archives

Cloud Infographic – The Future (IoT)

Cloud Infographic – The Future (IoT)

The Future (IoT) By the year 2020, it is being predicted that 40 to 80 billion connected devices will be in use. The Internet of Things or IoT will transform your business and home in many truly unbelievable ways. The types of products and services that we can expect to see in the next decade…

The Cloud In 2015: Eight Trends To Look For

The Cloud In 2015: Eight Trends To Look For

The Cloud In 2015 For organizations of all sizes, in 2014 the cloud emerged as a critical part of the default consideration set when implementing any new application – in large part due to the cloud’s proven ability to handle data storage and processing demands in an elastic manner, improved verifiable standards around data security and…

Sponsors

The Many Hats Of Today’s IT Managers

The Many Hats Of Today’s IT Managers

The Many Hats of IT Managers In years past, the IT department of most large organizations was much like a version of Middle Earth: a mysterious nether world where people who seemed infinitely smarter than the rest of us bustled around, speaking and typing languages that appeared indecipherable, yet, which made our world work. They…

Selling Your Business To Your Employees

Selling Your Business To Your Employees

Mobility For Your Employees It may seem a radical notion, the idea of selling your business to the people who work for you, but this is the era in which we now work. Employees of all levels are all incredibly aware of their options when it comes to mobility and employability. This doesn’t mean that…

Established in 2009

CloudTweaks is recognized as one of the leading influencers in cloud computing, big data and internet of things (IoT) information. Our goal is to continue to build our growing information portal, by providing the best in-depth articles, interviews, event listings, whitepapers, infographics and much more.

CloudTweaks Comic Library

Advertising