Skype vs. Google Voice: Feature-by-feature comparison
|VIDEO CHAT||Yes*||Yes||*Available only through integration with Google’s “Voice and Video Chat” (requires plug-in installation), video chat not within Google Voice itself.|
|FREE INTERNATIONAL CALLING||No*||Yes**||*International calls are not free/supported with Google Voice, but you can install Google’s Voice and Video Chat for free international calling (does not extend to landline and mobile phones).
**Only Skype-to-Skype international calls are free.
|UNLIMITED DOMESTIC CALLS (INCLUDING MOBILE AND LANDLINE NUMBERS)||Yes||No*||*Skype-to-Skype domestic calls are free, but calls to mobile and landline phones cost extra using a Skype subscription (pay as you go: 2.3 – 2.6 cents/min, 1.2 – 1.4 cents/min). Subscriptions range from $2.99/month for U.S. and Canada to $13.99/month for unlimited worldwide. Certain subscriptions offer free (but limited) calls to landline/mobile phones.|
|VOICE, IM AND VIDEO INTEGRATION ON SINGLE PLATFORM||No*||Yes||*Video calls are only available through Google’s Voice and Video Chat plug-in.|
|FREE SMS||Yes*||No**||*Only domestic SMS is free
**Skype Credit must be bought to SMS; rates vary by country, U.S. (not including Hawaii/Alaska): 11.2 cents/message.
|FREE VOICEMAIL||Yes*||Yes||*Google Voice also allows you to listen to voicemail in real-time and answer the call at any time.|
|FREE CALL FORWARDING (Public Switched Telephone Network [PSTN] INTEGRATION)||Yes||No*||*Certain paid subscriptions offer free call forwarding and purchasing Skype Credit allows you to pay per minute (Rates vary by country, U.S. [not including Hawaii/Alaska]: 2.3 cents/min).|
|FREE VOICEMAIL TRANSCRIPTION||Yes||No*||*Costs extra (25 cents/message).|
|FREE CALL RECORDING||Yes*||No||*Google Voice has free call recording with incoming calls, not outgoing calls.|
|FREE CALL BLOCKING||Yes||Yes|
|FREE INDIVIDUAL PHONE NUMBER||Yes||No*||*You can get your own number for $18 for three months, or $60 for a year (through a Skype Premium subscription, users get a 33% discount for 3 months on their numbers, and a 50% discount for a year).|
|NEEDS PHONE PLAN||Yes*||No**||*You need a phone plan to use Google Voice, but can use Google Voice and Video Chat for free via WiFi connection.
**A phone plan is unnecessary because you can connect through WiFi.
|FREE GROUP VIDEO CHAT||Yes*||No**||*Free group video chat is available only through Google’s “Google+ Hangouts” application.
**This is free/available only with Skype Premium paid subscription (cost varies by country, U.S.: $4.99/month for 12-month subscription, $7.49/month for 3-month subscription).
|ABILITY TO PLACE 911 EMERGENCY CALLS||No||No|
|“BUSINESS VERSION” OF THE SERVICE AVAILABLE AIMED AT TYPICAL COMPANY NEEDS||No||Yes*||*”Skype for Business” costs more and includes features like cheaper calls, group calling, collaboration functions and contact with non-Skype customers. Cost varies depending on business size and other factors.|
|REQUIRES A CLIENT||No||Yes*||*Download the Skype client.|
|REQUIRES A PLUG-IN||Yes*||No||*Download the Google Voice plug-in.|