VoIP is one of the most misunderstood terms of the last 20 years.
01 Mar 2013
If you ask 20 people what “VoIP” is 15 will tell you it is placing phone calls over the internet. While they are not totally wrong it is no where near that right or that simple. “VoIP” (Voice over Internet Protocol) is a term for a technology, and is a term that paints a broad stroke like “Coke” has become a universal term for “soft drink or soda”. So what is VoIP? The simple way to describe it is “A technology that converts analog sound (your voice) to data packets and transmits them over a compatible network connection and converts them back to analog so the human ear can hear it. This process can happen in many ways and use many different systems to do this.
The phone is still used to carry voice, but what else can it do? The way calls are carried/transmitted and how calls are distributed has changed greatly. Most notably, the value added features that large companies enjoyed by bringing a PBX (Phone System) on site are now available to smaller companies on a “Hosted” platform that does not require any on-premise hardware. The result has been a big win for smaller companies that would not normally be able to afford an on premise PBX, or may have opted for a minimally configured PBX with few features. The hosted model gives smaller companies access to the full range of PBX features and functions, without the capital expense and administrative overhead.