BasicTalk is a telecommunications company that offers VoIP home phone services through the Vonage VoIP network, allowing customers to make calls anywhere in the U.S. for a flat monthly rate of $9.99 per month, not including taxes and other fees. There is no contract required to use this home phone service, and customers are able to keep their existing phone number. It is very similar to nettalk VoIP service in that the only additional equipment that is required to use this service is a small VoIP adapter, here called the BasicTalkBox, which is an adapter that allows customers to make phone calls using their internet connections.
Our Basic Talk Review
What is Basic Talk?
BasicTalk is a VoIP home phone service that offers unlimited calling within the United States. No contract is required for this service, so there aren’t any of the contractual obligations that you often run into with other phone service companies. There also aren’t any hidden fees that you will have to worry about coming out of nowhere for you to pay. You will be able to keep your existing home number if you so choose, or you will have the option of getting a brand new one at absolutely no additional charge.
Basic Talk provides you with a home phone service and works through your high-speed internet connection. This provider does not offer high-speed internet, so you must already have them in your home to take advantage of their VoIP home phone service. You absolutely need to have high-speed internet to take advantage of this service. Despite what some people think, this is a VoIP service so it doesn’t run through your computer at all.
Unlike many other phone service companies, you don’t have to have anyone come out to your house to set it up for you. You’ll also get an Ethernet cable to hook up the box you receive from this provider to your current internet router or modem. There will also be a power adapter that you will run from the box to an outlet in your home. As long as you have a high-speed internet connection, meaning cable or DSL, as well as a working home phone (wired or cordless), you can take advantage of these VoIP services.
The Basic Talk plan costs $9.99 per month plus taxes and government fees. Some of the features and benefits that you can expect to get with this plan include unlimited U.S., Canada, and Puerto Rico calling, no annual contractor, no fees for keeping your current number, voicemail, caller ID, call waiting, and 911. You will also have full access to BasicTalk’s customer support staff if you have a problem of any kind with your service. The fact that this provider’s plan is only $9.99 automatically makes it a great choice for many people who have grown tired of paying too much money for their home phone service each month. Besides the monthly recurring fee of $9.99, you will also have to pay state and local sales tax as well as a Universal Service Fund Fee.
BasicTalk also considers more than 3000 minutes of usage per month to be “unusual”. When this provider is determining whether or not a customer’s usage is excessive, they look at the amount of unique numbers called, call lengths, call forwarding/transferring, conference calling, short duration calls, number of calls made during a month, number of calls made to a conference calling service during a month, number of calls made during business hours, and number of calls terminated and re-initiated consecutively.
How much money can you save by switching to BasicTalk?
Even with the additional taxes and fees, this VoIP home phone service provider’s $9.99 per month plan can help you save a significant amount of money on your phone bill each month. The BasicTalk Box adapter is free and the shipping charges are waived, and there are no activation fees either. With many people paying up to $70 per month for a basic home phone service, BasicTalk can save you up to $60 per month.
There are a number of features that you get with BasicTalk home phone service, including caller ID so you always know who is calling you. You will have the ability to listen to your voicemail messages, turn anonymous call block on and off, change or reset your voicemail PIN, and set voice ring count. Some of the other features that are available with this service include call waiting, do not disturb, 911 emergency dialing, and 411 Directory Assistance.
The “Do not Disturb” feature temporarily stops incoming calls from ringing on your phone so you are not bothered by them. Simply dial *78 to turn on this feature and *79 to turn it off.
The Anonymous Call Block feature prevents people who block their Caller ID from calling you. Instead of hearing your phone ring when these people call, they will simply hear a message telling them their call cannot be completed until their Caller ID is unblocked. You can turn this feature on by simply dialing *77 and turn it off by dialing *87.
The customer support that BasicTalk offers allows you to speak with actual human beings, which is definitely nice. If you ever find that you need to speak with someone from this company about a problem you are having, you can call them up or initiate a live chat session. The live chat feature is available 24/7, but the phone assistance is not. You will most likely find that the people this company has working customer support are very helpful and friendly, so you shouldn’t have any problems whatsoever with them.
The support is fairly helpful and there is a live chat feature that you can use to speak with a representative from this company anytime you have a question that you need answered. The online chat feature is available to customers 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. On this company’s support page you will find different sections that you can click, including Billing & Payment, Manage Account, Features & Service, Technical Support, and New Customers. There is an installation tutorial in case you are having any issues, though it is a fairly straightforward process so you shouldn’t need to use it. There is quite a bit of information for customers on the support section of the website so that they can get the help they need without having to go to the trouble of speaking with a representative. You will also be able to call BasicTalk’s customer support phone number, which is available Monday through Friday 9 a.m. to 12:00 midnight ET as well as Saturday and Sunday from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. ET.
