Voice Over IP
VoIP is a buzz word in our industry today that has many people wondering what it is, can it help me, and what do I need to have a VoIP solution?
Voice over Internet Protocol in its most general meaning is the transmission of voice communications over the Internet or other voice-packet-based networks. Taylored Systems can offer two types of VoIP: VoIP phone system and VoIP dial tone.
VoIP Phone System
With the convergence of data and voice networks, a VoIP phone system creates a unique and unprecedented ability to effectively, efficiently, and creatively accomplish the goals of a business.
A VoIP phone system looks and operates much like a traditional digital phone system on the outside, but within are a plethora of hidden opportunities and functions. The VoIP phone system allows for multi-site businesses – either on the same campus or across the world – to save costs by using their data network for one centralized phone system.
VoIP can be managed and controlled using the existing LAN and WAN rather than wiring for a separate telephone network. VoIP is ideal for remote and mobile workers. It also allows for some newer technologies to be used such as a software based “soft-phone” utilizing a computer with high speed internet connection to make and receive calls, and Wi-Fi SIP phones utilizing a Wi-Fi router to send and receive calls over the wireless internet connection, extending service range throughout an office or home.
A desk IP phone operates and looks very similar to a digital desk phone but it allows the phone system to register the IP phone as an extension off of the system rather than the wall jack. This allows for IP phones to carry the extension with the phone when it is moved from one office to another or even moved off site. Hosted phone systems and All-In-One’s are other technologies that have been developed out of the VoIP capabilities. Hosted systems are a phone system that is housed off site and managed by a 3rd party to help with costs, space issues, and freeing up time of the IT staff who would normally be responsible for maintenance and upkeep of an on-site phone system. The only equipment onsite would be a router and the IP phones. All-In-One IP phone systems are exactly what they sound like; a router, switch, firewall, and IP phone system all within the same machine. These are ideal for start-up companies or a company that is opening a new location. The switch can be used for both voice and data and can help with the management of the different networks.
VoIP Dial Tone
There are two different forms of VoIP Dial Tone: Dynamic products and Session Initiation Protocol trunks.
A dynamic product brings in a channeled internet pipe (T-1, T-3, etc.) and uses the channels to also send voice as well as data.
These products can be engineered in several different ways. One way is that a certain number of channels are dedicated for voice and when those channels are not being utilized for voice traffic they automatically revert back to data channels. Another way is that all channels have voice priority so the only limit for number of calls that can be made are based on the number channels available within the pipe. Again, in this scenario the channels that are not being used for voice are available for data transmissions.
Dial tone utilizing the Session Initiation Protocol is another form of VoIP Dial Tone. SIP is a signaling protocol that sets up and tears down multimedia communication such as voice and video calls over the internet. This is the same protocol that allows for video conferencing, streaming media, instant messaging, presence information, and online video games. It allows for voice to travel over a pure IP platform. The voice is packetized and sent over the Real-Time Transport Protocol. SIP can save costs by virtually eliminating long distance charges, utilizing one connection rather than a separate voice and data connection, and getting rid of 800 numbers by having a local presence, and those local numbers would be directed over the Internet to the main phone system.
There are some challenges with VoIP:
• Available bandwidth
• Network latency
• Packet loss
• Quality of service
Please allow us to discuss these challenges with you and how they may affect your business and the goal of implementing a VoIP solution. We have an expert staff that can assess your network using our network assessment software and our extensive knowledge of the industry to make recommendations on what will be the best way for your business to move forward.