Our Favorite Softphones for Mac and Windows (2020)


If you’re a small business or solopreneur and you’re using internet-powered devices to make calls, you’ve heard about softphones: software that looks like a smartphone’s dial pad with extra functionality but works on laptop/desktop with some softphones also having mobile apps.

For anyone who wants office-style functions minus the hardware, the perks of using a softphone really add up. All you need to make calls with a softphone is a VoIP provider (softphones aren’t standalone software/apps and won’t work without VoIP service) and if you’re going to be making a lot of calls, a headset that feels comfortable.

If you’re still undecided which VoIP service to subscribe to, jump to the final section where we talk about VoIP/softphone compatibility.

Otherwise, here are our picks of the 6 best softphones for Mac and Windows with a detailed look at features, user ratings, and pricing.

1. Linphone

linphone softphone for mac and windows

Screenshot via Linphone

  • Desktop client: Mac OS, Windows
  • Capterra rating: 4.2
  • Pricing: Free

Linphone softphone is part of Linphone’s ongoing opensource VoIP project. Like most desktop softphones, it works as a desktop dialer and connects to your VoIP provider of choice through a basic setup. If you’re using MightyCall VoIP, you can set up Linphone by following just a few steps.

What’s quite special about Linphone is that it’s open-source software so developers can modify and even rebrand it, or book those services from Linphone’s development team. IT businesses can learn more about Linphone licensing and services here. The only downside to this free softphone is the slowness of upgrades, including both tech and UI improvements.

Linphone softphone main features

✅ Audio calling

✅ Video calling

✅ Chat/messaging

✅ Call and chat history

✅ Call transfer

✅ Contacts

✅ Presence indicators

✅ File sharing

✅ Call recording

✅ Multiple accounts

✅ Mobile app (iOS, Android)

❌  Upgrade to pro version

2. Telephone 

telephone softphone for mac

Screenshot via 64 Characters

  • Desktop client: Mac OS
  • MacUpdate rating: 4.3
  • Pricing: Free version; Pro version ($1.99/month or $19.99/year)

Telephone is a desktop softphone for Mac OS that does what it says: makes/receives audio calls. Don’t look to Telephone for advanced softphone features like video conferencing, screen and file sharing, etc. But if you’re someone who appreciates minimalism and all you need is a no-hassle desktop calling client to make calls from your Mac, try it out.

Telephone offers the standard features of softphones in its free version, but now also offers Telephone Pro, a subscription service with a few additional features such as complete call history and the ability to make/receive up to 30 simultaneous calls.

Telephone softphone main features

✅  Audio calling

❌  Video calling

❌  Chat/messaging

✅ Contacts

✅ Call transfer

✅ Call history

✅ Call waiting; hold

✅ Multiple accounts

❌ CRM

❌ Call recording

❌  Mobile app

✅ Upgrade to pro version

3. 3CX Softphone 

3cx softphone for windows

Screenshot via 3CX

  • Desktop client: Windows
  • Capterra rating: 4.5
  • Pricing: Free version ($0 for up to 32 users with limitations [see below]) Pro version ($1.08 per user/month)

3CX softphone is a comprehensive solution for businesses in search of connectivity to their VoIP phone system from the comfort of desktop, browsers, and mobile devices.

The service runs both in the Cloud on all operating systems, but as desktop software on Windows only. Though 3CX used to offer MacOS desktop functionality, Mac users take note that MacOC development has been pulled as of 2020. However, 3CX softphone does offer a constantly developing web client and incredibly useful Chrome extensions that make it a great deal for Mac users.

The Pro version includes compatibility with Microsoft office, native CRM, plus features like call queues, call recording, and call reporting. On the other hand, a VoIP phone system like MightyCall already bundles those features into its functionality so there’s no need to pay twice.

3CX softphone main features

✅ Audio calls

✅ Video calls

✅ Messaging

✅ Presence indicators

✅ Contacts

✅ Call history

✅ Multiple accounts

🔐  Call recording (only Pro plan)

🔐  CRM (only Pro plan)

✅ Chrome extension

✅ Mobile App (iOS, Android)

✅ Upgrade to pro version

4. Bria softphones

bria phone for mac and windows

Screenshot via Counterpath

  • Desktop client: MacOS, Windows
  • Capterra rating: 4.3
  • Pricing: Bria Solo Free ($0); Bria Solo ($35/year), Bria Teams (starting from $59/year); Bria Enterprise (contact sales)

Bria (formerly X-Lite) is another softphone that’s compatible with most VoIP providers, including MightyCall. Bria offers four solutions for different-sized businesses or individuals. Bria Solo Free and Bria Solo are made for freelancers and solopreneurs, while Bria Teams is the solution for multiple users.

