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Best cordless phones

Looking for the best cordless phones for your needs? These products are still in demand, despite the ubiquity of cell phones. If you are looking for this product, Consumer Reports is your best resource for research. We provide unbiased buying advice about and independent, expert reviews you can trust. We’ve lab-tested more than 70 different models, including those that have multiple handsets and built-in answerers. Before you go out to shop, read our reviews to narrow down the models that are optimal for your needs.

See more about best cordless phones.

Our expert lab technicians evaluated and scored cordless phones on each of the following characteristics to find the top in each category:

  • Voice quality: Includes listening quality, which reflects what you hear, and talking, which reflects what's heard on the receiving end.

  • Ease of use: Covers handset weight and comfort, talk time, ease of setup and use, readability of labels, and other convenience factors.

  • Range: Reflects the tested distance a phone can maintain an intelligible conversation, make a call, and receive a call.

  • Message quality: Reflects the judgment of an expert panel listening to playback of a message.

  • Answerer ease of use: Covers ease of setup and use; adequate labeling, size and location of buttons and controls; and other convenience factors.

  • Recording time: Measurement, to the nearest minute, of total recording time using continuous speech.

  • Overall score: Out of 100 points, reflects all the Ratings factors, with emphasis on voice quality, ease of use, talk time, and range.

Below is a list of the best cordless phones in each of the tests our experts performed. Take a look at our buying guide to discover all you should know before selecting the best cordless phone for your needs.

Best cordless phones

  • Best cordless phone for overall score
    This score is based primarily on voice quality, ease of use, talk time, and range. For phones with an answering machine, overall score also includes mainly the message voice quality, answerer ease of use, and recording time. The displayed score is out of a total of 100 points. Phones are listed in performance order, within categories. Due to test upgrades, results may vary from past Ratings.
    This cordless phone which tested best for Overall score has the following features: LCD screen, Two-line support, Speakerphone, Base keypad, Headset jack, Auto-talk, Battery backup, Multiple handsets, Caller ID, Mailboxes and Advanced playback controls.
  • Best cordless phone for voice quality
    Voice quality considers listening quality which reflects what you hear and talking, what's heard by other phones. Tests were conducted in a quiet environment.
    This cordless phone which tested best for Voice quality has the following features: LCD screen, Two-line support, Speakerphone, Base keypad, Headset jack, Auto-talk, Battery backup, Multiple handsets, Caller ID, Mailboxes and Advanced playback controls.
  • Best cordless phone for phone ease of use
    This score mainly covers handset weight and comfort, talk time, ease of phone setup and use, readability of labels; accessibility, location, and size of controls and buttons; and other convenience factors, such as auto talk, any key answer, lighted keypad, one-touch dial, and others.
    This cordless phone which tested best for Phone ease of use has the following features: LCD screen, Two-line support, Speakerphone, Base keypad, Headset jack, Auto-talk, Battery backup, Multiple handsets, Caller ID, Mailboxes and Advanced playback controls.
  • Best cordless phone for range
    This score reflects the tested distance a phone can maintain an intelligible conversation, make a call and receive a call. We report a score instead of a distance because range can differ greatly due to variables such as phone base location, home size, room configuration, construction materials, multiple stories, wiring and other electrical and physical interferences. A low scoring phone is more likely to have some connection problems at short distances such as between different floors in a house or when going outside the house while a high scoring phone is less likely to have connection problems and can typically keep a clean signal in all but the largest of homes or when you go outside your home.
    This cordless phone which tested best for Range has the following features: LCD screen, Two-line support, Speakerphone, Base keypad, Headset jack, Auto-talk, Battery backup, Multiple handsets, Caller ID, Mailboxes and Advanced playback controls.
  • Best cordless phone for message quality
    This score reflects the judgment of an expert jury listening to playback of a message recorded from a corded phone of high-quality voice recordings in a quiet, acoustic environment.
    This cordless phone which tested best for Message quality has the following features: LCD screen, Two-line support, Speakerphone, Base keypad, Headset jack, Auto-talk, Battery backup, Multiple handsets, Caller ID, Mailboxes and Advanced playback controls.

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