How to Get a Free Phone Number

Get a permanent free phone number for your home or business

Entering phone number. Digital Vision / Getty Images

Normally, you get a phone number only when you pay for a phone landline service, when you activate a cell phone or SIM card, or when you register for a VoIP service. The number comes with the service.

However, you can get free phone numbers without engagement and monthly bills. Free phone numbers are available if you know where to look, often in a package with other interesting features. 

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Google Voice

Screenshot of the Google Voice call log.

Google Voice gives you a free phone number through which you can have multiple phones ring at the same time on an incoming call. This means that when you sign up for a free number from Google, and people call that number, you can have your computer, phone, and tablet all ring at the same time to ensure that you won't miss the call.

One interesting feature you get with Google Voice is transcribed calls, meaning that you can read your voicemail instead of listen to it. You can also port your "real" phone number to the Google Voice service.

Google Voice lets you make free local calls within the U.S. to any phone number, like businesses, other cell phones, and home phones. International calling is available, too, but you have to pay for it.

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Apps That Give Out Free Phone Numbers

Screenshots of the TextNow free Wi-Fi calling app
TextNow App.

There are lots of apps you can use to make free internet phone calls. Google Vocie is one example, but there are many others that give you a real phone number that rings the app you install to your phone or tablet.

FreedomPop, TextNow, and Textfree are just a few examples. During setup, you're given a real phone number that others can call you on and that you can use to call other phones. All calls are managed through the app, so you get to keep your real phone number, too.

These apps and others also give you text messaging capabilities, voicemail options, and other phone-like features.

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iNum

Screenshot of the iNum website.

The iNum project is interesting because the company's aim is to provide one number for the world. Through location-independent numbers, it allows users to establish a unified presence worldwide.

iNum provides users with phone numbers with the +883 global country code, a code that has been created by the ITU. You can use a +883 number as a virtual number and be contacted through a phone and another communication device anywhere in the world, without having to worry about area codes and associated rates.

Numbers from iNum are available through the service providers that are listed on the iNum website. You contact one of the service providers to obtain a free SIP account with free calling to all other iNum numbers.