While most people have heard of email, there are many web users who have never heard of Internet or online fax. This is the equivalent of sending faxes via the web rather than through the old traditional facsimile machine in the office. Like email, web faxing is a relatively new phenomenon which simply means using the Internet and your email system to send and receive your faxes. In order to use online fax you have to sign up for an account with an Internet fax service provider, who will supply you with a Toll-Free or local fax number you can use. Your faxes are sent as email attachment, usually in TIFF or PDF format. Your online fax service provider acts as your intermediary to handle and process all your faxing. Keep in mind, with an Internet faxing account you dont need an extra dedicated fax phone line because everything is done via the web. However, you can still send faxes to and from the old traditional fax machine, your online provider will act on your behalf to process your faxes
With an Internet fax service you are generally given an online site (interface) where you can log-on to send and receive your faxes. This web account will also store your faxes so that they are available to you at all times. How long and the amount of faxes you can store will depend upon which service you choose, so it pays to do a little homework first before you sign up to any one service. These fax providers will also have different monthly rates but the average cost is around $10 a month, but there are much cheaper quality services you can get, especially if your faxing requirements are very minimum. Some services are as low as $20 a year or you can also get a pay as you go service.
Why are millions of individuals and companies switching over to this new way of faxing?
There are many reasons: online faxing can be much cheaper especially when you factor in the low start-up costs and the cost of a separate phone line. Online fax is paperless so it is seen as more environmentally friendlier than regular faxing. It also uses no inks, toners and there are none of those messy annoying paper jams. No more missed faxes because of busy signals. You can also send many faxes simultaneously. Web faxing can also be much more secure than traditional faxing since your faxes can be encrypted. Plus, all your faxing is completely mobile, you can send and receive your faxes anywhere, anytime - as long as you have Internet access and these days thats just about everywhere on the planet. This new way of faxing is much more convenient since you can use laptops, PDAs, cell phones... to send and receive your faxes. It is also extremely easy to use, as simple as using email, anyone can do it. Furthermore, online faxing is seen as the wave of the future, connecting all your faxing with computers and the web. Plus, we must not forget about the whole concept of competitiveness when speaking about online fax. If your business or company depends heavily on timely faxes for bringing in sales, closing deals or communicating with clients; then having a fax service thats available 24/7, 365 days of the year (regardless of where youre located) is a definite advantage to have in your corner. Sometimes it may just be a matter of keeping up with your competition who might already be using web faxing in their own businesses.