VoIP, or Voice over Internet Protocol, is a crucial part of your business operations to get right if your team makes a lot of phone calls or you run a call center.
What is VoIP? VoIP technology allows you to make calls with an internet connection rather than a typical telephone line. You don’t even need a phone to make a call with VoIP – all you need is a VoIP app on your computer.
In our roundup of VoIP trends for 2020, we mentioned that a growing number of small businesses are adopting VoIP technologies to run their call centers and interact with customers.
- When to choose RingCentral
- When to choose Aircall
- Feature comparison
- Set up
- Ease of use
- Contact management
- Mobile apps
- Reporting & metrics
- Pricing comparison
- Support comparison
- Summary: When to choose RingCentral vs. Aircall
When to choose RingCentral
RingCentral has been on the block since 1999 and it’s one of the most recognizable brands in VoIP. We recommend checking out their product and starting a free trial if...
1. You want built-in video conferencing
Aircall doesn't currently offer built-in video conferencing, which is one area where RingCentral jumps ahead if this is important to your business.
2. You want access to more features
Alongside video conferencing, RingCentral builds in a lot of other features. RingCentral Meeting add-ons include webinars and large meetings functionality, so those are two other boxes you can tick with the one tool.
Based on Google Play and App Store reviews, RingCentral also has more user-friendly mobile apps than Aircall at the time of writing.
3. You’re on a tighter budget
RingCentral tends to be a cheaper alternative to Aircall, but be wary of getting locked into a long-term contract if you haven’t had time to test the software properly.
When to choose Aircall
Founded in 2014 in a startup studio in Paris, Aircall's founders attended the 500 Startups accelerator program in San Francisco in 2015 and announced an $8 million Series A funding round the following year.
Aircall now has a team of beyond 200 employees across Paris and New York. Their VoIP product is likely to be a good choice for your business if…
1. You want faster set-up
Aircall promises a quick and easy set-up, and in our testing of the app, we believe them. We got set up with an account in a couple of minutes and loved the set-up process.
2. You want one-click integrations
Another reason to love Aircall is its brilliant range of integrations. These really are one-click as their marketing materials claim.
3. You want simplicity
Aircall has a smoother interface than RingCentral and more of a modern feel to its user interface. This simplicity comes across beautifully in their set-up workflow in particular. Overall, it can be quicker to get things done with Aircall than RingCentral because of its UX.
Feature comparison of Aircall and RingCentral
Setting up Aircall
Aircall prides itself on its quick set up, and for good reason. We love Aircall's quick set up, which took less than five minutes with room to make a cup of tea.
After answering a few non-pushy questions and setting a password, you're taken to a 3-step set-up wizard where you create your first Aircall number, make a test call and download the desktop calling app. It's incredibly simple and nudges Aircall ahead of RingCentral.
Setting up RingCentral
With RingCentral, the set-up process is more lenghty: you choose your free phone number, choose your plan and number of users, and have to give your card details to start the free trial. That's followed by more questions for company info and your info.
Once you're finally in RingCentral, you can complete tutorials to complete key steps, like changing what callers hear when they ring your business, setting up call forwarding, and using call queues.
Ease of use
Aircall's ease of use
Aircall has a clean and simple user interface which makes it incredibly easy to use. In the desktop app, it's easy to navigate between the main tabs – To-do, History, Keypad and People – and make calls. Some users complain of calls dropping out occasionally, however.
RingCentral's ease of use
RingCentral offers more features and options in the app, which is a good thing for many businesses but can result in a more overwhelming interface than Aircall offers.
An advantage of RingCentral is that you can call directly from your browser (in comparison, Aircall directs you to call via the desktop app that you download during set-up.)
Contacts in Aircall
To view your contacts in Aircall, simply open the desktop or mobile app, click on the People tab, and view all your contacts. There’s a separate section for teammates, for easy internal dialing.
It's super simple to search for a contact and minimize time spent searching for the right person, especially if you have two-way contact data syncing set up between all of your key tools.
