What is VoIP?
Finding the Right Solution For Your Business
Information about VoIP Phone
In the age of technology innovation, business communications are not the same as before. Some years ago, shifting from analog to digital telephony was the most many people thought it would go, but now, Internet telephony is taking over. VoIP (Voice over Internet protocol) systems are able to make calls through an Internet connection, rather than a phone line, which is a huge money-saver for businesses or private users. So what exactly is a VoIP phone and why does your business need it?
Read more: Business VoIP Phones
VoIP Telephone Systems
Conventional systems include a set of phones, connected with multiple lines to the Public Switched Telephone Network (PSTN). Using the PSTN, the user is charged a cost for each call by the phone provider, so for companies with many lines and a heavy call flow this isn’t a cost efficient option anymore. VoIP services eliminate the need of connecting to the PSTN and they run entirely on a software-based network. Calls are transmitted from the VoIP phone to the recipient via broadband Internet connection which is far cheaper than any other means of communication.
The infrastructure of the VoIP system includes several pieces of hardware- a VoIP phone, an Internet router and a computer. In order to get the main system, businesses need to subscribe to a VoIP provider. They can purchase the software and store it in-house or pay for a virtual service, where the system is stored with the supplier. Installation and maintenance of the system is usually also done by the supplier.
Read more: IP Phone
How VoIP Works
The main component of the system is the Internet connection needed for it to run. The VoIP phone is a special piece of hardware, looking like a regular phone, but is able to receive and transmit calls in a digital format over the Internet. The user places a call, which is translated in a format, suitable to run through the Internet and reaching the recipient, it is transformed back to a traditional phone line call. VoIP systems are not limited in terms of range and they allow regional, long- distance or even international calls at a low cost.
Read more: Mobile VoIP
VoIP systems are the most advanced and rich in features solutions currently. They provide all the basic functions of other phone systems, as well as many more sophisticated ones, so they are able to fit the communication needs of all-scale businesses. Some of these features include HD conference calling with more than 10 participants, unlimited faxing, customized greetings and auto attendants, voicemail transcriptions and the find me function, which enables employees to be mobile and still receive calls.
Some of those features are a must for larger businesses, but smaller companies may not need to take advantage of them. This is why the VoIP system is flexible and entirely customizable as customers are able to pay exactly for the features their business needs.
Read more: Wireless VoIP Phone
Advantages of VoIP Systems
The system is able to adapt to changing business needs with addition or removal of features.
A great benefit for employees on the move is that they can be reached at any location if they are connected to the Internet.
- Supported technology
VoIP systems support the integration of all kinds of devices, including faxes, mobile phones, tablets and laptops.
- Cost consciousness
VoIP systems may require a bit of a larger investment, but free calls over the Internet save businesses a lot more money at the end.
The big set of features the VoIP system offers is a way for businesses to improve their communication means with customers and lead to a better and more professional approach towards them.
What to Consider Before Investing?
VoIP systems are not cheap to implement, but with investing in the right kind of system and provider, businesses are able to benefit a lot from it. The first factor they should think about is their Internet infrastructure. VoIP systems which support many users can easily stop running smoothly if the connection isn’t good. Therefore, an investment in a strong connection and a good router is crucial before investing in a VoIP system so it is able to handle all processes.
Choosing your VoIP provider is also an important choice to make. There are many software suppliers on the market, but not all of them offer the same. Business owners should look at service plan and what they include, international call rates, quality of call, interface and support.
Purchasing the equipment can be costly, since the average price of the VoIP phone is around £60, but some VoIP providers offer free phones with subscription. This is good for businesses with limited financial resources, since they can look for such a supplier or go for the hosted VoIP.
Another thing that deserves attention is the call quality the provider offers and their average downtime. Business owners can ask for their MOS (Mean Opinion Score), which is from 1 to 5 and ranges from 3.5 to 5 are acceptable for a VoIP service. Downtime is good to know to estimate the reliability of the system.
VoIP Phone System Prices
VoIP systems have a lot of providers, who charge different rates, but generally subscription prices can go from £15 to £30 per user a month. Naturally, subscriptions come with various features and minutes included, so companies should look out for the best offer. VoIP providers also have different service plans for small, medium and large enterprises to offer them the most adequate pricing for their needs.
VoIP systems are the future of telephony and can be beneficial for businesses of all size and industries. It provides them with elevated features and drastically reduces cost of calls, making it an optimal telecommunication solution.