Talkspace Review (2021) – Best Comprehensive Review

8 min read

In this Talkspace review, you’ll discover how effective this mobile app is for delivering online therapy.

It’s one of the most popular therapy apps around – but does it offer the best value? 

Read on to discover how it works, the key features and how it compares to other therapy apps.

Let’s dive right into it.

Talkspace: Overview

The Talkspace app – available on iOS and Android – allows you to connect with a licensed therapist through text and video calls. The live chat text service is also available on its desktop website. 

It was founded by Oren and Roni Frank as a group therapy platform, eventually evolving into a service that pairs its users with qualified therapists.

To access its services, you must sign up to a monthly subscription.

There are three price tiers to choose from:

  • Unlimited messaging therapy – $260 per month.
  • Unlimited messaging therapy, plus one video call – $316 per month. 
  • Unlimited messaging therapy with four video calls – $396 per month. 

You’ll be able to secure a 10% discount if you pay upfront for three months, or a 20% discount if you pay for a six-month plan.

(Note: Around the Talkspace website, the service is advertised as costing “from $65 per week”. However, weekly payments aren’t available. You’ll either pay monthly, quarterly or bi-annually). 

“Unlimited messaging” refers to live text chat. Although you can send an unlimited number of messages on this plan, you should only expect your therapist to reply once or twice per day.

Talkspace video calls last 30 minutes and will have to be organised with your therapist in advance. On any plan, you can pay $65 for an additional one-off video call.      

Talkspace is packed with qualified licenced therapists, and you can swap yours whenever you feel like it.

The app provides a high-quality video therapy service, although it’s not the cheapest on the market. 

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With that said, at this time of this review, Talkspace was advertising a $100 discount voucher on the header of its website.

It may also be possible that your health insurance provider will cover the cost of Talkspace. This depends on your insurer and your personal situation. In many cases, the price of the co-pay will cost more than several months of Talkspace therapy. 

KEY FEATURES

PROS
🟢 ‘Unlimited’ live chat on desktop and mobile. 
🟢 Thousands of therapists to choose from.
🟢 Swap therapists whenever you like.
🟢 Good customer service.
CONS
🔺 Expensive compared to its competitors.
🔺 Video calls available on mobile only.

Is Online Therapy A Good Option For You? What To Consider Before Getting Started With Talkspace 

Thousands of people have been able to improve their mental health problems through online therapy. 

It costs less than face-to-face therapy – and has proved to be a godsend for thousands of low-income individuals. 

However, I would highly recommend that you opt for video therapy rather than just text messaging. 

Video calls allow your discussions to progress at a quicker pace, as you don’t have to wait for each other to construct a reply. 

More importantly, video calls allow you to build a stronger rapport and pick up on the sub-communications of each other’s body language, facial expressions and voice tonality. A great therapist will be able to learn about the nuances of your situation a lot faster when communicating via video.    

In-person therapy can be even more effective for this reason. However, as video calling software becomes more powerful, the quality gap between video therapy and in-person therapy continues to decrease.

It’s important to know that therapists cannot offer medical advice or prescribe medication. However, Talkspace does also offer a psychiatry service – and this will be recommended to you if it’s determined this is what you need.  

Talkspace Features And Benefits 

Below, I will describe the main features of Talkspace and rate them out of five stars.  

Getting Started With Talkspace 

To get started with Talkspace, you’ll register an account with your email, password and nickname. 

Afterwards, you’ll be prompted to schedule a call with a ‘matching therapist’. The purpose of this call is to pair you with the most suitable Talkspace therapist. 

Your ‘matching therapist’ will ask you a series of questions – based on your current mental health situation, demographics and personal preferences for working with an online therapist. Then, they’ll present you with a choice of three therapists most suited to your needs.  

Once you’ve completed your payment, you’ll be set up with a private chat room with your chosen therapist. 

All of your text and video communications will take place in this room. You’ll also use this room to arrange the time and date for your video sessions.  

Getting started:

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Usability

Talkspace is such a simple app to use. All of your communication takes place in your private chat room. 

Text chat is available on desktop and mobile. Video chats are available on mobile only. The quality of your video calls will mostly depend on your internet service, rather than the app itself. 

Even if you consider yourself a technophobe, you should have no problems using Talkspace. 

Usability:

Talkspace Therapists

There are approximately 3,000 licensed therapists working with Talkspace. In order to qualify to work with Talkspace, a therapist must have clocked up at least 3,000 hours of professional experience. 

Talkspace has employed a wide range of therapists who specialise in specific types of mental health treatment, including: Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Psychodynamic, Mindfulness, Existential-Humanistic, Dialectical Behavioral Therapy and more.

On top of that, Talkspace offers: 

  • Couples therapy ($396 per month);
  • Therapy for teens ($260 per month);
  • Live sessions with a psychiatrist ($199 for initial evaluation and $125 for follow-up sessions). 

