The Complete Guide to Adding a Second Phone Number to a Cell Phone

adding a second phone number to a cell phone

Buying two phones is an unnecessary and ridiculous expense. If you need to add a phone line, your best option is to add a second number to an existing phone.

There is an unlimited number of reasons why you might need to do this. Maybe you need to separate your private calls. More likely, you might need another number for business purposes.

Either way, the task of adding another number to your cell phone can be daunting. If you’re thinking of adding a second phone number to a cell phone, here are the things you need to know before you get started.

Apps for Adding a Second Phone Number to a Cell Phone

The first thing you need to know is that you don’t need to register another number with your service provider. You don’t need to switch service providers, either. To add a phone line, all you have to do is download an app.

There are dozens of options to pick from, so narrowing your selection can be a little tricky. We’re here to help with that.

Best Functionality: iPlum

If you want the best functionality possible, try this second phone line app. With over 23 language options and integrations with Android and iOS smartphones, tablets, and Chromebooks, iPlum has everything a business line needs without the need of getting or setting up another device.

You can set business hours to prevent calls from reaching you when you’re off the clock. You can also set up an automated virtual assistant to direct callers to your voicemail when you aren’t available. Other great features include call recording, which is excellent for customer service purposes, call forwarding, and secure texting.

That said, there are some cons. iPlum is only available for users who are native to Canada and the U.S. You can use the app in almost every country in the world, but you can’t register a number from anywhere outside of North America.

There’s also the matter of cost. While cheap, iPlum isn’t a free service. Second phone line packages start at $4.99 a month for basic text and call functionality. The more services you add, the more expensive it gets.

Totally Free: Google Voice

If you don’t need a ton of features and you’d prefer a service that’s completely free, we recommend using Google Voice. You can download Google Voice to almost any phone or computer. The only thing you need is a Google account.

Just bear in mind that Google Voice is a much leaner alternative to most second phone apps. You can block and forward calls in Google Voice, and you can set up a proprietary contacts list, but that’s it.

Also, while you can technically download Google Voice to your tablet, it’s been known to act a little buggy. If you use your tablet more than your other devices, Google Voice might not be ideal.

Choose Your Area Code Wisely

All second phone line apps allow you to set an area code to attach to your new number. By default, they select either the area code you’re currently located in or the area code your other accounts are linked to.

However, you have the option to pick a different area code altogether. This is great for adding further distance between your primary phone number and your extra one.

If you’re using your second line for business purposes, though, you need to be careful that you aren’t sending the wrong message. If you conduct most of your business in New York but you have a Utah area code, customers may become confused or distrustful of your services.

Another option is to set a toll free number for your second line. This option is usually available on paid phone line apps, not free ones. It’s worth the cost, though, as it avoids the hassle of making you decide which area code to use.

Separate Your Voicemails

During the setup phase, you should create a second voicemail for your added phone line. This is especially important if you have a cute or silly voicemail on your personal line.

To create some additional distance between your personal and work life (or whatever else you may be using a second phone line for), make a new voicemail with a professional feel. Paid apps allow you to enlist the help of a virtual automated assistant to do this for you. In Google Voice and other free apps, you’ll have to settle for using your best customer service voice.

Import Your Contacts

If you’re using a second phone line primarily on your cell phone, it should automatically sync your contacts to the new number. This is true even for free apps.

However, the app may not differentiate between your personal contacts, business contacts, or other contacts. Likewise, if you prefer to use your computer or tablet for the second number, you may not be able to import or sync contacts at all.

In these cases, it’s important to sort through your contacts before you get started and label them accordingly. Android devices let users create their own labels or pick from existing ones like family, friends, and coworkers. Once you’ve labeled all of your contacts, your second line app will find it much easier to sort everything for you.

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