Business VoIP Featured Article

Has True Business VoIP Finally Arrived?

May 20, 2014

By Susan J. Campbell, Business VoIP Contributing Editor

The introduction of voice over Internet protocol (VoIP) suggested the Internet could be used for more than just information gathering and streaming your favorite movies. The high speed connection put in place could serve as the pipeline to all communications, whether voice, video or other messaging. In its third decade since development, VoIP has entered the business sector as a viable option to communications. Business VoIP has finally arrived.

This is the key point in a recent Nextiva blog post. An exploration of business VoIP over the last five years shows the evolution of a technology that was high in demand, yet low in its ability to deliver on that demand. It wasn’t that VoIP wasn’t available; it simply couldn’t meet the challenges of the typical office environment. Reliability and call quality fell short, keeping a number of companies from adopting the technology for fear of making the wrong impression with callers.

Fortunately, business VoIP companies saw the opportunity in the market if their solutions were improved. Over the next two years, heavy investments were made in data infrastructures and VoIP technology. Plus, with the development of data compression technology, the amount of bandwidth phones needed to provide clear reception was dramatically decreased. At the same time, companies were creating redundancies with their data and their servers to protect information and processes. These efforts and other initiatives greatly improved the performance and reliability of business VoIP.

Still, cost benefits associated with business VoIP weren’t adding up for a number of companies. Too many providers offered standardized plans to suit their own needs instead of those of the customer base. When companies grew, their lower prices were offset by the fact that every phone had to have a dedicated line. This caused a problem when employees only needed the phone a few times per week. It was time for a provider to offer a customized plan with pricing that would fit the needs of the individual companies served.

Today, business VoIP from companies like Nextiva is packaged in a way that makes sense. Companies pay only for what they need and combine their solutions to fit the activities of the user base. After all, the lower cost means nothing if it isn’t scalable and sustainable across the organization. And that lower cost delivers little value if the reliability and quality of the call is too far from the user’s expectations.

Fortunately, VoIP has come a long way. While it still trails the traditional landline in terms of reliability and quality, the flexibility it delivers to the business environment makes it worth consideration. Besides, if it’s come this far in just five years, think where it will be by 2020. It’s likely we’ve only seen a glimpse of what communications can become.

Edited by Alisen Downey


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