Voip - Voice Over IP and Business: Is It For You?
VoIP allows users to make phone calls using their high-speed
Internet connection. This translates into free, or very low
cost long-distance calling. Because VoIP uses the power of
the Internet, traditional phone companies are left
completely out of the loop. Of course, now that the idea of
VoIP is catching on more and more, traditional phone
companies are developing and offering their own VoIP options
so as not to be left out. From the consumer's point of view,
this competition is keeping options open and pricing low.
For businesses, this is particularly good news, since many
VoIP providers will want the business of business--this is a
huge market, which providers are aware, of, so the savvy
businessperson will take advantage of this, conduct thorough
research, and seek out the best possible option to meet the
What are the Pros to Using VoIP?
Cost is a number one factor. If your business does a high
volume of long distance calling, this can be an extremely
affordable way to go. Another positive is that the future of
long distance calling is VoIP. As time passes, more and more
options will be available and the market will become even
more competitive. It is also easy to use, although a
business set-up will be more complicated than a home set-up.
What are the Cons?
One disadvantage that many users report is that there tends
to be an "echo" when using VoIP. How much of a disadvantage
this is may depend on the user. There can also be a slight
lag at the beginning of the conversation.
Another potential disadvantage is that the technology is
fairly new. As VoIP becomes standard, improvements will take
place. In the meantime, it is up to each business to
determine if this is a way to go.
Also, because VoIP operates through your Internet
connection, should you lose Internet service for whatever
reason or power, you will not have phone access until the
service or power is restored.
Is VoIP Right for my Business?
As with any business decision, you should examine your needs
and available services before making a purchasing decision.
VoIP may produce substantial savings, but it could also
produce substantial headaches. Whether or not your company
can navigate potential glitches with minimal interruption is
something you need to determine. Many traditional service
providers offer competitive pricing, and the security of the
existing structure may not be worth the potential problems
with VoIP. It is also necessary to price and compare the
technical requirements; will your existing structure support
VoIP, or will the investment in technology offset the
VoIP Business Options
On the bright side, because VoIP is a growing service, many
companies provide business solutions and the offers and
pricing are competitive. One thing to consider as you
compare options is contract terms. Because the technology is
expanding, it is wise to avoid any long- term contract, as a
better option may come along in the meantime. A variety of
companies offer business solutions. The following list is
just a few:
? Pipex: http://www.pipex.net/products/voip/
How to Get Set Up for VoIP The technology required will
depend on the service you choose. There are three types of
? ATA stands for analog telephone adaptor. It connects
to your computer or Internet connection and uses regular
? IP phones are special phones that look like
traditional phones, but they connect with an Ethernet
? Computer-to-computer is an easy way to use VoIP and
long distance calls are free; you only pay for the software.
While this method can work in a business setting, it may not
be the best solution, even though it is very cost effective.
VoIP requires a high-speed Internet connection, and for
business purposes, your set-up needs to be able to handle
the additional use that VoIP incurs. Essentially, there is
no "one size fits all" set-up guide for business VoIP
options. The service you choose and your company's
individual requirements will determine what you will need.
Andrew Kelly is a Technology Consultant who helps keep businesses at the leading edge of technology.
For more great tips and resources on everything VoIP visit:
www.voipvoiceoveripcenter.com" target="_blank">VoIP Solutions For Your Business