Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Are you considering eFax? Or any other j2 company?

Note: j2, which owns eFax and many other disreputable companies, has an F rating from the BBB with hundreds of complaints. Before you trust them with a credit card number, take a look at their Google search results.

j2 owns about half of the fax line companies out there, including eFax. The web is littered with complaints about those companies. What is particularly striking is the companies that were independent and had good reputations, but had slews of complaints after j2 bought them.

j2, in the guise of eFax, recently bought MaxEmail. The transition has not yet completed, but customers like me have already fled. I was glad to leave j2 in 2005, and there is no way I’m going back to a j2 company like eFax.

The companies say that prices will remain the same. Reality check: one line I looked at is going from $14.85 to $84.00 under eFax, more than 5.5x the previous price.

The companies say that the allowed fax pages will remain comparable. Reality check: one line I looked at is going from unlimited inbound pages to just 250 inbound pages. And I will lose the rollover of over 22,000 pages/messages, as well as the usage credit on the account.

The companies say that the terms and conditions will remain comparable. Reality check: if I want to reclaim my own fax number that I had ported in originally, MaxEmail charged nothing, while eFax charges between $40 and $500.

The companies say that the services will remain comparable. Reality check: we had a couple of voicemail lines with MaxEmail which allowed callers to leave messages without pressing buttons. That may sound unimportant for human callers, but it’s actually critically important with a number of health care providers for our child who use automated systems to leave messages. Those automated systems can leave a message with MaxEmail, but they cannot with eFax, because eFax doesn’t offer that capability.

The companies say that customer service will remain good. Reality check: eFax refuses to issue refunds for prepaid services even when they unilaterally change terms and conditions, and even when they disable necessary features. When I tried emailing four different fax services to ask similar questions, three of those fax services answered the questions within a couple of hours. eFax did not reply for 3 days.

I don’t know if MaxEmail will be kept around as a zombie brand, the way j2 has done with so many other brands. I’ve recommended MaxEmail many times between January 2005 and August 2016. That’s why I feel like I need to publicly unrecommend them now.

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