Business VoIP Featured Article

Florida Businesses Join Cable Cutting Efforts, This Time with Phone Cords

August 01, 2016

By Steve Anderson, Contributing Writer

Normally when we hear about cable cutters, we refer to households which have cut off connections to cable television in favor of online options like Hulu, Netflix or YouTube. That development has expanded somewhat as many homes go to wireless-only options for phone service, and a new report suggests that Florida businesses are increasingly getting in on departing from standard phone service in favor of business voice over Internet protocol (VoIP).

Numbers from the Florida Public Service Commission underscored the development, revealing that landline business connections were down 15 percent from 2014 to reach about 1.9 million in 2015. That number is down almost half—40 percent—from the numbers in 2011 as well, suggesting that a lot of businesses were proceeding to business VoIP.  While not all of it is directly connected to business VoIP and similar services—some of it is a move to wireless-only options, and some of it is likely related to business closures or market departures—the report notes that “much” of the decline is connected. The report also noted that residential landline use saw a similar drop in users, as the number of such users in 2015 was 1.4 million, down as much as 52 percent when compared against 2011's numbers.

For wireless services, however, growth was on the rise. Federal Communications Commission (FCC) numbers put the total number of wireless handsets in Florida at about 19.9 million in December 2014, up a million over just December 2013's numbers. With mobile phones also providing 72 percent of voice services in the state, the end result suggests a lot of businesses are moving away from landline towards several other options.

It's not surprising to see businesses make that jump. After all, business VoIP offers a variety of services with it that are either not available at all via landline or only available with substantial expense. Throw in the reduced long distance and international calling rates and the value of VoIP becomes clear. With all of these cost savings in store, why wouldn't businesses make that jump? Sure, there are reasons to keep a landline around; the security factors, both for calls being made and the ability to make calls in general, are important, and people like knowing that the landline phone will always be active even in a power outage. Considering the cost savings, though, it may prove worthwhile in the long run to drop the landline, go to VoIP, and use the cost savings to buy a backup generator, getting the best of both worlds.

Business VoIP's value is considerable indeed, and businesses are taking advantage of it in ever-increasing numbers. The end result is what we're seeing in Florida, a development that's likely being mirrored as we speak in other states.

Edited by Alicia Young


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