VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol), put simply, delivers your phone services over your data network connection (which may also be your Internet connection), allowing you to make calls anytime and anywhere from a client device. Here is your guide to understanding and choosing a VoIP solution.
Understanding VoIP and SIP
As mentioned above, VoIP, delivers your phone services over your data network connection (which may also be your Internet connection), allowing you to make calls anytime and anywhere from a client device. SIP (Session Initiation Protocol) is the internet standard for use by Voice over IP systems.
VoIP systems running SIP can be based either on premise or from a hosted cloud service, using your data network connection to carry voice and data between you and your customers and suppliers.
What do I need to look for to select the right VoIP solution?
1. Voice Quality
Unfortunately, low-cost Internet services have no guarantee of quality. You can be competing for your share of bandwidth with other Internet users sharing your provider’s infrastructure.
VoIP is real-time and therefore cannot suffer sub-standard Internet performance, such as frustrating drops in quality or garbled voices.
To ensure a smooth transition from ISDN to VoIP you need advice on getting the right connection for your organisation’s needs.
2. Quality of Service (QoS)
Using QoS configurations on your Internet connection allows you to give time-sensitive applications like VoIP priority over non real-time applications like email.
QoS will prioritise your VoIP traffic behind the scenes, giving you less risk of interruptions of your voice service by other traffic. This can mean running all your services on the one converged connection.
QoS however can only help to a point – too much traffic will reduce its effectiveness. When the data traffic is too much for QoS, it’s time to look at either a dedicated connection for VoIP or a faster connection if you continue to run a converged Internet service.
3. Private Data Network versus an Internet connection
A key decision for the success of your transition to VoIP is on whether you should connect a private data connection to your SIP provider or run your VoIP “over the top” of your existing Internet.
For businesses with low call volumes an Internet-based solution may be sufficient, but for most businesses the lower-risk option is to keep your calls off the Internet.
By having your voice data connection and SIP service provided by the same provider, your call data remains on “private” data networks, without having to exit out and over the Internet, where service levels are never guaranteed and the risks for disruption are greater.
As an example, Diamond IT provides SIP trunks through our Diamond Internet and Networks (DNet) voice network connections, allowing you to access your voice services directly from your on premises PBX or DCloud server without having to traverse the Internet.
4. Number Porting
Do you want to keep your business phone numbers?
Retaining your organisations phone numbers when transitioning to VoIP is a key consideration. This is known as number porting, where you keep your existing numbers when changing providers, ensuring minimal disruption to your business.
You’ll need to declare your intention to keep your phone numbers early in the conversation, as different options are required in the ordering of new services to include number porting.
With the introduction of Internet-based technologies, the humble fax is disappearing from our workplaces.
However, for some businesses, the fax is still an important part of operations and several cloud-based fax services have emerged to meet this need.
6. Do I have to use NBN services?
No. For business-class Internet services, there is a range of options, with business-grade services supplied by NBN being only one of these.
While NBN services can do the job under limited circumstances, a business-grade fibre service provides the best results for both performance and reliability.
Diamond IT has our own Internet and private data network service known as DNet.
Diamond IT can help you transition to VoIP
We have experience in what works best from helping many of our existing customers through this process.
We have regularly been able to find cost savings for our customers, due to our specialisation in analysing complex carrier services and plans.