Since its development, VoIP has become widely adopted for both business and home use. In some cases, telephone customer and users may not even realize they have a VoIP phone. In the business realm, VoIP is the natural choice for telephone systems because it is more feature-rich than the traditional legacy phone systems and far less expensive, but users still may be asking questions about VoIP. The following are some of the top questions asked about VoIP phone systems.
What is VoIP Anyway?
VoIP, or Voice over Internet Protocol, at its most basic definition, it is a telephone system that enables users to make phone calls using a high-speed internet connection. VoIP systems have been around since the 1990s and offer far more versatility and potential features than the traditional phone system; however, a VoIP connection requires a broadband internet connection.
Unlike traditional telephone systems that use switching signaling technology, VoIP users are not confined to traditional telephones and handset, though they can use them if they so desire. VoIP also allows users to make a local phone call through a softphone or with their desktop computer, but they are not just limited to stationary equipment. Today, many users may also use applications on their various mobile devices to make these same local calls, giving a VoIP phone mobile capability. The only caveat is an internet connection.
Common VoIP Questions
What are the high-speed internet requirements?
One of the burning questions potential VoIP users ask relates to bandwidth needs. VoIP systems need sufficient bandwidth to handle both incoming and outgoing call traffic and demand an internet connection speed of at least 32 Kbps. Anything lower may result in poor quality calling. The good news is today, most internet connection speeds used, even with a basic internet package, for both home and enterprise level connections far outpace these speeds. If you are not sure about your broadband speeds, you can check them online using a bandwidth tester.
Does a VoIP system prevent me from using the Internet while on a Call?
Many people may still recall the days of dial-up internet connections. While a user was on the internet, absolutely no calls could make it through, and the caller would hear a busy signal. You would also get kicked off the internet if someone picked up the phone’s handset while you were connected. This forced many people to have dedicated telephone lines for their internet connection and develop the idea that you couldn’t be online and take a call at the same time. Luckily, broadband connections and VoIP calls do not live in this paradigm. You can absolutely use the internet while on a phone call at the same time.
What kind of equipment do I need for a VoIP system?
You only need two things if you are installing office phones: a broadband connection and a handset. Using your desktop or a mobile device requires a VoIP application. Be sure to discuss these options with your VoIP phone systems provider to learn how you can give your employees additional choices.You can also check out this post on VoIP hardware.
What happens to the phone system if the office moves?
Unlike traditional phone systems that require technicians and a lot of lead time to move, the VoIP system is far easier to relocate. It does not matter if you move your office to the building next door or across the country, your VoIP system will work anywhere. Just simply take your telephone handset to a new office and connect it to the broadband connection and, voila, your phone is back up and running.
What is hosted VoIP and how is it different from SIP trunking?
This is where things get fuzzy for most businesses, because both hosted VoIP and SIP trunking are flavors of VoIP phone systems. The difference between these two is where the system lives. With SIP trunking, the telephone system is hosted on-premise, and all equipment, network configurations, upgrades, security protocols, and other telephone system management becomes the responsibility of the company’s IT departments. Hosted VoIP telephone systems are, by contrast, out-of-the-box services. Your cloud communications service provider handles the network, configuration, security, and management of these systems.
Unlike SIP trunking, a cloud communications provider or unified communications provider has far more feature-rich opportunities for the business that truly unifies communications across platforms and mediums, such as voicemail to email or text. Additionally, because the cloud communication partner handles management of the service, the IT team is not responsible for upgrades and general maintenance, which frees them to work more pressing IT needs.
Deciding on a VoIP system for your business makes sense because it is far easier to deploy and manage than the traditional system. VoIP systems also save a considerable amount of operational costs as well as provide features that might not be offered or that might be too expensive from a