The 8 Best Multi Line Phones
This wiki has been updated 26 times since it was first published in December of 2017. While home landlines are on the decline, the usefulness of these multi-line phones is on the rise, since some not only connect to traditional telephone lines, but also to smartphones via Bluetooth and to VoIP services. Thanks to these capabilities, they offer a cost-effective way to pull all your communications together, whether for a busy home office or a small business. When users buy our independently chosen editorial recommendations, we may earn commissions to help fund the Wiki.
June 12, 2020:
There are a few things that make for a good multi-line phone, and a lot of those have to do with the integration of modern technologies. To that end, we removed some of the older models that offered feature sets limited to landline-only use. There are options on this list, like the AT&T Connect To Cell, for example, that can provide audible alerts when you get important emails or texts. That can actually help you if you need to focus on the task at hand by allowing you to keep your smartphone out of arm's reach and remove the temptation to spend screen time when you need to be working.
Of course, that's something that's a little more useful for a home office environment than for a small business. A lot of businesses today turn to VoIP services that offer features like dedicated extensions and mailboxes for each line or the ability to use your computer or smartphone for setup and maintenance. If you look carefully at our list, however, you'll see that a lot of these models offer some or all of those features, like the Mitel Aastra 6867I, which can interface with an optional keyboard or the Obihai Gigabit IP, which can be configured from a web browser when the base unit is connected to your Wi-Fi network. And the VTech Expandable System actually offers a digital attendant that can guide callers through a menu system to send them to the right extension.
You'll also want to think about those extensions, as well. Some models, like the AT&T Dect 6.0 Bundle, come with a small handful of handsets, allowing multiple employees or family members to access the lines. There are caps on how many extension stations a system can handle, however, with models like that AT&T set expanding to as many as 12 units, or the Obihai that can double that with a maximum of 24.