The Quick Start Guide to VOIP for the Home, Home Office, and Small Business

VOIP Provider Overview—Packet8

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Packet8 (and parent company 8x8 Inc.) out of San Jose, California, offer VoIP services  aimed at the home, home office, and small business market. 

Although not marketed as expensively as Vonage, Packet8 is unique in that since 1997, the company has been striving to offer voice AND video to customers through its VOIP and videophone services.

While Vonage announced a videophone service in 2005, there's still no sign of it on their web site. By contrast, Packet8 got there first and showcases the  DV326 Videophone. With the Packet8 VideoPhone, you can send and receive full-motion video and clear, delay-free audio over any broadband Internet connection. Mind you, you have to call another Packet8 VideoPhone subscriber.

Comparing Packet8 Service to other VOIP Providers

When compared with other VOIP providers, Packet8's pricing is quite good. Here's an example. Coming in at just under $20, Packet8's Freedom Unlimited Plan is on par with Lingo Unlimited Plan. Sunrocket and Vonage are slightly more expensive at $25.

Packet8 Products

Deciphering Packet8’s service plans can be challenging. The service plans are broken down into residential, business, and international. However the device and other hardware (such as phone, videophone) you want to use limits your choice of service plan.

Here's a quick summary:

  • Freedom Unlimited - Gives you unlimited local and long distance calling to US and Canada for $19.95 per month.
  • Freedom Unlimited Videophone – unlimited calls worldwide using Packet8 VideoPhones ($149.99 each) for $19.95(US) per month with 2-year agreement. (Early termination fee of $299.)
  • Freedom International - For customers who live outside the U.S., you get a US phone number and can make up to 1000 minutes of calling to US and Canadian phone numbers for $19.95 (US) per month
  • Virtual Office - A hosted Internet PBX service for $39.99 per month. You have a central phone number with extensions, unlimited calling, and business class features like 3-way conference calling, hunt groups, voice mail and more
  • Virtual Attendant - An automated call routing solution for businesses that lets you connect wired, mobile, home phones and other Virtual Office extensions, regardless of geographic location, under a single primary phone number
  • Business 2000
  • Freedom Unlimited Global - Gives you unlimited calling in the US and Canada as well as to select countries in Europe, Asia, Latin America, and the Middle East.

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Packet8 Service Reviews

For consumer reviews of Packet8 services, check out the following sources:

Got Questions? Ask Packet8 Yourself

  • Packet8.com —Has 24/7 telephone support, email technical support, and web-based technical support.

Want to know More?

Comparing VOIP Service Providers—Where to Start?

VOIP Provider Overview—Vonage

VOIP Provider Overview—Skype

VOIP Provider Overview—Lingo

VOIP Provider Overview—SunRocket

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