Business VoIP FAQ

Got a question about VoIP? questions answered in black and white, plain English!

What is VoIP

VoIP (short for “Voice Over Internet Protocol”) is the transmission of voice communication via the internet – done so via IP-based telephony networks. Often referred to as “internet telephony” or “IP telephony”, VoIP has become very popular over recent years due to the cost advantages for consumers and businesses compared to traditional telephony networks.

What does all this mean? Put simply it means you can make or receive telephone calls, as you would normally. Instead of the phone call travelling over copper wire to your premises, it travels over your internet connection.

Due to all calls being made over the web, long-distance and international call charges are greatly reduced – and also aren’t confined to using a standard telephone handset, as calls can be made through the use of a computer or internet-enabled device.

Although VoIP popularity has risen in the consumer market with the dominance of Skype, VoIP can be greatly beneficial to businesses – especially for companies that are making a lot of calls on a daily basis (ie. call centres), or those that are in active international communication. Businesses that operate from multiple locations or with home workers will benefit instantly from having one phone systems that just works at all locations. VoIP helps to greatly reduce the costs associated with traditional telephony, while providing the portability and scalability that business communication requires.

Why should I switch to VoIP

There are many benefits of switching to a VoIP system from traditional telephony, you can continue reading about the advantages here.

What kind of internet connection do I need?

Typically, any standard broadband internet connection will be fine for VoIP usage. The faster the connection, the less likely there is to be quality issues or any potential transmission data problems while making and receiving phone calls.

How good is the quality of VoIP?

The voice quality of VoIP is as you would expect with a traditional phone system – and there is no difference using an IP-enabled phone on a VoIP network then there would be with a typical telephony system. Depending on the speed of the internet connection that is available for the VoIP network router, the quality may be interrupted should there not be sufficient bandwidth to sustain the number of calls being sent and received, but advice and further detail can be provided on this depending on the type of business and number of employees that your company has.

What hardware is required?

In order to initially setup a VoIP telephone system, there are three key things that are required:

  • An internet connection (broadband or similar)
  • A router that has the ability to distribute and manage the internet connection to the necessary people within the business
  • An IP-enabled phone – either a physical VoIP/SIP phone, or a soft-phone on a computer, smart phone, or similar internet-enabled communication device
VoIP is essentially plug-and-play in the hardware respect, with no need for the physical storage of a PBX or other networking equipment within the office.