Voice over IP (VoIP) is a technology that allows you to make and receive phone calls over the internet. Traditionally, phone calls used to take place over the Public Switched Telephone Network (PSTN) using the copper cables. VoIP converts analogue voice into digital data which can then be routed and handled exactly like any other data packet over the internet. Voice calls are routed over the same data network that processes emails, documents, and media files like images and videos.
Businesses can use the office internet connection to connect to the telephone network and can use a softphone application to make calls from different devices that can connect to the internet like IP phones, computers, tablets, mobile phones and many other devices. Unlike landlines, IP phones needs electricity to function which means it will be essential to have a power backup.
It is also relatively easy to add, remove and change user information on VoIP. With the traditional PSTN, if a user needed to be added to the system, a phone technician would have to physically install an outlet at your office. VoIP is much easier to customise and managing users and phone features can be made by your provider remotely or by you using the VoIP web application.
Staff who are always on the move or work from home or at client locations can easily access the business phone system from any location. Users can connect to the business phone system using any integrated device like laptops, mobiles and tablets making it possible for users to work remotely and not be tied down to one location.
VoIP gives you access to a lot of features that usually incur an additional fee with standard telephone systems. These are advanced applications that has the potential to help your staff be more productive and flexible. Features like caller id, call forwarding/transfers, auto attendants, IVR, phone directories, conference calling and presence information are example of services that are generally included in most VoIP services without additional costs.
Because VoIP uses the internet to make calls rather than on the copper lines, international calls are much cheaper and are sometimes free depending on the VoIP provider. Phone calls, line rental and mobile rates will also be cheaper compared to traditional phone systems.