Ultimate Comparison To Help You Choose – Machine or Digital?


It doesn’t matter if we want it to happen or not, technology keeps on advancing and it becomes more important to keep up with it. It can be what separates success and failure within a business. For example, the technology of faxing documents began as an experiment.

When it came to the fax machine, there were many predictions that stated it would not last, or even take off. Now it is very accommodating and has become a popular communication tool. With the evolution of technology, digital devices can even be used to send a fax. This increases the speed at which one can send or receive a fax, and it’s also economical because it lowers expenses compared to using a physical fax machine.

Below we will be going over the various differences in using the traditional method versus using the new online services. Please feel free to add any opinions in the comment area below.

Sending Process

Via Machine:

This method was all the rage when it first came out, trying to figure out the machine would snatch up the paper, scan it and save it as a photo, then magically send it to the receiver in another location. However, the process took up a bunch of time and it required a bunch of buttons to get sent.

However, the process was no trouble compared to dealing with paper jams, or having to change out the ink right in the middle of sending out an important document. The issues could be quite frustrating.

Via Email:

Put the machine down, with today’s technology it is all focused around the digital world. The digital solution had a slow start, but it provides people with more options when it comes to sending their documents, and you avoid the machine. With digital faxing, it can be as simple as sending out an email, using an online dashboard or even an app on your phone.

You are no longer restricted to sending directly to a land line number either, you can send to various locations, including multiple recipients, schedule your document to send at a certain time and even integrate with different cloud services. You will end up reducing your cost, and saving time.

Receiving Process

Via Machine:

In order to receive your fax, you would have to be at the location of the receiving machine, or have one of your own. The machine required a dedicated line just for the fax machine, and many supplies for high usage. When it first came out, it was very useful, but when compared against the digital technology we have today, it’s very slow and out dated.

Via Email:

Right away this method makes things easier as you won’t have to physically be at any certain machine’s location. You won’t need all of the supplies, or worry about paper jams, and so on. The machine is replaced with a computer or mobile device, the landline is replaced with digital numbers, which are automatically activated upon registering with the service. More number options are available for both toll free and local, even vanity numbers are an option.

You will receive the faxes as a PDF right in your inbox, from there you can open or organize it as you wish. You can access them via computer or mobile, which gives you the freedom of being anywhere, and printing only what you need to which saves on paper usage. You could even consider this online solution as a way for the office to go green!

Document Quality


Although useful, a physical machine was far from perfect or high quality all the time when transmitting. The machine would copy a document in black and white, and the received document was not always quality. This could have been the machine wearing out over time, or a fault in the machine it’s self, or it could even be an issue on the receiving machine.

Usually black and white quality was decent, however had you needed to fax an image that was in color, you didn’t have any other options.


With the digital age upon us, faxes can now be sent and received with high quality and perfect clarity. It’s not required to first scan the document, unless a hard copy is all you have. You simply choose the file you need to send over from your mobile device or computer. The received file will be in the same quality as it was sent in, and you even have the option of it being in color.

Depending on how the fax is sent out, the received fax could even have a better quality, this is a 50% chance. To add more options, it is even compatible with physical machines, but the quality issues of the machine are still there. For the sake of quality, saving time and cost, many businesses are converting to digital services.


With a Machine:

None, with a fax machine you had to have a stationary spot for it in an office, or have someone who would receive the documents when not around. When the first fax machines was designed, mobile technology was not around. This made it acceptable as people was not walking around with a mobile device and needing it on the go.

With Email:

The digital age brought around the portable technology. First starting out, these services would allow an instant message or notification to be sent to a mobile phone when receiving a new fax. Now a days, thanks to the evolution of technology, the mobile apps allow us to use our mobile devices as a portable fax machine as well, sending, receiving and even sign and composing new documents on the go. These apps are available across various platforms, such as Android, iPhone and Blackberry.

By having an account with an email faxing service, you can use your mobile device to easily convert into a fax machine for free. This is not the only option, if you don’t want a monthly subscription, you can use apps with in-app purchasing.

While the online services are beneficial, there are still some areas that could be improved. At this point, there are only a few services that provide integrated mobile solutions. This is something that is being worked on, and should see more in the near future.

Still Using The Traditional Method?

The old fax machine as you can tell was a great stepping stone in the history of technology, it was beneficial and back then the fastest way to move a document from one location to the next. However, we have to move forward and evolve with technology if we plan to keep up. Faxing it’s self is not dead, only transformed into an improved version with more freedom.

Thousands of businesses are still using faxes regularly, and still use an outdated machine. These businesses could really benefit with the digital technology of email faxing. Why not at least give it a try as it will save you time and money? With the many service options, some allow you to test it out for a per-determined amount of time at no cost. This would allow you to explore the possibilities of email faxing first hand.