8×8, Inc: Odd Name, Serious Business.
8×8 (www.8×8.com) was formed in 1987 under the name Integrated Information Technology. In 1996 the name was changed to 8×8 to reflect the company’s focus on programmable solutions for the videoconferencing market. 8×8 continues to deliver telecommunications solutions from semiconductors to software to VoIP services. 8×8 refers to the 8-pixel by 8-pixel block that is the programming basis for video compression methods.
8×8 is based in Sunnyvale, California. The company has been a BBB Accredited business since March 1, 2009 and has a BBB rating of A+.
8×8: Unified Communications in a Box.
8×8 is a VoIP provider. Fax is part of what they do, but not the major thrust of their business. 8×8 gives you the ability to choose between connecting your fax machine to the Internet or using online fax instead. They include IP phones, mobile apps, and Analog Telephone Adapters (ATAs) as part of their comprehensive suite of services.
8×8′s Fax Extensions use the T.38 standard for real-time faxing over TCP/IP networks. You are actually attaching your traditional fax machine to the Internet. Their website puts forth a blunt claim for their T.38 fax service, stating their fax service performs “as reliably and seamlessly as traditional fax service.”
Online fax (Internet fax) is not offered as a stand-alone service. 8×8 offers it as a standard feature with their Virtual Office Pro extension. The service uses a login web interface to do all fax handling. When you receive a fax, you are notified by email. Clicking the link in the email directs you to the web portal where you log in and manage your faxes. 8×8 does not offer a email to fax service. All online faxing is done using your web browser.
Costs and Options
Extensions are the basic unit in 8×8′s system. You build the office telephone system you need one extension at a time. This way you don’t pay for what you don’t need, and you can add and subtract capability as you need.
8×8 lists all their fax offerings as components of a VoIP package or as optional components available to VoIP subscribers. For $29.95 per month you can have the Unlimited Extension. There is a one-time $39.99 activation fee. This plan gives the small business an impressive array of business phone features including Auto Attendant, Music/Message on Hold, Directory and more.
You can add unlimited fax by adding the Unlimited Fax Extension for $39.99 per month with a $29.99 one-time activation fee and $59.99 for the purchase of the adapter for your fax machine. Metered Fax costs $14.99 per month with a 29.99 activation fee and the same $59.99 hardware purchase. Metered Fax gives you 300 minutes inbound or outbound, with a 3.5 cent per minute overage fee. This is not online fax, it is using your fax machine (or computer fax modem) to send and receive faxes over the Internet.
If you want Internet faxing rather than using a fax machine over the Internet, then you need to look at the Virtual Office Pro packages. Either the Unlimited Extension Pro ($49.99 per month) or the Metered Extension Pro include Internet faxing in their basic features. As mentioned previously, this is online fax, not using your fax machine at all.
Bottom Line – If you are looking for a comprehensive office phone solution that incorporates faxing capabilities, 8×8 has what you need and a reputation of making good on their promise.Compare Online Fax Services.