How To Set Up VoIP Fast and Easily
More and more people are switching to VoIP solutions. Why? This new communication platform offers greater scalability, efficiency, and cost-effectiveness than conventional mobile networks.
Usually, businesses and residential subscribers see an average saving of up to 75% after switching from conventional lines to VoIP. Even big companies such as Dell have reported huge savings after exploiting telecommuting capabilities of VoIP solutions.
How Do VoIP Phones work?
Conventional phones or landlines are based on analog technology which sends voice through a series of exchanges or switch boxes to the receiver. They require you to install and maintain hardware that mainly consists of copper wires, channels, and plugs. This can be burdensome and often confusing.
In contrast, VoIP converts your analog voice calls into digital signals which are then sent as data over the internet. This means you don’t have to pay for phone calls based on location, country, or length of the call.
The fact that VoIP works with digital packets of data makes it easy to customize the phone system. A typical VoIP phone offers you features that you would not normally find in your legacy phone. Examples include inbound faxing, conference, administration call panel, and extensions.
Now then, how do you set up your VoIP to make your first call?
How to set up a VoIP phone
The process of setting up a VoIP phone system depends directly on your needs. How many users are you looking to have? What type of VoIP do you want? What features do you want to be included and so forth?
Evaluate the number of users
You must figure out the number of users that are going to use the VoIP system. Perhaps you are running a business with multiple employees, or you are in a residence with a few occupants.
A solid idea of the total number of users makes it easier for you to make critical decisions as you go along. Not only will it help you gauge how many lines you need but also the average bandwidth you need to get going.
Consider the option of the extension feature as it might eliminate the need of many lines and, thus, unnecessary costs.
Make sure your internet connection is capable
A poor internet connection just won’t do you good. Sometimes the internet connection may not be the problem. The ratio of users to the available bandwidth also matters.
Since you have already established the number of users your VoIP system will host, go ahead and test your connection to judge whether it will handle the traffic volume.
Knowing the capabilities of your connection prior to acquiring your VoIP system will save you from frustration that comes with poor quality calls and downtime. Besides, if you install the VoIP system only to find that your connection is inept, you will be compelled to roll back to the old system or spend more on upgrading your internet connection.
Gauge your budget
VoIP comes with a broad range of attractive features which are likely to get you carried away when selecting bonuses and add-ons. It’s wise to set a limit on how much you are willing to spend to avoid overspending. Be sure to compare monthly versus annual plans for potential savings.
What features do you value most? VoIP offers an extensive range of features, some of which may only add up on your costs without delivering on value. Examples of basic features that you may consider include call rules, auto call router, unique phone numbers for users, mobile apps, and conference calling.
Do some research on key VoIP features that may that relate to your home or business needs. Review specific things that you want your VoIP to accomplish as well as primary uses.
Choose a service
Now it’s time to select a provider. Be sure to have a record of the total number of users, budget, list of features, and budget as these will be handy for reference. A suitable provider is one who offers what you need, actually works for your needs, is within your budget, and offers supreme customer service.
Configure hardware and software
Most VoIP solutions do not require special VoIP hardware or phones. You can use a special adapter to link your old system to your new system. Alternatively, you could use your tablet, computer or smartphone.
Even so, you need a VoIP phone to exploit extra VoIP features fully. There is a wide variety of VoIP phones, ranging from cheap to expensive, and from simple to sophisticated.
Most VoIP phones only require you to plug them into Ethernet sockets and configure settings. In some cases, you may have to work with your provider to get it done.
The key difference between a hosted and on-premise VoIP solution is that the latter requires you to procure, install, and maintain hardware and software while the former leaves all this hassle and bustle to the provider.
Setting up a VoIP phone is as simple as using the phone itself. You only have to assess your user needs, internet capabilities, and budget before you are ready to approach a prospective provider who offers a service that matches your requirements.
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