It’s an acronym that stands for Voice over Internet Protocol, also known as IP telephony. VoIP is simply a telephone service which makes and receive calls using your computer’s internet connection. It also provides more communication options and functionality for your company to utilize.
Each one offers different features and price points. You need to consider how you plan on using VoIP and how much data you plan on using it. Some VoIP providers charge extra for long distance calls or unlimited numbers. Others will allow you to call landlines for free with a small monthly fee. If you plan on expanding your business or adding employees, you might want to consider one of these plans.
Hosted PBX: Hosted PBX (or virtual PBX) phone service is pretty self-explanatory. This is a type of phone service, in which the entire phone system is located within a single company. Companies such as Vonage, Fairmount, and several other large companies have done hosted PBX services. Many small businesses are now switching to a hosted model as it provides them with similar features and cost savings.
IP Telephony: IP Telephony is the transmission of voice calls over the internet. IP telephony uses your broadband internet connection to transmit and receives calls. It differs from traditional phone services, in that you can make unlimited calls to and from your cell phone or regular phone, even if the phones are not hooked up to the same network as your computer. To make calls over the internet, your company must have a special IP address.
PC-To-PC Phone Service: PC-To-PC phone service allows you to make a call from your computer to another computer. You can also use this service to send messages from your computer to someone else. When you use this service, your calls are made within your local area code, even if you’re calling overseas.
Switching Phone System: Some businesses, such as hospitals and universities, have decided to go completely wireless. They’ve found that switching their phone system, either via VoIP or another type of phone service, saves them money over purchasing a wireless phone. For this service, the business simply disconnects its landline number and connects a wireless number to it instead. When a customer calls the hospital switchboard, the operator who answers the phone will automatically dial the wireless number. This type of service usually has a small monthly fee.
For example, there are now a variety of different software programs that allow a person to control their phone through a computer. The person doesn’t have to pick up the phone and answer it. Instead, the computer can do it for them. Some people like this service because it eliminates the need for them to carry around a phone and have it in their hands at all times. Other people like this service because they don’t want to be interrupted while they’re on the phone with someone.
Features to Look For: If you’re deciding between any two VoIP phone services, make sure you check out the features of each. Do they allow you to make unlimited calls? Can you place voice calls at up to three times per day? Does it allow you to place calls anywhere in the country? Ask yourself these questions before you sign up with a VoIP phone service:
One Plan Is Just One: VoIP service plans come with varying levels of “talk time” or how long a customer can use their service. This is an important factor to consider. If you need more talk time, one plan may not be adequate. However, it’s also true that if you only need to make one or two calls each month, one plan could be sufficient.
Call Me Later: Although VoIP does provide many features that enable you to make unlimited calls, you can only use them if you have internet access. If you don’t, you’re out of luck. So make sure you have a computer with internet access. Otherwise, you won’t be able to make any calls.