FREE MOBILE CLOUD
COMPUTING CONCEPTS - TRAINING_MODULES_WITH_TONS_OF_VIDEOS
HOW TO GET ONE
your business make long-distance phone calls on a regular basis? Do you have employees at multisite offices or in remote locations?
If so, you might want
to consider getting Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) for your business calls.
With VoIP, your calls are routed through your computer, allowing them to be conducted
without long distance charges no matter where in the world you are calling. This is particularly beneficial to businesses
working with international employees and contacts but it can also be useful for businesses that operate at multiple locations.
VoIP can be an excellent
tool for communication and a great way of reducing phone costs for your business.
But it's not right for every business, so you'll want to look carefully
at whether it's something that you want to invest in now. Things you'll want to consider include the amount of money currently
being spent on calls, the cost of setting up and maintaining your VoIP system, and the possible drawbacks of using VoIP.
A closer look at these topics can
assist you in making your decisions.
Here are some things to think about before you get invested in VoIP:
Does your company regularly make internal long distance
phone calls? If so, what is your current system for doing so and what is the approximate monthly cost of that system?
Does your current ISP have a VoIP
option? VoIP is relatively new and not all ISPs offer it yet.
Those that are may or may not provide bundled service
packages that make the change worth its cost.
What is the cost of VoIP offered by your ISP, including any hidden costs such as
equipment, networking, training and tech support?
What kind of equipment will be necessary for VoIP set-up?
Is your small or midsize business
already on a local area network (LAN) or wide area network (WAN), which facilitates setting up VoIP and reduces initial set-up
business might benefit from VoIP services if:
Your business has locations at multiple sites, or remote employees who are already connected through a LAN or WAN.
Companies that are already networked find that making the transition to VoIP is relatively low-cost (whereas those that aren't
networked should factor in the setup fees).
Calls to multiple numbers are often made simultaneously by your business.
It would benefit your business to be
able to receive voice mail as e-mail messages, as well as to be able to forward business phone calls to employee mobile and
employees are located in remote locations.
On-site employees are located in a region where it is common for personal cell phones to have different area code
numbers. For example, businesses located in the San Francisco Bay Area often have employees who live in any of a number of
different area codes. If regular communications occur with the far-flung employees' home or cell phones, long distance charges
can be high.
business already engages in many forms of remote collaboration, including conference calls, and costs may be reduced by going
through a VoIP system.
Your business deals with clients and customers in a variety of different locations, especially internationally, or
your business growth plan includes marketing to such areas. While you won't get the reduced cost on calls to non-VoIP clients,
you can plan to communicate through VoIP with the employees who are hired in the new locations. VoIP can facilitate those
Types of VoIP
are two different types of VoIP service. The first is often used by individual consumers. Also known as Internet Telephony,
this type of VoIP uses a standard landline and broadband service with an adapter and a VoIP subscription to connect all calls.
While some businesses are small enough to consider use of this kind of VoIP system, most businesses will be looking at the
second kind of VoIP system. This type of system, designed to link multisite locations to a single line, uses equipment installed
at the location to route phone calls through the Internet.
Additionally, you should know that there are two VoIP phone options: hosted and premise-based.
Hosted VoIP uses no phone lines and has a single broadband connection for both data and voice. Calls are generally charged
per use. In contrast, premise-based VoIP uses standard phone lines connected through the Internet and requires a second broadband
connection (one for data and one for voice). Calls are generally charged per line. This is the route many businesses take.
Equipment for Premise-based
relatively easy to set up, particularly for businesses that are already connected to a single network.
some new equipment will be necessary. This equipment includes:
A Private Branch Exchange (PBX), which is the hardware that manages
the phone calls through the Internet.
You may be able to use your existing phone system and upgrade it with IP-enablement
phones. VoIP calls are routed through the Internet but go through a standard phone. The phones used by your business, especially
if digital, may work; double-check their compatibility. Be aware, however, that VoIP-specific phones (such as those made by
Polycom and Cisco) are generally a better bet for businesses and are usually considered worth the initial output cost because
they offer far more call-handling and management functions than standard office phones.
Accommodations for landline phone
needs. If you have other office equipment that uses your existing landline (such as a fax system), you may need to purchase
software to upgrade the systems and make them VoIP-compatible.
Laptop add-ons for employees to use VoIP away from the office.
Drawbacks of VoIP
determining that VoIP is right for your small business, you should take into consideration two major VoIP drawbacks. First,
there are problems with maintaining an Internet-based system that don't occur with a standard landline. Inevitably, you'll
have software difficulties and Internet outages that will prevent VoIP calls. Because cell phone communication is so prevalent
today, this may not be a large problem for most businesses but it should be considered.
