Compare Magic Jack with Skype and Vonage

Depending on what you need from a VOIP service, each of these services has their best points. If you are just mostly interested in chat and video chat with maybe a few cheap long distance international calls, Skype would probably be the best for you. You can chat free to another Skype user and international calls to Europe are as low as 2 cents per minute.

Maybe replacing your current telephone service entirely is what you are looking for. In that case, I would go with Vonage. But, I wouldn’t cancel the current phone service until I had used Vonage for a few months. Also, if you have a lot of problems with your internet service going down, you would also be out of phone service during those times too. However, Vonage will relay any phone calls to another number for you, so if you use a cell phone also, that could work out for you.

If you’re not really looking to replace your current phone service, but would like a way to make cheap long distance calls, give Magic Jack a try. I think in the future, Magic Jack may develop into a company to entirely replace your phone service, but a new company always has growing pains so I don’t recommend getting Magic Jack and dumping your current phone service until they have more a track record behind them.

Magic Jack/Skype/Vonage Feature Comparison Chart


Magic Jack



Free Calls to Landline Phones




Free Calls to Cell Phones




Free Calls to Other Computers


Only to other Skype users


Free International Calling

Yes, but only if both parties have the Magic Jack device



Free Voice Mail




Free Caller ID


Sort of, the other person’s Skype user name


Free Call Waiting




Free Call Forwarding


Only if forwarded to another Skype user name


Cost of Service


Varies. Ranges from Free to $60/year subscriptions

$24.99/month, will be other fees and taxes.


New service, still to be determined by long use. Unverified problems reported with service not working after a couple of months.

Very good.

Very good.

911 Calling

Yes, but I wouldn’t depend on it.


Yes, but like Magic Jack, I wouldn’t depend on it in an emergency.

Use ordinary Landline Phone with the Service?


May use a Skype phone which is very similar


Must Computer be turned on to use service?


Yes, you must also have your internet browser open and the Skype program running.


Call Quality


Sometimes intermittant or scratchy.

Very good.

Ability to Send & Receive Faxes




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This entry was posted on Friday, January 2nd, 2009 at and is filed under Compare Magic Jack VoIP Service. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

80 Responses to “Compare Magic Jack with Skype and Vonage”

  1. grace Says:

    I need phone number I can call and more information

  2. Walter Lebowitz Says:

    I just paid for and signed up for an additional 5 years use of my Majic Jack. But the plug that goes into the computer broke off.

    I need to send this broken one back and get a replacement.

    How do I do that?

    Walter Lebowitz

  3. Don Says:

    I have had Vonage for several years now and I have had intermittent problems. I have had a reocurring problem now for the last couple years where during a phone conversation the person I’m talking to will become scratchy and then will drop off all together. I then have to wait several minutes before I can get a dial tone. It’s so much of a problem now that I’m considering other options. Leaning toward Magic Jack.

  4. LinZi Says:

    Keep up the fantastic work! Look forward to reading more from you in the future. I think it will be also nice if you add “send to email” tool so people can forward the articles to their friends easily.

  5. William Says:

    I have owned and used MJ for about 2 years with little to no problem. I have set it up for many of my friends & family. I often find that the majority of the problems associated with MJ are user and ISP problems. I have and Aunt that has to install every piece of software that come around and complains constantly about how slow her computer is when she has 48 Icons in her system tray on 1 gig of memory.
    2 nephews that have a 1.5 tara bite hard drives in there computers and feel its a race to who can fill them up the fastest. People Please if you don’t need the software dont install it and if you get a little time defage and optimize you hard drives. You will also find that all those little cute Icons in your systems tray eat up memory so unless you have 18 gigs of ram on your system stay away from those little tic that ask if you would like this put program to start up and load every time and try going to control panel and using the software uninstall if you don’t like the software.
    you will find that your system will run a lot smoother and not freeze up as often. I just thought this ought to be said as fare as MJ I love it low cost and yes I receive faxes. These day who does not like to save money.
    My System: 4-computers set up on a wireless N/gate network on Clear’s WI/MAX system with 3.8 mbs D/l speeds I stream Video, talk on the MJ VOIP, while Wife plays games, and Daughter Steams TVU and HULU. Basically I Pay $52.00 a month for Cellphone, TV, Home phone and Internet @ home and every were i go in Las Vegas with my laptop and Loving Life In Las Vegas. ;+) How Many People You Know Can Say That???

  6. Steve Says:

    Has anyone bought a modem, router or combo modem/router with a USB port with Magic Jack?

    I should think you would be able to plug Magic Jack into these devices and make calls without having the computer on?

    Belkin and Netgear make these wireless devices with a USB port.

    I use Vonage at home and I plug an ordinary phone into the back of a Linksys wireless router to make calls. The computer does not have to be on to use Vonage.


  7. Dean Redmann Says:

    What phone number do you use with the MJ?
    Can I plug in my portable phone base to the MJ and have the remotes work throughout the house?

  8. Lisa Says:

    I have used MJ for 2 years and several people I know have converted in the last year.
    My father-in-law ran a phone cord from the MJ to the phone jack in the wall and it activates all of the phone jacks in the house to the MJ. So, you can have MJ work in your house the same way your land line service does.

