SIPSTACK offers a range of phone number types that differ in their costs and capabilities. The details of each of the options are listed below:
Local numbers are telephone numbers which are assigned to a specific geographic region. These numbers are typically used by individuals and local businesses. In Canada and US, these regions are represented by area codes. For example, +1 (416) XXX-XXXX numbers are located in the Toronto area.
Outside Canada and US, phone numbers are mapped in ranges to a specific region. Ranges can vary in length between 1 and up to 6 digits of the phone number. For example, a +44 20 XXXX XXXX number is located in London, UK while a +44 151 XXX XXX number is located in Liverpool, UK.
National numbers are telephone numbers which are not region-specific, and were designed to be reachable from an entire country at the same cost. This type of number is more common outside Canada and US, and is commonly used for larger businesses that want to easily be reached from around the country. Since national phone numbers are not tied to a particular local area, the geo-data for a national number is listed as the country.
The cost for your user to call a national number is often regulated and priced the same as a local call. However, this varies based on the carrier initiating the call (i.e. the mobile carrier of the incoming caller, or the provider of the user’s local phone service) and the regulations of each country. In some countries, national numbers can only be reached from within the country, although this varies based on the network of the phone provider and country from which a national number is being dialed.
Toll-free numbers are telephone numbers that are free of charge for the calling party, and are typically used by businesses when they prefer to fully take on the cost of calls for their users. Similar to a geographic area code, toll free numbers are organized in ranges such as +1 888 XXX-XXXX in Canada and US and +44 800 XXX XXXX in the UK. SIPSTACK currently provides toll free numbers in Canada and US. Toll-free numbers in both Canada and US are enabled for both voice and text messaging.
In most countries, mobile numbers are assigned to a particular range within the country’s telephone numbering plan so they can be easily distinguished from local numbers. They are often the only type of number in the given country that can be used for sending and receiving messages. This is not the case in Canada and US. In Canada and US, most mobile numbers cannot be distinguished from local numbers.