The bigger issue is that VoIP increases your network
demands. Your broadband connection needs to have enough bandwidth to maintain call quality. If this is a concern, your business
should look into Ethernet networks and frame relay networks to improve quality of service. Your company may also require an
additional Quality of Service (QoS) application which upgrades the VoIP system to improve communication.
The bottom line is that the bottom line matters. Costs to consider include:
Initial set-up, including extra
equipment that might need to be purchased to make VoIP work with your existing system.
Training costs. Will your staff
need to be trained on the system? What will this cost if an IT person is needed for the training? What will this cost in terms
of time lost to training?
Maintenance costs (monthly lease fees). Know the details of your plan including per minute, per use or per line VoIP
Troubleshooting and IT assistance costs. Many companies assist with initial setup at no charge but expect fees for
Bundle options. In the past, VoIP bundles have been for individual consumers (combining home phone, cell phone, broadband,
and digital cable) but companies are starting to roll out VoIP bundles for businesses.
Expected savings. Consider the
amount that your business currently spends on long distance calls as well as the projected amount that will be spent in the
upcoming year based on your business growth plans. Compare this with the cost of VoIP. Also consider other expenses saved,
including the enhanced productivity allowed by remote collaboration via VoIP. And think about areas where your business can
cut back because of VoIP; for example, if you have secretaries at every site answering phones, you can streamline that work
to one secretary.
Additionally, network administrators will be maintaining only one network, saving time and money.
After weighing the pros and cons,
you have to make the final decision about whether VoIP is right for your business at this time. If you decide that a VoIP
purchase is a good idea, consider these final tips for the purchasing process:
Shop around. This sounds obvious but many business buyers
go straight to their own ISP and don't go any further. Explore all of your options before making a VoIP purchase. Consider
using a licensed reseller for the purchase.
Get and understand manufacturer support. Your VoIP system will eventually have problems;
at the very least, it will require upgrades. Be sure that you know the details of how to obtain help and services.
Ask in advance if you will have
all of the admin passwords to make simple changes. You want a VoIP system that you can access yourself for things like changing
users; you don't want your business to have to foot the bill for an IT person to do that.
Be sure that your bandwidth capacity will be sufficient.
The keywords to look for here are "low jitter," "low latency" and "low packet loss."
Find out whether add-on services
are available (for example, an 800 number for your business) that you may need or want to consider in the future and what
the options are for adding-on after the start-up date.
VoIP is increasingly popular among businesses, especially as the potential
for remote collaboration is being employed by more businesses. However, it comes with initial and ongoing costs. If the costs
outweigh the benefits, don't be afraid to wait until VoIP is a little less of a newcomer technology before making the call
for your business.
What's a VOIP Busines Phone System - PBX Phone Systems for Small Business
What the heck is a PBX?
It's the kind of powerful phone system that only big business could afford. Until we came along. TalkSwitch makes the original
affordable all-in-one PBX telephone
systems and IP PBX phone systems for small business with up to 64 phones per location, and we've
been doing it for longer than any manufacturer out there.
Great systems, small prices - compare the cost of TalkSwitch to
other systems and you'll see. Complete phone systems from
US$695. VoIP phone systems from US$995. But it's more than just our
low prices. TalkSwitch phone systems also save your small business money.
The Perfect Features
Voicemail, auto attendants, dial-by-name directory,
ring groups. And much more. TalkSwitch comes complete with the kind of sophisticated
features that users of big business PBX phone systems take for granted.
Voice over IP? Multi-location integration? No problem; small business VoIP is
here. TalkSwitch models handle both VoIP and the traditional telephone network. With a TalkSwitch VoIP PBX, you connect the
way you choose; VoIP (Voice
over IP) and traditional telephone
networks, IP phones or standard analog telephones. TalkSwitch PBX and IP PBX phone systems deliver the best of both worlds in one easy-to-use
Your work doesn't stop at the walls of your office. Neither does TalkSwitch. With Connect Anywhere extensions, you can add your cell phones or any other telephones, anywhere, as extensions
of your system. TalkSwitch uniquely connects your mobile and teleworkers.
Unlike other small business
telephone systems, TalkSwitch is easy
to install, saving you time
and money; you can even do it yourself. And with its easily configured settings, moving employees or changing the way your
phone system handles calls is a snap.
TalkSwitch has a modular architecture that lets you grow when you need to. Designed to maintain your investment as you grow, TalkSwitch covers from 1-64 users per