It’s now an acronym that stands for Voice over Internet Protocol, which means voice communication over the Internet. It offers more voice communication options and functionality for your company to utilize.
VoIP is a type of communication that allows voice calls to be made over internet connections.
There are several types of VoIP phone service providers out there to choose from. Some of them provide public switched telephone network (PSTN) service. They connect to PSTN using high-speed or broadband connections from computer to computer.
RingCentral is one of these VoIP phone service providers. It provides local and toll-free numbers to business customers. The service can connect to your computer, telephone jack, video conferencing, ISDN, Fiber Optic Cable, Mobile Broadband or Wi-Fi. As with all VoIP phone services, ringcentral has free software that makes it easy to manage your calls and messages.
Another provider of VoIP phone service is on-premise pbx systems. An on-premise PBX system is exactly that – a private, on-premise telephone system. You pay for the features that you want, such as call forwarding and call waiting, in addition to the hardware and services required to support your needs.
There are also off-premise alternatives to some VoIP providers.
For example, many telecommunication companies provide their own IP-based voice service. If your company has access to the Internet with a high-speed Internet connection, this may be a good choice. Otherwise, your best option might be a hosted VoIP provider. Hosted telephony solutions are usually offered by smaller firms, which may not have the capital to maintain their own IT systems.
A third alternative is to purchase a virtual PBX system instead of an actual PBX. A virtual PBX works just like an actual PBX except for the fact that it is hosted on the provider’s server rather than at the customer site. Virtual pbx systems are offered by many companies, and most offer features similar to what you would find in a hosted solution, such as auto attendant assistance, music on hold and caller ID, among others. One advantage of virtual pbx phone systems is that they do not require any type of hardware, although software is available to integrate them into your office network. Your on-premise sex can become a virtualized solution as well, allowing you to switch between voicemail, web-based caller Id, IVR, or phone conferencing with instant messaging.
You also have the choice of either purchasing VoIP phone systems outright, or buying one of many converged VoIP phone systems. A converged system contains all of the components of a traditional PBX: switched and unswitched circuits, circuit switching equipment, IP phone services, extension services, and call forwarding. The PBX functions just like a conventional PSTN system, but with one key difference – the PSTN phones are able to transmit over the same data network as the IP traffic. A converged system uses the same phone service equipment you already own and eliminates the need to buy new hardware.
In summary, a VoIP phone system offers many benefits over conventional telephony. A key benefit is that the quality of the sound is very good, particularly if you are using the latest VoIP calling plans. Another major advantage is the ease of integrating voice applications with web applications and other computer applications. Lastly, a VoIP phone system can enable collaboration among employees who previously did not communicate with each other.
The main disadvantage of VoIP is that it requires an excellent internet connection. Even if your internet connection is the best available, a VoIP phone system will only make use of a fraction of its capacity. A broadband internet connection is required for most VoIP systems; dialup and even slow connection rates are unacceptable. This means that if you do not have an excellent internet connection, you probably cannot take advantage of the myriad features provided by VoIP. Another disadvantage of VoIP is that you will need a converter to connect it to your home telephone lines. Converting between different phone systems is time consuming and expensive.
An alternative to these problems is a type of virtual telephone system known as trunking. The VoIP service provider routes all outgoing calls through a series of trunks until the call reaches a specified destination. The service provider charges a flat fee for each trunk, which is then rerouted to the intended destination at the agreed time.
If you opt for a VoIP Phone Service, your communication should be entirely tailored to meet your needs. You must evaluate the cost effectiveness of the different types of VoIP Phone Systems and decide on the one that suits your individual needs best.
- The features of VoIP Phone Systems are constantly improving and you can expect them to do so in the near future.
- In order to get the most from your VoIP Phone System, you should opt for a reputable service provider who offers excellent customer support.
- It is essential that you get the right advice and information about VoIP to help you determine the right direction for your VoIP Phone system.