For most businesses, deciding between modern VoIP systems and a traditional landline isn't always as straightforward as it should be. While both options offer unique benefits, the best choice truly depends on the business's specific needs – and choosing the wrong option could have potential unforeseen consequences. This article will look at both VoIP and landline options to determine which is truly better for business and give business owners the information they need to make an informed decision.
What is a VoIP?
VoIP, also known as Voice over Internet Protocol, is a communication technology type that allows anyone to make phone calls through internet connections instead of a traditional optical or wired phone line. VoIP is referred to as IP telephony or Internet calling; however, the basic premise and requirements for the technology to work are the same.
VoIP works by breaking voice signals into small data packets which are sent to a recipient over the Internet. One of the most significant benefits of a VoIP system is the wide range of devices capable of being used to enable communications. For instance, while most people will use a VoIP system in an office setting through an existing system that resembles a traditional phone, other devices like a computer, smartphone, and more also can be used.
Pros and Cons of VoIP Systems VoIP systems are a reliable and versatile communications option for businesses as many industries continue to digitize. While these systems offer many different benefits, including a reduction in overall costs, VoIP systems aren't the right fit for every business, particularly those unable to maintain a stable, high-speed internet connection. However, if they can, some of the benefits that can be expected from a shift to VoIP include:
Cost Savings – Since VoIP systems transmit calls over the Internet, users aren't charged for minutes or an entirely separate phone bill. Instead, the only charges that need to be considered are a monthly bill for high-speed Internet and any associated equipment costs required to get started, like a telephone receiver or VoIP connector for existing phones.
Quality Improvements – With VoIP systems, users often experience a more precise sound than they would with analog phone lines. Although, the quality of a call is directly correlated to the Internet signal that is sending it. In addition to this signal boost, VoIP solutions often also include video conferencing and multimedia messages – much like a cell phone.
Device Expansions – Traditional phone systems require a user to use a receiver that is tied to wiring. With VoIP, a digital number can be transmitted to multiple devices through the use of applications. This means that calls routed to a dedicated office phone could be sent to various other devices, including a cell phone, laptop, or any other Internet-connected device.
What is a Landline?
Most business owners are already familiar with landline phone systems and likely already have one installed in their office. These systems were initially invented in 1876, and the technology has seen little advancement over the years. Although, many changes have occurred from the receiving end as handsets grew to have screens and caller ID capabilities.
Landline phones transmit signals phone one phone to another through copper wiring and a series of physical switch boxes. While these systems offer fast communication worldwide, maintenance on them can be challenging and involved. As long as the wiring is intact and payment has been made to a provider, landline phone systems will operate with little chance of disruption.
Pros and Cons of Landline Systems
Landline phone systems have been a reliable communication platform for centuries. Because these systems are standalone, many businesses rely on them daily to fulfill job requirements. Although, modern technologies like VoIP are becoming more popular as Internet availability continues to reach new levels and speeds. When a company chooses to invest in a landline, some benefits they can expect include:
Reliability – As previously stated, one of the most significant benefits of a landline system is its reliability. Unlike a VoIP that requires stable Internet access, a landline will continue to operate whenever inclement weather occurs, or an internet connection is lost. This could potentially decrease the amount of downtime a business has if its Internet connection isn't the best.
Quality Consistency – As previously stated, the call quality of a VoIP system depends on the currently available bandwidth. Businesses can expect a stable level of quality with no dropped calls or other unwanted glitches with a landline system. As long as the cabling and receiver are intact, slight variation will occur in quality.
Higher Costs – Unfortunately, one con of a landline phone system is that it requires a monthly fee through a provider for functionality. This means that choosing to invest in a landline system will need an additional fee on top of the charged fees through an Internet Service Provider (ISP). This is one of the primary reasons that many businesses have shifted to VoIP.
Still Not Sure Which to Choose? As a Mitel Dealer, One Comm can provide scalable VoIP telephony services to meet any business's unique needs – no matter what size they may be. Mitel's comprehensive range of business phone systems can help fit the exact requirements of our customers. With both on-site and cloud business phone system options, One Comm can help make the process simple. Contact us today or call us at (479) 715-8800 to learn more about our scalable and reliable business phone systems!