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Can You Hear Me Now? The VoIP Option: Pros & Cons Explained

voip phone systems chicago

Since VoIP came on the telecom scene back in the early 2000’s it has grown in popularity and become a commonly used term in the business community. With more and more technology moving to internet/cloud based delivery it makes sense that our phones do the same.

Now, VoIP offers many features that a legacy phone system doesn’t, but when it comes to choosing a system that connects your business to the outside world, you’ve got to take many factors into consideration.

That being said, we would like to provide you a brief list of pros and cons to VoIP systems. Remember, each business and each setup interact with VoIP differently. Some of these may or may not apply to your company. It is always important to consult a reputable vendor who understands both your telephone and your current IT setup first.

The VoIP Option: Pros & Cons Explained

Pros

Monthly Cost Savings: Perhaps the biggest advantage of choosing VoIP is the opportunity for monthly savings. Traditional systems depend on landlines (POTS lines) to connect your calls. Some VoIP systems allow you to cancel all landlines and connect calls via internet. This cuts out the middle (your phone company). Do not be fooled though. You still pay for service to this system on a per phone basis.

Lower Hardware Costs: VoIP systems are typically less costly up front. This depends on the type of system you are purchasing and the options your vender offers. Sometimes there is no upfront cost at all for these systems. However, we all know nothing in life is REALLY free. Many times when a company offers free hardware, they build that price into your monthly cost. Be sure to look into this before signing on the dotted line.

Versatility and Scalability: VoIP allows you to tailor your phones and features to your business needs. Systems come as basic or feature rich as you want. Do you need CRM features? Call parking? Auto attendant? Twinning? Presence Management? These are all features that VoIP can provide. It should be mentioned that PBX systems offer these functions too.

Portable/Professional: VoIP is great for people on the move.  Switching from an office phone to a mobile phone? VoIP can make a switch between phones seamless.  These features allow clients to transfer quickly between phones. Imagine you are on the phone with a prospect and don’t want to hang up but you’ve got a meeting you have to leave for . . . with enhanced features you can press a button and transfer that call to your cell phone without the prospect even knowing you’ve left your office.
VoIP Chicagoland Providers

CONS

Sound quality: When transferring calls over the internet instead of a landline, there can be a decrease in the sound quality. VoIP takes up more bandwidth and depends on a strong internet connection for best call quality.  Not only do you need a constant and steady internet connection, you also need to make sure that your bandwidth will support the demands of your office.

Power outages: VoIP requires power and an internet connection, so if power goes out you can expect service disruptions for your phones.  Having one emergency landline or call forwarding takes care of this problem, in case an emergency ever arises.

Hidden Costs & Hardware Ownership: While we mentioned cost savings as a plus for VoIP phones, those same savings can bite you in the end. Be wary of a provider offering free equipment. This typically means they are charging you EVERY month for hardware. On top of that, many VoIP providers entice customers with great deals on hardware but aren’t clear about who owns what. If you aren’t clear about those finer details you may find yourself paying every month for years on hardware you don’t even own only to have it taken away when you switch providers.

If you’ve made it this far into this article, I’m sure you’ve noticed that each characteristic has positive and negative elements to it. Phones are a very tricky topic for many business owners.

The one absolute positive you have is that by collaborating with Andromeda, you’ve chosen a technology partner that puts your interests above all else. We help our clients install all varieties of phone systems including PBX Systems, Hybrid IP Office systems, Cloud VoIP systems and more. The most important piece of the VoIP puzzle is choosing a vendor you trust.

If you are considering a new phone system for your business, give us a call today and let us guide you through your options.