Service Setup Process
Setting up your BasicTalk service will be very simple and quick. Once you have the BasicTalk Box that is mailed to you, you will just need to plug it into an electrical outlet. You will also connect the box to your Wi-Fi router or modem and your home phone with the cables that have been provided for you. After you have done these things you can start making calls to anyone you want. You will receive an installation guide with the box so there is no confusion whatsoever as to how to get everything up and running.
If you are interested in signing up for BasicTalk’s VoIP home phone service, you will simply have to go to their website and click the orange “Order Online” button located at the top right hand corner of the screen. At the bottom of the sign up page you will see a small box that says “Transfer your phone number or get a new one”, where you will be able to click “Keep my current number” or “Get a new number”. If you choose to keep your current number, you will not be charged a fee of any kind.
You will be required to enter some personal and financial information when signing up for BasicTalk, including your full name, address, and credit/debit card number. Your credit or debit card will be charged $9.99 each month automatically unless you cancel your subscription, in which case you will not be billed after that day.
BasicTalk vs magicJack vs NetTalk vs Vonage
Basic Talk and magicJack are very similar in the way they work. Both are ultra cheap and only require a small VoIP adapter, which you have to buy upfront. Both include unlimited local and long distance calling. The biggest difference is that you pay for magicJack on a yearly basis and BasicTalk on a monthly basis. magicJack costs just $40 for the year while Basictalk is $9.99 per month meaning that it costs more than twice as much as magicJack, though the fact that is runs on the Vonage network means that it is most likely more reliable. At $9.99 per month it is still a great buy.
Vonage is more expensive than any of the other budget VoIP providers in our comparison. There is however significant reasons for this, firstly Vonage doesn’t sell itself on price, like these other providers. And secondly, they offer much better customer service and support if you have issues and need to contact them.
NetTalk VoIP Service is very similar to both magicJack and BasicTalk in regards to customer service and features but on a smaller scale without the backing of a big name. It is slightly more expensive than magicJack and slightly less expensive than BasicTalk
What We Like
- Only $9.99 per month with no contract or obligation required.
- Free BasicTalk adapter, free shipping, free activation.
- The customer service is very helpful.
- No need for any equipment (except an adapter if necessary)
We really like the fact that you don’t have to sign a contract with BasicTalk and that the service itself is cheap and reliable. There is also the fact that you don’t have to pay for the adapter that is required to use these services, which was definitely a pleasant surprise.
What We Don’t Like
- There is no free domestic calling
- This home phone service can only be used with an Ethernet cable, so there is no wireless option.
- While it’s true that new customers can transfer their existing home phone number, it can take anywhere from 7-10 days to do so.
Is it easy to install BasicTalk?
Setting up BasicTalk’s home phone service is extremely simple. All you have to do is connect the BasicTalk Box to your Wi-Fi router and traditional phone. There is a step-by-step guide provided to all new customers that explains the setup process in detail.
Are there any hidden fees?
There aren’t any hidden fees, but you will have to pay state and local sales tax as well as a Universal Fund fee in addition to the recurring $9.99 monthly charge.
Can I make international calls?
Unfortunately, BasicTalk does not offer international calling as an option.
What do I do if I want to cancel my BasicTalk service?
Canceling this service is just as easy as calling up BasicTalk’s customer service phone number during business hours.
Is a computer required to use BasicTalk’s home phone service?
No. All you need to use BasicTalk’s service is a high-speed internet connection, a touch-tone phone, and the BasicTalk Box.
How do I login to my account?
You will be able to login to your BasicTalk account on the company’s official website. Click the “My Account” button the top of the website and you will be prompted to enter your user name and password.
Final Thoughts On BasicTalk
Although there are some drawbacks associated with using BasicTalk’s VoIP home phone service, it does have a lot to offer for those who are tired of paying upwards of $50 for a similar phone plan from another provider. You will get a number of features with this service and you won’t have to pay anything for the hardware, which is definitely not something that can be said about all VoIP services. BasicTalk offers a good quality connection that is also highly reliable for some (but not all). Considering the fact that this particular home phone service provider has a good reputation despite being a bit smaller than some of its competitors, you will certainly want to consider it as a viable option.
If you are looking to save as much money as possible on your home phone service, this is definitely one of the best ways that you can do that without having to make too many sacrifices in the process. If you want to save even more money we suggest you consider magicJack and possibly even NetTalk. There are quite a few different VoIP home phone service providers that you will have to choose from, but most of them don’t offer quite as much as this one does for such a low price. While you may find it a bit annoying that you can’t make or receive phone calls if your internet connection goes out, there are a lot of positive things about this provider to keep in mind before making a final decision of any kind.