Google Fax Number – How to Get Yours!
For many years, faxing required you not only to buy a fax machine, but also to take care of everything that involves having one: the installation of a dedicated fax line, the purchase of supplies for the machine and its regular maintenance. The mere fact of implementing this technology required spending extra resources and time.
Nowadays things are so different, that it’s possible to get a working fax number in a matter of minutes.
We have advanced so much in the field of Internet fax, that we can use a Google fax number to receive faxes in Gmail in a simple and easy way, without having to invest in any additional equipment. In this article you will learn how to get your own number, and how you can even start using it for free.
What Do You Need to Get Started?
First we'll clarify that when we are talking about a Google fax number we are talking about a virtual fax number that is able to integrate with Gmail, and that allows faxing online. These dedicated numbers are not currently provided by Google, so we will need a couple of things to get started:
If you already have a Gmail account, you just need to create one with an online fax service. These third-party services are vital to adding fax functions in Gmail, in addition to other more advanced features. The most important thing is that they give you a free virtual fax number with each account.
Currently you can choose between a local number and a toll-free number. There are no good or bad decisions when it comes to picking a number, you have to choose one that best suits your business' style. If you already have an active number, but you are using a land-line, you can request assistance from your favorite fax service to move it to a digital FOIP (Fax Over Internet Protocol) line , capable of converting digital documents to fax and vice versa.
How to Get your Google Fax Number
The only way to have a virtual fax number is through an online fax service. They already have numbers available in different cities around the USA, and some even have numbers in different countries around the World!
When you sign up with an online fax service, you'll have a list of numbers to choose from, and you don't have to wait more than minutes for them to be active!
On average, the best services cost around $10 a month, although you can certainly find more affordable options. These services don't work with any type of contract beyond your subscription. As long as you continue to pay, the account remains active at all times.
Can You Get One for Free?
Yes. There is a way to obtain a temporary Google fax number without spending a dime, and it's through a free trial account.
Online fax services offer free trial accounts that allow you to access all the benefits of a basic plan for 30 days. That includes your own virtual fax number in some cases. Although some services ask for payment information, they will not charge you anything unless you decide to continue using them after the trial period.
Creating this type of account is a great idea, not only to get a free number, but to fully test how email fax works.
Google Fax Services You Should Try
Currently you can find several online fax services at your disposition, that of course, includes the good and the bad. A good service has to be able to easily integrate fax from Gmail and at the same time provide the features you need to speed up your faxing tasks. Stay away from services that promise low prices but then want to charge you hefty set-up and overage fees.
To help you get started, here are a couple of services that we can recommend after thoroughly testing them. These are services allow you to create a free account in a few seconds.
RingCentral offers a complete line of virtual office products, including online fax. This is one of our favorite services because it is always at the forefront in the field of email-faxing, providing advanced functions that make the sending and receiving documents to breeze, like the ability to fax through Google Drive.
They offer toll-free and local numbers in all the cities of USA, Canada and United Kingdom.
eFax is a high quality fax service developed by j2 Global, one of the largest companies in the field of telecommunications.
This service is perhaps the largest one right now, with presence in more than 40 countries around the World. You can find a multitude of local fax numbers, also toll-free numbers in the cities and countries where they are available.
How Your Google Fax Number Works
For the user, a Google fax number will automatically redirect faxes to Gmail, so they can be read electronically. But what happens in the background before that?
When someone sends you a fax, she/he will have to dial your virtual fax number. There will be no difference the person sending you the fax, but this number sends the transmission through a digital line to powerful fax servers. It's on these servers that the fax contents will be converted to a digital file, more specifically a PDF which can be opened on any computer or mobile device.
Once the document is converted, it is included as an attachment in an email and then sent to your Gmail account. From there you can download, read or print it as you like. This process takes only a few seconds to complete, and is 100% secure (even more than traditional faxing!).
Keep Your Current Fax Number
If your company already has an established fax number, you can keep it and avoid updating all your contacts with a new one. To do this, you must start a process known as "fax number porting", which will move the number from a land line to a digital line.
The porting will be taken care of by the service of your preference. The vast majority of them help you complete this process for free, so you can start faxing as soon as possible.
Once your number is moved to the Internet, it must be propagated across the Web, so it may take a few days before your number is fully operational again. Keeping this in mind, your service will give you with a free temporary fax number that you can use during those days to avoid missing any fax.
If you plan on porting your number, we recommend you choose among the best providers given the experience they have on these types of processes.