Admittedly, compared to its competitors Bria Solo Free does have quite limited functionality, but it’s the simple choice for anyone who needs basic software to make/receive calls from their laptops and mobile phones, with multi-device and multi-platform support, and a chance to upgrade later.

Bria softphone main features

✅ Audio calls

🔐 Video calls (not available on Bria Solo Free plan)

🔐 Messaging (only for Bria Teams)

🔐 Screen sharing (only Bria Teams)

✅ Contacts

✅ Call history

🔐  Presence indicators (only Bria Teams)

🔐  File sharing (only Bria Teams)

🔐  Call recording (only Bria Teams)

✅  Mobile App (iOS, Android)

✅ Upgrade to Pro version

5. ZoiPer 5 softphone

zoiper for mac and windows

Screenshot via ZoiPer

  • Desktop client: MacOS, Windows
  • Capterra rating: 4.4
  • Pricing: ZoiPer 5 Free ($0), ZoiPer 5 Pro ($58 one-time purchase price/per license)

ZoiPer is a softphone popular with small businesses. It is best known for high audio and video quality, fast technology, and powerful functionality on the pro plan.

ZoiPer’s newest product, ZoiPer 5, offers a free plan. But as the company itself suggests, this product is for personal rather than business use and offers no functionality beyond audio calls. ZoiPer’s free plan offers the most limited package of features amongst competitors, with nothing beyond voice calls supported (not even voicemail).

ZoiPer Pro generally has a very high satisfaction rating amongst business users and for a one-time purchase price offers the full-blown functionality of what its competitors offer on a subscription basis.

ZoiPer 5 softphone main features

✅ Voice calls

🔐 Video calls (Pro version)

🔐 Messaging (Pro version)

🔐 Presence indicator (Pro version)

🔐 Call forwarding (Pro version)

🔐 Call recording (Pro version)

🔐 Voicemail (Pro version)

🔐 CRM (Pro version)

🔐 Multiple accounts (Pro version)

✅  Mobile App (iOS, Android)

✅ Upgrade to Pro version

6. MicroSIP softphone

microsip softphone for windows

Screenshot via MicroSIP

  • Desktop client: Windows
  • Capterra rating: 3.8
  • Pricing: Free

MicroSIP softphone is another free, open-source softphone, presently available only for Windows OS users. One of its most attractive characteristics is the standard functionality of softphones bundles into the free format, and its lightweight presence on your hard drive (>2.5MB) and RAM usage (>5MB). MicroSIP is a good choice for business owners doing most of their calling in-office (whether that’s your home or not), since MicroSIP doesn’t currently have a mobile app.

MicroSIP softphone main features

✅  Voice calling

✅  Video calling

✅  Voicemail

✅  Call forwarding

✅  Messaging

✅  Contacts

✅  Presence indicators (if supported by SIP server)

✅  Call history

✅  Call recording

❌  Mobile app

❌  Upgrade to Pro version

VoIP/softphone compatibility

webphone mightycall

 

MightyCall’s built-in webphone. Screenshot via MightyCall.com

All of the softphones discussed above were designed for maximum compatibility with a variety of Voice over IP (VoIP) providers. However, we suggest to always confirm with your particular VoIP service whether the softphone of compatible with your service. Please do this before paying for subscriptions or buying any products.

MightyCall business VoIP is compatible with most standard softphones, including those we’ve just tackled. Here’s how to set up Linphone, Bria, 3CX, ZoiPer, and MicroSIP softphones with MightyCall.

Should you not want to pay anything extra for a softphone, MightyCall also has a built-in webphone and Mobile App. This means you can call straight from your browser or mobile phone without downloading a third-party softphone.

Learn more about MightyCall’s virtual phone system and why it’s exciting for small business!

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5000Unlimited Minutes

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$ 99.99/mo

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