Chic on a Shoestring Decorating: Magic Jack Review, my honest, unbiased opinion.

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Magic Jack Review, my honest, unbiased opinion.

How I save $500 a year on phone serve, an unbiased Magic Jack Review by Chic on a Shoestring Decorating
Hi there,
Well, if you looked at the title of this post you know I am going to review a Magic Jack.  But, I want you to know that I was NOT paid and I was NOT given the Magic Jack Plus to do this review. This is NOT a sponsored post.  I just wanted to share my experiences with the magic jack plus because whenever I tell someone I use the magic jack they always ask me a ton of questions.  I also love to save money and share a good deal with friends. 

I have saved over $500 per year by using a magic jack plus.  That's a hefty yearly savings in my book.  It's been 3 years now so that is a whopping $1500!  Maybe you are interested in one too?

First, let me just tell you that there is nothing magical about the magic jack.  It does not pull a rabbit out of a hat, saw a pretty woman in a box in half, or make itself disappear.  That was my first disappointment with the "Magic" jack plus.

Ok, sorry, I couldn't help myself.

But seriously.  I bought a magic jack because I was sick and tired of my phone bill going up.  I had bundled cable, internet, and phone when we moved several years ago.  It was cheap!!!  $99 a month (plus taxes,fees)  for all three services,   What a deal!

Until it expires, then the price just keeps going up.  And up. And up again.

So why didn't I just quit using a landline and use my cell phone like so many folks are doing these days?

There are a variety of reasons I need a landline...

1.  My cell phone coverage at my home is sketchy at best.  Lots of dropped calls and cut-out calls.  What is a cut-out call you ask?  It's when you're talking on the phone and you have to say "Sorry, can you repeat that please, my phone cut out again." and again and again...

2.  I have young kids.  As a mom, there is that fear that I will need to call 911 for some kind of emergency and my cell phone won't work, or the battery is dead, or I can't find it because I left it in the car or one of my boys hid it under a couch cushion.  When in an emergency situation with your child and you are most likely panicking or freaking out you want and need your phone to work NOW.  The landline is my back-up.  Or in my case, my cell phone is my back-up.

3.  I talk on the phone a lot.  As a stay-home/work-from home mom I'm home a lot and get quite a few phone calls.  I'm really cool and popular so people want to call me.  Hahaha just kidding, wanted to make sure you were still with me but I really do talk on the phone quite a bit. ;)

4.  Could I ever have enough cell minutes?  At the time I bought the magic jack I did not have unlimited minutes and my minutes were split with my hubby.  This could be a costly problem if your only phone is your cell, we all know when you go over your minutes you have to pay one million dollars and give the cell company your first born.  Now that I have unlimited minutes it's not an issue but numbers 1-3 above still are.

When I bought the magic jack I was paying roughly $45 for my phone service through my cable provider.  I started checking for other options.  I could've gone with the phone company in my area but it wasn't any cheaper in the long run.  They had the same scheme, sucker you in with a cheap  introductory rate which would hike after 6 months.  Wasn't gonna do that again.

I bought the magic jack plus when it was relatively new in 2012 for $90, (it is now only $39 or less!)  The original magic jack was $39 at the time but had less options. I was very skeptical of it and annoyed that it was almost $100 bucks but at that price I knew it would pay for itself in less than 3 months if it worked.

I bought the Magic Jack Plus because it allows you to make calls through your internet service.  It does not need to be hooked up to a computer like the original magic jack, only to your router/modem.  You then plug in your phone to the magic jack plus.  But how do you have more than one "landline" phone in your home if the phones have to be plugged into the magic jack?

We use these:  Panasonic KX-TG7875S Link2Cell Bluetooth Enabled Phone with Answering Machine & 5 Cordless Handsets

All you need to do is plug the base into the magic jack and then the extra handsets can work anywhere else in your home.  The handset bases will only need to be plugged into an electrical outlet, no phone jack.  Pretty slick!

Since buying our Magic Jack Plus the company has come up with a new product called the Magic Jack Go.

The Magic Jack Plus and Go really aren't very different.  It appears that the only difference is the Go has a free "magicApp" (sounds exciting!, insert eye roll here) that allows you to forward your home magic jack go phone to your smart phone.  The only other differences I could find were price (Go is more expensive but gives you 12 months of "free" service the first year while plus gives you 6 months "free" service the first year. (this may have changed by the time you are reading this)

After 3 years of use in my home, here is my list of Magic Jack pros and cons.  I have listed for both Magic Jack Plus and Magic Jack Go because they are essentially the same thing, the Go supports a phone app which seems to be the only real difference.

Magic Jack Plus and Go Pros:
  • *CHEAP!  You really can not beat the price for a landline. I pay $30 a YEAR plus an additional $10 to keep my phone number (was paying $540 a year to cable company)
  • *You can keep your own phone number. (yearly $10 fee) 
  • *Reliable service, as long as your internet is running you're good to go. 
  • *Low Maintenance, about 4-6 times a year I have to reset my magic jack plus by unplugging it and plugging it back in.  No big deal.
  • *Easy to Install, plug it into the wall, then into your router/modem, then plug your phone cord into the magic jack plus.
  • *You can take it with you and use it anywhere you have internet service, (I have never done this).
  • *Free local & long distance calling to the U.S. and Canada, low international rates, free voicemail, free caller ID, free call forwarding, free call waiting, free 411
  • *Magic Jack GO allows you to forward calls to your smart phone
Magic Jack Plus Cons:
  • *No caller ID on call waiting
  • *Call waiting beeps 5 long times before the magic jack answering voicemail picks up.  This is extremely annoying as it seems to go on forever if you don't want to answer the other line or on a business call.
  • *Sometimes when I make an outgoing call the phone cuts out the moment the person I'm calling picks up so I don't hear them say "hello".  This causes an awkward pause on my end followed by them saying a confused "hello??" again or me saying "hello??"  It doesn't do it very often and I've learned to listen for it so it has become less awkward.  In the days of choppy cell phone calls it is almost expected that this happens every once in a while so I can live with it.
  • *You have to pay the extra $10 every year to keep your old phone number.  When I signed up I thought it was a one time fee but maybe I overlooked it in the fine print, it's still worth it.
I have heard mixed reviews about their customer support but, I have never called them so I don't feel I can give an opinion. I think it's a good thing that I've never needed to call them in the three years I've been using my magic jack.

So, I would highly recommend the Magic Jack to anyone wanting to keep a landline and save their hard-earned cash.  Of course it is not perfect and has some quirks every once in a while but so did my landline.

Amazon has great prices on Magic Jacks, click on the picture to see a price list:
Magic Jack Plus

Magic Jack Go

Please feel free to add your experiences with Magic Jack products or ask questions in the comments below.

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*Disclosure: This post includes affiliate links but I was NOT paid or given a free product to review or use this product.  All opinions are mine.  See my full disclosure under "Advertising & Disclosure" above.

1 comment :

  1. The magic jack site says the $10 fee to keep your number is a one time fee, not yearly.
    Is this not true? (enter "port" in the search bar)

    Your Question
    Can I transfer or "port" my current land line telephone number to magicJack?

    Please click here and enter your number to check availability.
    To initiate your port order click here to log into your magicJack account and follow these instructions:
    Click the "Phone Numbers" tab and then "Transfer". Next click the "Transfer My Number" button.
    Follow the prompts to submit your transfer request.

    There will be a non-refundable $10 one time fee. We will provide status via email.
    Note: Canadian numbers cannot be ported to magicJack at this time.


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