Operated and owned by j2 Global Communications, Onebox aims to provide big businesses, small businesses, and individuals with professional level business solutions, including live receptionist options. While pricey in comparison to other providers, their no contract plans come with a 30-day money back guarantee. Their high monthly rates put them out of range for many small business owners, making Onebox better suited for more established businesses.Virtual phone system provider with multiple service levels for businesses needing comprehensive features or live receptionist services.
- International Numbers
- No Contract
- Live Receptionist Option
- 24/7 Customer Support
- Costly Add-ons
- No Unlimited Plans
- Features Missing From Executive Plan
- Few Lines Included
- Numerous Customer Complaints
- Limited Advanced Features
Pricing/Minutes/Contract: (Rating: 3/10)
Onebox separates its pricing plans across three service groupings: Onebox Receptionist, Onebox Executive, and Onebox LIVE Receptionist. All Onebox Receptionist and Executive plans offer a 30-day money back guarantee.
There are no long-term contracts, no set up fees, and no fees for cancellation. It is important to note, however, that the 30-day money back guarantee is for 30 days or until 100 minutes (Executive) or 1000 minutes (Receptionist) are met, whichever comes first. Once either limit is reached, there are no refunds.
Onebox Receptionist is aimed at businesses with 2-20 employees and offers four plan options, while Onebox Executive is meant to serve as full-service virtual office assistant to meet the communications needs of a single person, such as entrepreneurs, small business owners, and executives to route calls to their cell phones or other destinations. It offers three different plans to choose from.
Onebox LIVE Receptionist only offers two pricing options and offers no money back guarantee. This plan is strictly for those needing a live receptionist (as opposed to auto attendant services featured elsewhere), and is expensive with service starting at $129.95, and some users report costly hidden fees despite the site stating otherwise.
Overall, Onebox does offer a large variety of plans to choose from, but their random placement of features and high prices could be a serious turnoff for a lot of companies – big and small.
Call Management: (Rating: 7/10)
Several call management features exist across all plans, such as call screening, call forwarding, call hold, call routing, virtual extensions and call recording. An online account management interface makes it easy to view and manage messages, settings, and activity.
Onebox also offers a mobile app that is available on both iOS and Android platforms, as well as Blackberry. Like many, Onebox does not offer a mobile app for Windows phones.
Available Numbers: (Rating: 4/10)
Onebox offers vanity numbers, toll free numbers, local numbers, fax and virtual numbers. International numbers are available for $29.95 a month (plus standard usage rates). Users can also choose to import existing numbers at no cost. With each plan, only one toll free or local number is included. This can be a downside for businesses, especially when you consider the high cost of Onebox’s service and the fact that there are other services out there with multiple lines/numbers (including multiple toll-free numbers) for much less.
The amount of virtual extensions is determined by plan, but additional extensions can be added for $5.95 per month per line. Also, with all Onebox Receptionist plans, DID numbers are assigned to extensions.
It is important to note, however, that some users have reported it difficult or near impossible to take a number with them after canceling service with Onebox – including numbers they originally ported to their new Onebox account.
Advanced Features: (Rating: 4/10)
Both Onebox Receptionist and Onebox Executive offer several advanced features, such as text messages, click to call from web, voicemail to email, video conferencing, mobile apps, and professional greeting setup, and fax services. It is important to note that these features are “advanced” to Onebox, but often are standard (and free) with other companies.
Auto attendant, call tree, call queuing, DID numbers, and extensions are only available on Onebox Receptionist, and even then only on top-tier price plans. Some advanced features, such as call recording, are available, but at an additional monthly price (per line).
Usability/Ease of Use: (Rating: 3/10)
The ability to view and manage your system online as well as the ability to use existing phones, makes Onebox easy to use with little to no learning curve. That being said, if you are new to virtual phone systems or even online dashboards, the limited support and very basic appearance of the dashboard may make it difficult to use. There are also a lot of bugs that have been reported with their interface and some users report kinks in the execution of services, such as call routing.
No online documentation is available apart from an FAQ in the event that users do run into a problem – making Onebox extremely un-friendly for new users.
Help & Support: (Rating: 2/10)
Help and support is grouped by level of importance, as opposed to price plan or service level. 24/7 customer service is available, but restricted to phone and email. There are no online resources, groups, or forums for help or support and users report slow response time. The customer service at Onebox is particular poor. They have multiple complaints from past and current customers, they are extremely unwilling to assist new customers with questions and their uptimes are some of the worse in the virtual phone system industry. Considering the amount you pay per month, you would expect better customer service – and you can find such with companies that charge much less.
Onebox Pricing and Plans
Extensions can be added to each plan as needed, with cost per month noted in plan descriptions. International numbers are also available for $24.95 per month. Fax minutes are used as part of plan’s total minutes.
Voicemail to email, fax to email, account administration, greetings, find me/follow me, click to call, call screening, call routing, hold music, call transfer, call recording, web conferencing, professional greeting, text messaging, auto attendant, dial by name, call tree, call queuing and direct dial are all available on these plans, though some are only available at an additional monthly cost.
2000 Plan: 2000 minutes, 4 extensions, extra extensions $11.95 with extra 100 minutes, additional minutes 4.9¢ per minute. Starting at $49.95 per month.
3000 Plan: 3000 minutes, 10 extensions, extra extensions $9.95 per with extra 100 minutes, additional minutes 3.9¢ per minute. Starting at $79.95 per month.
