We've likely all been there: You need to send a quick one- or two-page document to someone insisting the message arrive via fax, yet you no longer have access to a fax machine, and you may have let a fax-to-email service subscription expire. Thankfully, it's easy to send a fax using just an iPhone. Here's how.
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First, download a faxing app. Alexey Bogdanov's free Fax from iPhone app has over 11,000 ratings, most of which are five-star reviews.
Second, purchase credits. Expect to pay about $0.40 to $0.80 a page, depending upon how many credits you're willing to purchase upfront. Fax from iPhone, for example, offers 250 credits for $9.99, 100 credits for $5.99, or 50 credits for $3.99. A single page costs 10 credits to send.
Using the credits method, payment is processed using your Apple iTunes account. As far as total expense, faxing a page or two approximates the cost of a stamp, but faxing is much easier than having to find an envelope, address the envelope, purchase a stamp, put the stamp on the envelope, find a mailbox, mail the envelope, and then wait two or three days for the message to arrive. Thus, even though faxing has largely been replaced by email, secure online file-sharing, and encrypted email, faxing still has its place in many businesses.
Third, scan your document, if necessary. For example, use Notes to scan the document page or pages you need to send. Then transfer the note to iCloud by saving the note to Files and selecting iCloud.
You can also import the document using Fax from iPhone from other apps that support the iOS Open In feature. To import a document from an app that supports the Open In feature, follow these steps.
- Open the app containing the document you wish to fax.
- Select the document you wish to fax.
- Tap the Open In button.
- Select the Fax app.
- The Fax app will import the document.
Fourth, to send the fax, follow these steps.
- Open the Fax app.
- Click the blue Add Image Or Document button.
- Enter the fax number to which the fax should be sent in the Send To field.
- Tap the Send button.
The Fax from iPhone app permits faxing from an iPhone in more than 50 countries. The app also allows users to combine multiple documents into a single fax message, preview faxes before they are sent, and send a wide range of files (including PDFs, documents, JPGs, and more) using a variety of document sources (including Box, Dropbox, iCloud, and Google Drive).
SEE: iOS 11 tips and tricks for business professionals (free PDF) (TechRepublic)
While you likely don't want to use the app to scan and send faxes for lots of pages, the app is an easy and low-cost method of forwarding those one- and two-page agreements and files that I seem to encounter a half-dozen times a year and for which faxing from an iPhone excels.
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Erik Eckel owns and operates two technology companies. As a managing partner with Louisville Geek, he works daily as an IT consultant to assist small businesses in overcoming technology challenges and maximizing IT investments. He is also president of Eckel Media Corp., a communications company specializing in public relations and technical authoring projects.