The user-friendly dialler also makes it easy to search for a contact or input a new number:
Contacts in RingCentral
To see your contacts in RingCentral, make sure you're in the "My extension" panel, click on Contacts, and quickly search for the person you're looking for. There's also a separate tab for "Personal" where you can store other numbers, such as colleagues you need to be able to reach quickly.
If you're using a VoIP provider, chances are you won't always be making calls in your office on your computer. Most users also want to make calls on the go and have easy access to their contacts list.
Both RingCentral and Aircall offer a mobile app, but user opinions vary and RingCentral is currently ahead of Aircall here.
In the Google Play store, RingCentral wins. Android users rate Aircall’s app 3/5 based on 148 reviews and RingCentral’s main app 4/5 based on 2,231 reviews.
In the App Store, Aircall also has a lot of work to do to catch up with RingCentral. iOS users rate Aircall’s app 1.7/5 based on 9 ratings and RingCentral’s main app 4.2/5 based on 52 ratings.
As Aircall shares in their extensive App Marketplace, their product talks to all of your critical tools and workflows – from CRMs like HubSpot and Copper to helpdesks like Zendesk and Help Scout. There are also some interesting integrations for AI & call transcription (like Avoma and ExecVision) and quality assurance (Klaus) to rate your agent's call activity. You can also check out Aircall's public API.
RingCentral also has a great range of integrations. The product integrates seamlessly with Google and Microsoft software suites among many other of your key apps. You can also use the RingCentral Connect Platform family of cloud APIs and SDKs to make your own customized integrations.
Get deeper integrations with both tools
As well as integrations provided by Aircall and RingCentral, two-way data syncing can take these connections further. It's also your solution if you need to ensure contact data is passed bi-directionally between RingCentral or Aircall to your key apps, like Mailchimp, Xero or Contacts+.
Reporting & metrics
As soon as we set up Aircall, we could see statistics and reporting for our test calls. Aircall's reports are broken down into Activity, Customer Service and Productivity, which gives you a handy oversight of how your team is performing.
Like most other things in Aircall, the analytics tab is simple and minimal. This is great for most teams, but some enterprise-level businesses may prefer to have more reporting and data options.
RingCentral's Analytics Portal gives you valuable insights into performance, quality of service and much more. This is easy to navigate, intuitive and gives you a ton of data that you can share with your stakeholders.
To view analytics in RingCentral, you need to switch to the Admin Panel and click on Analytics. You can then see options to view:
- Adoptions & Usage
- Company Numbers
- Meetings Dashboard
- Performance Reports
- Quality of Service
At first glance, RingCentral works out cheaper than Aircall. For its most basic plan, Office Standard, it's $24.99/user/month compared to Aircall's $30/user/month for its Essentials plan (both billed annually).
But is RingCentral always cheaper than Aircall? Usually, yes – both its Office Premium and Office Ultimate plans are cheaper than Aircall's Professional $50/user month plan. Because of taxes, Aircall can also be more cost-efficient if you're in Europe than North America.
However, be wary of getting locked into an annual or multi-year plan. Consider paying a slightly more expensive monthly subscription for a couple of months while you get set up and make sure you've found the right VoIP provider for your business.
Comparing RingCentral vs. Aircall support
While RingCentral includes 24/7 support with all plans, Aircall gates premium support features behind their higher plans. However, this can be a good thing for higher-paying users who benefit from the VIP hotline, account manager and SLA. Aircall is generally a better choice for enterprise-level clients that need this dedicated support.
Aircall’s contact page includes a transparent support contact email, sales email and live chat. You can also reach RingCentral via live chat, but Aircall tends to prioritize fast and high-quality support the highest out of the two VoIP providers.
Summary: When to choose Aircall vs. RingCentral
|When to choose Aircall||When to choose RingCentral|
|You want faster set-up||You want built-in video conferencing|
|You want one-click integrations||You want access to more features|
|You want simplicity||You're on a tighter budget|
Whichever VoIP software you end up going with, one of your most important considerations is how well it will fit with the rest of your tech stack.
To make sure that your contact data is instantly updated across all apps when something changes, connect your apps with PieSync. Both RingCentral and Aircall can connect seamlessly with hundreds of other tools to ensure that your data is always up-to-date, free of duplicates and reliable.