Fax machine vs online fax service: who wins?

Traditional fax machines have been around for years, with the first recognisable version of what we consider the fax machine invented in 1964 by Xerox.

Although many may now see the fax machine as archaic technology, fax machines remain a vital communications tool for thousands of organisations across Australia. In fact, we at GoFax process millions of fax messages every month for organisations in regulated industries including healthcare, legal, finance and government.

Even so, with the advancements of today’s technology, the fax machine has been superseded by online fax services, offering the same messaging capabilities as a physical fax machine in a more secure and reliable online environment. Fax machines are seen as error prone, costly and inefficient, especially for organisations and users now required to work remotely due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

For some, transitioning away from using traditional fax machines is a struggle, with many users finding comfort in the familiarity of standing over the machine and sending a paper fax through manually. However, online fax services allow for streamlined business workflows, improving efficiencies and processes – providing more time to focus on other tasks, rather than administrative duties.

It’s time to move away from traditional fax machine use to an online fax service, providing businesses with a simple, mobile and cost-effective alternative. So when it comes to traditional fax machines vs an online fax service who wins? We go through the differences between the two below.

Start Faxing Online With GoFax

The differences between a fax machine and an online fax service


Fax machine

Online fax service


Although fax machines are run on a peer-to-peer network through a physical phone line, they require manual data handling and face security and confidentiality vulnerabilities after delivery. Once a fax is sent, there is no verification that it has been received.

GoFax provides multiple security measures to protect sensitive data when being transmitted through its online fax service. This includes data encryptions, managed firewalls, data sovereignty and auto delete options. Learn more about GoFax’s security measures on our website.


No tools, audit trail or reporting available. Each sent and received fax must be recorded manually. 

Comprehensive reporting tools available with the ability to view sent and received faxes in real-time through the GoFax dashboard.


Faxes sent through a fax machine are seen as legally binding documents. However, due to their security flaws and inability to verify successfully received fax documents fax machines are being replaced with online fax services for compliance across many industries.

GoFax is 100% HIPAA compliant and government accredited, allowing your organisation to meet industry regulations and compliance across your fax communications. Learn more about GoFax compliance measures on our website.


Fax machines are only compatible with hardcopy paper documents. You need to send each page individually.

Easily upload fax documents to GoFax in multiple file formats, including PDF, DOC/DOCX, JPG, PNG and more.


Fax machines are immobile and require the user to stand over the machine to send and receive faxes.

GoFax users can send and receive faxes through any device with an internet connection, providing you with the ability to send and receive faxes while at home, office or while on-the-go without requiring a fax machine.

Data Management

Using a fax machine requires manual file handling and storage, with the chance to lose sensitive information due to human error.

Any sent and received faxes through GoFax are stored on the cloud via AES 256bit encryption with lifetime storage, providing a comprehensive downloadable history and audit trail for organisational compliance and data management.


Not only is the fax machine itself expensive, but you also have to pay for regular fax machine maintenance, paper, ink, toner, associated electricity costs and any breakdown repairs.

GoFax provides flexible pricing options for all types of organisations with no hidden fees or lock-in contracts.


Although a traditional fax machine is easy to use for many, it requires manual input. You have to know how to operate the machine to be able to use it.

An online fax service like GoFax is extremely easy to use and has multiple channels available to send and receive faxes, including via the secure web portal, email to fax, GoFax app and API integration.


Fax machines only allow you to send one fax at a time. To be able to send or receive multiple faxes, you need more than one fax machine.

Multiple users means multiple fax transmissions, all at the same time. GoFax also has a fax broadcast feature, allowing fax documents to be sent to thousands of recipients at the same time.


Fax transmission may take up to 1 minute per page, assuming there is a clear connection with no busy signals between both fax machines.

Transmitting a fax via GoFax takes under a minute, with multiple pages able to be faxed at the same time.

Environmental Friendliness

Fax machines aid deforestation, waste generation due to paper, ink and toner use and are overall bad for the environment.

Support the environment and reduce your carbon footprint by using an online fax service. Send your faxes with no paper, ink, toner use and no greenhouse gas emissions.


Have you ever tried to find a fax machine repairman? There isn’t much support available if your fax machine breaks down or experiences any technical issues.

Our Australian-based support team are here to help if you have any questions or queries. Contactable via phone, email or live chat with priority 24/7 support available.


Are you ready to ditch the fax machine?

With the ability to send and receive faxes from anywhere at any time via a secure and reliable online fax service, there’s no better time like the present to ditch your fax machine and start sending faxes the easy way. Get started today with a free GoFax account, or give our team a call on 1300 982 872 for a demonstration on the GoFax platform. 

Start Faxing Online With GoFax