eFax

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For other uses, see Efax (disambiguation).
eFax
Type Corporation
Services Internet-based fax
Parent j2 Global, Inc.
Website www.efax.com

eFax is an Internet fax service of j2 Global for sending and receiving of fax documents in digital format rather than a traditional paper fax machine.

Subscribers may obtain features such as digital signatures, mobile applications, and large file sharing with a paid subscription.[1] eFax's services have been integrated into some HP printer models[2] and offered as an app for Microsoft Office 2013.[3]

History[edit]

The first service branded as eFax was created by British-born entrepreneur Mark Oglesby in early 1997, providing a service to integrate email with existing fax technology. Separately, eFax (trading under the domain name efax.com) began as a service of JetFax, Inc., which in the 1980s and 1990s manufactured and sold JetFax fax machines.[4] JetFax was founded by Lon Radin and Rudy Prince in 1988 and was recognized by some as the first company to develop the laser fax machine, replacing the heat-treated fax machines prominent in the 1980s.[5]

On February 8, 1999, JetFax changed its name to eFax.com, Inc. and began to offer the eFax online fax service.[6] During the dot-com bubble, the company's stock shot up, but fell during the bust and it ran out of funds. In late 2000, eFax.com was acquired by rival JFAX, which had offered a similar electronic fax service. Upon the purchase, the company changed its name to j2 Global Communications, Inc.[7] and then in 2011 to j2 Global, Inc.[8]

In August 2010, Hewlett-Packard introduced a new line of printers incorporating the eFax service.[2][9]

On March 15, 2011, j2 Global, Inc. obtained a US trademark granting the company exclusive rights for use of the term "eFax" in connection with Internet faxing services.[10]

In August 2012, Microsoft introduced the eFax app for Microsoft Word 2013.[3]

As of 2014, eFax is increasingly being used by organizations such as colleges (over 1,000 schools).[11]

Products[edit]

In addition to basic online fax functionality, eFax allows for integration with email, phone, and cloud storage. Further features include keyword search, use of digital signatures, and encrypted fax.[12]

eFax has also developed smartphone apps for iPhone and Android which allow for direct faxing of photos and document scans taken from the mobile device.[12] Other app features include digital signature using fingerprint or picture, text editing, cover sheets, and PDF support.[13] The applications include paid features, but a free version is available with limited functionality.[14]

Packages[edit]

eFax offers multiple pricing models (eFax Plus and eFax Pro) for its online fax services, for individuals and businesses of different sizes and needs. It also offers multiple enterprise-level plans branded as eFax Corporate.[15]

Reception[edit]

Awards[edit]

eFax has received multiple Editors Choice awards from PC Magazine for its services and smartphone apps.[16][17] In September 2012, j2 Global appeared on the InformationWeek 500 list of technology companies.[18]

j2 Global's creative team has also won numerous Telly Awards for their work in promoting eFax and eVoice (a virtual phone service) in 2013[19] and 2014.[20]

Criticism[edit]

Some eFax users have reported that they were billed even after they cancelled their accounts and that they were not issued a refund.[21][better reference needed] Another complaint involves geographic U.S. eFax telephone numbers not being subject to FCC porting requirements.[22] Other companies acquired by j2 Global (such as Onebox) have been the target of similar complaints, ranging from number portability to issues with its contract providing no refunds on early termination.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Premium Features That Go Beyond Fax.". eFax. Retrieved 2 July 2012. 
  2. ^ a b "eFax Wireless Faxing Featured in New HP All-in-One Printer". TMC Net. Retrieved 10 August 2012. 
  3. ^ a b "Fax Directly from Word 2013 with eFax App". PC World. Retrieved 10 August 2012. 
  4. ^ Taylor, Dennis (19 April 1998). "Firm jets to a win with just the fax". Silicon Valley / San Jose Business Journal. Retrieved 2 July 2012. 
  5. ^ Page, Heather (1 March 1999). "High Hopes". Entrepreneur. Retrieved 15 August 2014. 
  6. ^ Form 8-K, Securities and Exchange Commission
  7. ^ "JFAX.COM Evolves to Become j2 Global Communications; Company is Launching New Business Services, New Website, and New Name". j2 Global. 10 August 2000. Retrieved 23 November 2013. 
  8. ^ "j2 Global Communications, Inc. Becomes j2 Global, Inc.". j2 Global. 7 December 2011. Retrieved 23 November 2013. 
  9. ^ "HP All-in-One Printers". Hewlett-Packard. Retrieved 10 August 2012. 
  10. ^ "eFax Trademark". United States Patent and Trademark Office. Retrieved 15 August 2014. 
  11. ^ "National Signing Day 2014: Like at Rutgers, fax machines still being used, though not many know why". NJ.com. 5 February 2014. Retrieved 1 April 2014. 
  12. ^ a b "Premium Features That Go Beyond Fax". eFax. Retrieved 26 February 2014. 
  13. ^ "eFax - Mobile phone fax app". iTunes App Store. Retrieved 26 February 2014. 
  14. ^ LaFollette, Angela (6 February 2014). "eFax Review". 148Apps. Retrieved 1 April 2014. 
  15. ^ "Business Fax Plans". eFax. Retrieved 26 February 2014. 
  16. ^ Wilson, Jeffrey L. "eFax (Spring 2011)". PC Magazine. Retrieved 2 March 2014. 
  17. ^ Wilson, Jeffrey L. "eFax (for Android)". PC Magazine. Retrieved 1 April 2014. 
  18. ^ Schuchman, Winnie Ng (12 September 2012). "j2 Global, Inc. Once Again Ranked Among Top Technology Innovators by InformationWeek". Yahoo Finance. Retrieved 2 March 2014. 
  19. ^ Threlkeld, Bill (11 April 2013). "j2 Global's Creative Team Continues Winning Streak With Two Prestigious Telly Awards". Yahoo! Finance. Retrieved 26 February 2014. 
  20. ^ "j2 Cloud Services® Wins Three More Telly® Awards for Its Creative Work". Yahoo! Finance. 14 July 2014. Retrieved 31 August 2014. 
  21. ^ "BBB Business Review - j2 Global, Inc". Better Business Bureau. Retrieved 2 March 2014. 
  22. ^ "eFax Customer Agreement". Retrieved 10 December 2013. 

External links[edit]