How to Obtain a Free Phone Number for Calling and Texting

In today’s digital age, having an additional phone number can be immensely beneficial, offering a layer of privacy and convenience. While your primary mobile number suffices for most tasks, there are numerous free applications that provide a secondary number for calling and texting. These services are particularly useful for safeguarding your privacy in scenarios where you prefer not to share your primary number, such as dealing with telemarketers or managing volunteer activities. Additionally, they allow you to make and receive calls on devices without cellular capabilities, like Wi-Fi-only tablets or old smartphones, without the need for a traditional mobile plan.

It is important to note, however, that these free number services are not replacements for a standard mobile phone line. They rely on an internet connection, either via Wi-Fi or cellular data, and cannot guarantee the same reliability as your carrier’s voice network. If you require a more dependable solution, particularly for business purposes, a secondary line via an eSIM might be more appropriate.

Google Voice: A Trusted Option

Google Voice is a well-known and popular option for obtaining a free phone number. It is a reputable service that has been available for over a decade, although its free consumer version is limited to the United States. It provides a secondary line linked to your existing US mobile number, making it a practical choice for those who need an additional number without replacing their current service.

Steps to Get a Free Number with Google Voice:

  1. Download the App: Install Google Voice from the App Store or Play Store.
  2. Sign In: Open the app and sign in with your personal Google account.
  3. Find a Number: Use the search feature to select a phone number from available options in your area.
  4. Link Existing Number: Link your current mobile number to Google Voice to complete the setup.
  5. Start Using: Once set up, you can use the Google Voice app for calls and texts. Incoming calls will route through the app if it’s running; otherwise, they’ll forward to your primary number.

TextNow: A Versatile Alternative

TextNow offers a compelling alternative, especially for those outside the US, as it is available in Canada as well. It allows users to sign up for a free phone number using only a Wi-Fi connection, making it ideal for those who want to avoid traditional mobile plans altogether. TextNow operates as a Mobile Virtual Network Operator (MVNO) on T-Mobile’s network, offering optional SIM cards for mobile use.

Steps to Get a Free Number with TextNow:

  1. Download the App: Install TextNow from the App Store or Play Store.
  2. Sign Up: Create an account using email or a social media login.
  3. Select a Number: Choose a free number from the provided options, based on your location or manually searched area code.
  4. Grant Permissions: Allow necessary permissions for notifications and microphone access.
  5. Use the Service: Start making calls and sending texts through the TextNow app. Regular use ensures you retain the number, as inactive numbers are recycled.

Other Free Number Applications

Beyond Google Voice and TextNow, there are several other applications offering free phone numbers with similar functionalities. These apps often support ad-funded models, providing free phone numbers as long as they are used regularly. Here are a few notable options:

  • TextFree: Offers free calling and texting with ad support.
  • TextMe: Provides a free phone number with ad-supported services.
  • Dingtone: Another option for free calling and texting.
  • 2ndLine: Owned by TextNow, this app offers similar features.
  • Hushed, Flyp, and Burnr: These apps offer free trials, making them ideal for short-term use without the need for long-term commitment.

Obtaining a free phone number for calling and texting has never been easier, thanks to a plethora of available applications. Whether you choose Google Voice, TextNow, or another service, these apps offer a practical solution for maintaining privacy, managing secondary communications, or simply utilising non-cellular devices for phone calls and texts. While these services cannot fully replace a traditional mobile line in terms of reliability, they provide a flexible and cost-effective alternative for many everyday situations.

As technology continues to evolve, these applications are likely to expand their features and improve reliability, further bridging the gap between traditional and internet-based telephony. For now, they remain a valuable tool for anyone needing an additional phone number without the burden of extra costs.

Elliot Preece
Elliot Preece
Founder | Editor Elliot is a key member of the Nerdbite team, bringing a wealth of experience in journalism and web development. With a passion for technology and being an avid gamer, Elliot seamlessly combines his expertise to lead a team of skilled journalists, creating high-quality content that engages and informs readers. His dedication ensures a smooth website experience, positioning Nerdbite as a leading source of news and insights in the industry.

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