Finding The BEST VoIP Service – A Quick Guide For SMBs
Both your traditional phone service (sometimes called PSTN) and VoIP transmit phone calls, but that’s where the similarities end. Unlike the former which uses telephone lines, a VoIP service uses your office’s internet connection to handle phone calls.
Back then, a call transmitted through the Public Switched Telephone Network (PSTN) was sent as analog data, which travels through copper wires. Fast forward today, copper wires were replaced with high-bandwidth cables, which transmit digital data.
This is somewhat similar to how hosted VoIP solutions work – using digital data for transmitting calls.
The BIG difference, however, is that VoIP solutions don’t need the same generations-old infrastructure that PSTNs use…and that can only be good news for potential VoIP customers.
With the old infrastructure and expensive network out of the way, you can make a phone call to another computer or phone via VoIP at a fraction of the cost. Sometimes, the calls are even FREE…and we’re not even talking about the amazing feature sets and unbeatable business advantages brought by VoIP!
Unbeatable Advantages Of VoIP
- Increased Mobility: A lot of VoIP service providers like RingCentral (which was thoroughly reviewed by yours truly) even have mobile apps, which you can use to make and take calls while you’re on the go…something that a PSTN can only dream of! This is a boon especially for businesses that have a mobile workforce. To make the deal even sweeter, you can use the mobile app to ring your office phone simultaneously or to use your smartphone as a standalone extension.
- Low Cost: This is perhaps the BIGGEST attraction of business VoIP services. For starters, there’s significantly less hardware to buy or lease to get started. Matter of fact, many hosted VoIP solutions don’t require you to purchase new hardware. But should your switch from PSTN to VoIP require a hardware investment, you can rest easy knowing that these hardware components are based on standardized technologies…NOT proprietary products that will bond you to a specific provider.
- Scalable: This is another BIG advantage especially for SMBs that plan to expand. Instead of investing in expensive hardware to accommodate new recruits to your workforce, you can easily add new extensions by simply connecting your SIP-enabled phone to your network and having the right the right software settings. Even better, phones that have been approved for use with your VoIP provider can be hooked up to your network through plug and play!
It’s only when you’ve determined that it’s prime time to switch to a VoIP service that you should start reading VoIP reviews and caring about the features…and you don’t have to search high and low for detailed and enlightening reviews.
Here at VoIPBeast, I have personally tested and reviewed 5 hosted VoIP services that are tailored for the needs for small-to-medium-sized businesses.
- RingCentral: Has been around since 1999, and boasts an unshakable reputation for being reliable and cost-effective
- Phone Power: Awarded by Deloitte’s 2012 Technology Fast 500 as the 22nd fastest growing company in North America
- VoiPo: Founded in 2006 by the world-famous internet hosting provider Hostgator and based in Newport Beach, California
- Grasshopper:Founded in 2003 and is now serving over 100,000 (and still counting) entrepreneurs and businesses
- Rebtel: Started in Stockholm, Sweden during 2006, Rebtel now ranks as world’s second largest mobile VoIP company…and the company only took 7 years to achieve that distinction