  9. Hank Says:

    One correction needed. Skype to Skype anywhere in the world is free.

  10. Bill Says:

    I dought if this will get read because of the amount of messages listed. I used to have Verizon home service and I changed to Vonage and wish I hadn’t. I only did it because I needed to talk with a friend twicw a month in England. I could anywhere in the States free with verizon but not England. My Vonage experience has not been good. First my bill went from 24.99 to 30.00 after 2 months. Second they billed me 99.00 for hookup that they said was free. Third many times I will be on a local call and it will start cutting in and out. I have heard from more than one person that they are hard to cancell from even some horror stories. If vonage wouldn’t cut out so much I would say it is pretty good as far as pice goes, although Verizon has now come around with a good price long distant free service in the States.

    I think we have moved far enough ahead in comunications that we should be able to give a flat service anywhere in the World for a 25 price.

  11. Jam Says:

    why can’t i use magicjack while my skype application is open?

  12. Blank Stephenson Says:

    An earlier comment stated that MJ cannot be used with satellite internet. That’s partially true/wrong. You CAN use MJ but the lag time is around 10-20 seconds. That means when you say ‘HI’, the persone on the other end won’t hear you for a while. Then when they respond you won’t hear them for a while. The delay can run up to a minute if you were in Alaska; maybe only 10-15 seconds if you are in the southern states. Hughes systems recommends that if you MUST use their system for talking, say something like ‘over’ when you are finished speaking.

  13. BillK Says:

    Has anyone tried using MJ over a 3G (EVDO Rev A) cell phone wireless (e.g. Sprint, Verizon) data network? What type of problems, if any, have you experienced? Thanks!

  14. Moe Says:

    Moe asks:

    Could MJ or Vonage be used on a DSL with no phone service? I want to do away with my ISP phone service but keep the DSL internet connection with them. I know I can so will MJ work that way or would Vonage be a better choice? I realy don’t wany to leave my computer on all the time.

  15. bwanges65 Says:

    Does it offer free caller id? In your comparison, you say there is caller id, but it’s not mentioned in the main page of the website. And can people call my mj no. and leave a message which I can listen to later, even if my computer is off? Thanks.

  16. stephen cohen Says:

    I live in San Pedro and can not get my magicjack to work, I get a dial tone, but I have no phone number and can not receive or dial out. This is in the greater Los Angeles area is that my problem and when will it be fixed?

  17. luzia Says:

    i live here in US FLORIDA , i heard about MJ,i love to talk my family in the ,phillipines ,i am looking for chepper phone international calling ,MY QUESTION IS if ever i get MJ .DO I CALL MY FAMILY IN THE PHILLIPINES USING MJ FOR FREE? MY FAMILY IN THE PHILLIPINES NO MJ.OR THEY NEED ALSO AN MJ? PLS I NEED AN ANSWER THANKS

  18. Gerald De Badts Says:

    Can I use my existing home phone number with magic jack?

  19. glen walters Says:

    If you use your land line phone number, do you have to use the area code when you make local phone calls and would people calling you local have to use the area code. Not needing a computor is misleading , how can you have internet with out a computor hooked up or not. Maybe I just misunderstand the entire concept.

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  26. joke Says:

    I Love LOVE LOVE this laptop. I became a little hesitant his or her were both bad and the good reviews. i want to an issue that only agreed to be finished . for gaming, music, portable and perfect for the pupils.

  27. Lokard Desmock Says:

    Aw, this was a really nice post. In idea I would like to put in writing like this moreover – taking time and actual effort to make a very good article… but what can I say… I procrastinate alot and under no circumstances appear to get one thing done.

  28. doped Says:

    i just bought a M.J i have beening trying for 3days to hook up i have try 20or more time to process their registering have talk to chat persson 6 times with no luck at all .mabey spent 6or7 hrs whith them.i use visa card fill in all the blanks comes back we are unable to process your method of payment 20 time’s i try this, is what chat does they get you to try again & agian agian they know nothing else to do . i have phone visa ask why my card is not working there reply is there is nothing wrong whith your card it as gone though each time which mean they can collectALL 20 TIME, I WHY I ASK THEM CAN I TALK TO A LIVE PERSON CAN’T DO THAT TALK TO TECK EXPERT I AM THING IT ‘S A CON JOB .

  29. Wadid Boutros Says:

    Dear Magic Jack official,

    Please be advised that my subscription for # 516 515 4814 has expired on August 7Th. 2012, I renewed the subscription on same date and payment was by visa card number ending 7370 of Wadid Yacoub Boutros on 08/07/2012 at 23:37 hr to the MagicJack.Co for the amount of 31.39USD.

    Still since then I get the message that the service has expired and renewal is needed.

    Kindly investigate and advice.



  30. Wadid Boutros Says:

    Dear Magic Jack official,

    Please be advised that my subscription has expired on August 7Th. 2012, I renewed the subscription on same date and payment was by visa card number ending 7370 of Wadid Yacoub Boutros on 08/07/2012 at 23:37 hr to the MagicJack.Co for the amount of 31.39USD.

    Still since then I get the message that the service has expired and renewal is needed.

    Kindly investigate and advice.



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