4000 Plan: 4000 minutes, 15 extensions, extra extensions $7.95 with extra 100 minutes, additional minutes 3.9¢ per minute. Starting at $99.95 per month.
12000 Plan: 12000 minutes, 30 extensions, extra extensions $5.95 with extra 100 minutes, additional minutes 2.9¢ per minute, free web conference, free call recording.
All Executive plans come with only one phone line and do not come with the option to add extensions. International numbers are also available for $24.95 per month. Fax minutes are used as part of plan’s total minutes.
Some features are not available on Executive plans even at an extra cost, such as auto attendant, dial-by-name directory, call tree, call queuing, and direct dial numbers.
100 Plan: 100 minutes and one local/toll free number. Starting at $16.95 per month.
400 Plan: 440 minutes and one local/toll free number. Starting at $19.95 per month.
2000 Plan: 2000 minutes and one local/toll free number. Starting at $29.95 per month.
Onebox LIVE Receptionist
Onebox LIVE Receptionist includes the same basic call management features found in Onebox Executive plans in addition to receptionist services. All non-receptionist plan minutes are also included for calling, faxing, and conferencing needs.
Option 1: 50 minutes of live receptionist services, 2000 additional minutes. Starting at $129.95 per month.
Option 2: 100 minutes of live receptionist services, 2000 additional minutes. Starting at $179.95 per month.
Starting Monthly Price - Shared Minutes Plans: $49.95
Starting Monthly Price(per user) - Unlimited Minutes Plans: Not Offered
Starting Number of Users - Unlimited Minutes Plans:
Setup or Activation Fees:: None
Cancellation or Early Termination Fees: None
Free Trial or Money Back Guarantee
Shared Minutes Plans(Professional)
Available Minutes – Shared Minutes Plans
Anonymous Call Rejection
Caller ID/Call Screening
Find Me/Call Routing
Call Recording: Yes - but Extra Cost
Advanced VoIP Features
Call from Web/Click to Call
Voicemail to Email
# of Server Locations: 0
Inbound & Outbound Fax: Yes - Both are Provided at no extra cost
Operator Answered Calls: Yes - but Extra Cost
Use Your Own Device
Purchase Phones?: Optional
Overage Minutes – Shared Minutes Plans
Extensions – Shared Minutes Plans
Phone #’s – Shared Minutes Plans
Plan Details – Unlimited Minutes Plans
Additional or Add-ons
Cost for Additional Local #'s: $5/month
Cost for Additional Toll Free #'s: $5/month
Cost for Vanity #'s(one time fee): $30
Cost for Virtual International Numbers: $29.95/month
Cost to Transfer a Number: Free
Cost for Additional Minutes Packages:
Can Transfer Existing Numbers
Toll Free Numbers
Virtual International Numbers
What Company Would Benefit from This Virtual Phone System?
Onebox has extremely high prices – making them unsuitable for startups or even small businesses in our opinion. Because of their limited “advanced” features, they will be unlikely to meet the needs of larger businesses. Also, their lack of support, limited information online and poor uptime will make them near impossible to use for people unfamiliar with virtual phone systems in the first place. While they do have a few redeeming qualities, most businesses may find that the cost and limited services with Onebox are not necessarily worth it.
What We Like About Onebox
International Numbers: International numbers and calling options are sometimes hard to come by in virtual phone system providers, so the fact that Onebox has international number options is worth noting, but the price is rather steep compared to their competitors.
No Contract: There is no contract to sign up with service with Onebox. If users are not satisfied with service, even outside of the 30-day money back window, they are free to cancel at anytime without incurring a fee.
Live Receptionist: Having a live receptionist helps build report and make a good first impression. While Onebox LIVE Receptionist is a stand-alone product and pricey, it is a nice addition for large businesses seeking a personal yet professional feel.
24/7 Customer Service: Users can contact customer service at anytime of the day or night on any day of the week by phone or by email should a problem arise. Since not all problems happen during business hours, this availability is a plus. It should be noted, however, that their customer service is not always as “available” as they advertise and does have multiple complaints about the quality of the customer service received.
What We Don’t Like About Onebox
Expensive Plans: Onebox offers a wide variety of plans and features, but their prices are higher than many cloud-based phone service providers. For many users the costs might outweigh the benefits. Also, considering all of the negativity and limited “advanced” features, the cost may not be worth it to small or large businesses alike.
Costly Extras: Many extra features can be added at an extra cost per extension, per month. While it is nice to have these features available, the added cost may prove too much when added to an already pricey monthly plan.
No Unlimited Plans: All plans are limited by minutes and extensions (Receptionist only). Even the priciest plans restrict minutes used per month.
Features Missing from Executive Plans: While all features can be added to the Receptionist plan, some are unavailable for Executive plans- whether considered upgrades or basic features, such as extensions. This makes Onebox Executive less than ideal for many individuals.
Few Included Lines: Only one line is included in all plans. When combined with limited or no extension options, and potentially costly add-ons, this is easily a deal breaker.
Customer Complaints: Despite impressive features and 24/7 customer service, many customers appear unhappy with service. These complaints include hidden fees, problems transferring numbers after termination, and lax customer service.
Limited Information Online: If you are unfamiliar with virtual phone systems or have issues with your service, troubleshooting will require you to contact customer service. There is almost nothing online to assist you or even guide you through setup – except a very thin FAQs section.
Onebox offers plans and services to fit a variety of business communications needs- big and small - but their high prices and limited features overall may make them unsuitable for most businesses.