Your initial call with a ‘matching therapist’ will help to ensure that you’re paired with the most suitable professional for your needs. 

You’ll be paired with the same professional throughout your Talkspace membership. However, you can swap whenever you like – no questions asked. When you do, you’ll need to connect with a matching therapist again in order to be paired with someone more suitable.    

Choice and quality of therapists:

Payment Options

Talkspace accepts payments via debit card, credit card or PayPal. You can pay monthly, quarterly or bi-annually. Your payments will recur until you choose to cancel them. 

Payment options:

Security 

Talkspace is HIPAA-certified. That means it follows the strict standards of data protection outlined by U.S law.   

Security:

Responsiveness

Although Talkspace advertises unlimited messaging, the reality is: your therapist will probably only be able to respond to you once or twice per day, depending on their schedule. 

If you’re unhappy with the speed or the manner in which your therapist responds, Talkspace will allow you to swap yours as often as you like.  

Responsiveness:

Customer Service

Talkspace runs a ticket-based email customer service. You can expect a response from its customer service team within 24 hours, or even quicker if your query is sent during working hours. Its customer service team is based in New York. 

Customer service:

Cancellation Policy

You can cancel Talkspace at any time. When you do, you can continue using it for the time period you’ve already paid for.    

Cancellation policy:

Value For Money

Talkspace is a high-quality online therapy service. There’s little doubt about that.

The main downside is that it costs a lot more than other similar services.

If you want unlimited text therapy and a weekly video call with your therapist, this will set you back $396 per month.

Its main competitor Betterhelp offers the same service for $260 a month and the quality of the service is just as good.

That’s why it’s difficult for me to recommend Talkspace over Betterhelp for traditional online therapy. Betterhelp is the #1 most popular therapy app in the world, largely because it offers superior value for money.

The one occasion where you may opt for Talkspace instead? If you want to take advantage of its specialist services, such as couples therapy or psychiatry.

If you do choose Talkspace, make sure to use this $100 Talkspace discount coupon

Value for money:

What Do People Think Of Talkspace?

Talkspace has only attracted seven reviews on TrustPilot and six of these were customers complaining about a poor experience.

A few of these individuals felt like they didn’t bond with their chosen therapist. 

Out of over 2,000 reviews on the Google Play store, it has averaged 2.7 stars.

There were plenty of Talkspace reviews from long-term users who really like the service.  

A few users left reviews on Talkspace, suggesting they felt like the text therapy wasn’t enough to satisfy their needs.  

Talkspace vs Betterhelp

Betterhelp is the #1 therapy app, as far as number of users. It’s designed similarly to Talkspace. However, the process used to match you with a therapist is different. Betterspace will assign you a therapist based on your answers to a 25-point questionnaire. If you prefer, you’re also able to manually select a therapist you like the look of.  

Betterhelp only offers one price tier. This grants you ‘unlimited’ live video calls and text chat with your therapist for $260 a month. 

It is a bit misleading for Betterhelp to advertise ‘unlimited’ live video calls as part of this package, as you’ll have to organise each of them around your therapist’s busy schedule. 

Still, it should be more than possible for you to arrange one video call per week – at a far lower price than what Talkspace charges. 

For a more detailed review, check out my guide on Talkspace vs Betterhelp.

Alternatives To Talkspace 

Here is a summary of Talkspace’s main competitors. 

Amwell

Amwell connects you with doctors and clinical psychiatrists, as well as therapists.  

It’s also possible to receive expert advice on niche issues such as pregnancy or menopause. 

Amwell charges per hourly session. You’ll pay between $59-$99 per hour, depending on what service is required.  

7 Cups Of Tea 

7 Cups Of Tea was initially a free mobile app, where users could get advice on personal issues from volunteer ‘listeners’.

These ‘listeners’ are not trained counsellors, life coaches or psychiatrists.  

However, the app has recently added a paid service, which allows you to engage with a licensed therapist via text.

This service costs $150 per month. Although this service is advertised as ‘unlimited’ text chat, the truth is: 7 Cups Of Tea therapists only work on weekdays and are only likely to reply to you once or twice per day. 

Niche therapy websites

These niche therapy websites might be worth a try.

  • Regain – for couples therapy.
  • Pride Counselling – LGBTQ therapy. 
  • Teen Counselling – therapy for teens.
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Conclusion: Talkspace Is A Great App, But It’s Not The Best On The Market 

If you’re struggling with mental health problems, I am sure Talkspace will help you a lot. There are thousands of great therapists, and this app lets you swap until you find one you really like.

However, this service offered is expensive, especially if you want to engage in live sessions via video. And I’d highly recommend you do, as video therapy is far more effective than text messaging. 

Even though this app is great, the fact is: Betterhelp offers a similar experience for less money. The majority of reviews for Betterhelp are from happy customers, too.

If you have any questions about this review of Talkspace, feel free to leave them in the comments section below.