There are many options for secondary numbers out there. It’s pretty simple to use a random number generator and get a new number, but what if you don’t just want a temporary number? What if you want to add a permanent virtual number to your device?

Buying a second number through a traditional carrier like Verizon or T-Mobile can be expensive. It may even require you to purchase a second phone–who wants to carry around two cell phones? It’s 2019, no one has time for that!

Here are the top mobile apps to add a permanent virtual number to your phone; learn which provides the most useful features for your secondary number!

Google Voice

Google Voice is one of the original options for free U.S. virtual phone numbers. Since 2009 Google Voice has been providing secondary numbers for WiFi calling and texting. This service lets you place and receive phone calls and texts over the internet.

It’s free to create a Google Voice account, but international (and some U.S. and Canada) calls are charged separately.

Google Voice includes some industry-standard features like voicemail, call forwarding, group messaging. They also have some unique ones, like the ability to record calls and transcribe voicemail.

Google Voice only offers U.S. numbers, which is a drawback for international users. While it’s a consistent way to keep a permanent virtual number, the slow update schedule and limited number selection make this a less reliable option.

You can hold on to your Google Voice number for as long as you like, but you are limited to just the single number, which is a drawback if you want both a permanent secondary number and disposable numbers.

Sideline

Man using smartphone cell number while looking at laptop computer with a permanent virtual mobile number

Sideline is a mobile app that provides users with a dedicated business line. They also offer vanity numbers.

You can only have one number linked to your account at any time, so your options are limited. Like Google Voice, it’s free to create an account, but all phone numbers are priced individually.

Key features include call forwarding, group messaging, and “team numbers.”

Team numbers all multiple Sideline accounts access to a single secondary number, to share responsibility for that number. This is a great idea for a business number. However, this access is only possible if no one on the team already has an existing Sideline account. Setting up team numbers can be complicated, so we would recommend consulting their FAQ as a guideline.

Sideline starts at $9.99 per month for unlimited calling and texting. This is a good deal, but the app does disclaim that there are restrictions to some U.S. territories and international destinations, so check out the fine print.

Hushed

Hushed is available for both iOS and Android devices. With the Hushed virtual number app, you can easily add a new number to your mobile device and keep it long-term.

Hushed offers numbers from more than 60 countries, and has a variety of prepaid temporary plans available, including:

  • 7 Day Plan
  • 30 Day Plan
  • 30 Day Worldwide or International Plan
  • 365 Day Plan

Another plan option is the Unlimited Plan auto-renewing subscription. This package gives you a U.S., Canada or UK number with unlimited calling and texting. Best of all, you can retain the number indefinitely for only $4.99 USD per month, or $47.99 per year! This is a great option for keeping your number permanently; just select a number and it will automatically renew monthly or yearly.

Key features include custom voicemail, call forwarding or call routing, and auto-reply text messages. Hushed also offers toll-free phone numbers, which are a fantastic option for business numbers!

Hushed provides a Free 3 Day Trial Number, so you can get started with the app at no cost.

Final Thoughts: Which app is the best option for your permanent second number?

It’s no secret that we think Hushed is the best disposable phone number app on the market today, but it never hurts to consider all options. Hushed is a standout performer in this field because it provides multiple numbers. This means that Hushed users are not limited to a single secondary phone number like they would be with Google Voice or Sideline.

All three apps have some neat extra features. We really like Sideline’s team numbers and Google Voice’s voicemail transcriptions. But if it’s reliability and simplicity you’re looking for, then look no further than Hushed.

Additionally, with Hushed, you can retain your number as long as you wish. This provides the ability to make your temporary phone number into a permanent number. Whether for business or personal number use, you can’t go wrong with a dedicated second line.

With the Hushed Free 3 Day Trial option, why not get a free second phone number today and test out the app?  If you like it, you could always make it into your permanent virtual number!