VoIP vs. Landlines: Which is Better for You?
These days businesses have options when it comes to telecommunications. Over the last 30 years, landline PBX systems have been the gold standard when it comes to keeping your business connected to the world. But as we progress through the digital transformation, voice over internet protocol (VoIP) is quickly replacing landlines as a more flexible and cost-effective option.
Yet, there are still some advantages to landline telecommunications systems. For businesses in rural areas that may still struggle with fast, reliable internet access, landlines are still the preferred form of business communications. Choosing the right phone system is an important decision for your business.
What is VoIP?
Voice over internet protocol (VoIP) is a communications system that relies on an internet connection to transmit communications. A VoIP system is flexible and may work with traditional phone systems, smartphones, computer software, and VoIP-enabled telephone systems. VoIP systems work by converting voice into data packets and sending them through an internet connection to a recipient. Given the flexibility of a VoIP system, employees can connect with customers from any location, including multiple office locations, remote work locations, and more.
Features of a VoIP System
In addition to the flexibility of using a telecommunications system over any internet system, there are many other benefits of a VoIP system that make it an attractive option for many businesses, like:
- Virtual Receptionist
- Automatic Call Forwarding
- 3-Digit Dialing
- Voicemail to Email
Businesses can save on human labor by utilizing a virtual receptionist feature through a VoIP phone service. This software feature can be programmed to answer calls, route recorded messages, direct calls, and provide programmed responses. If you have ever called a business and received a dial-by-name directory, this is a type of virtual receptionist service.
Another common feature employed with VoIP systems is automatic call forwarding. For example, if your sales staff frequently travels outside of the office, a VoIP system can automatically forward their calls to their cell phone with the push of a button.
VoIP systems can also provide a simple interface for speed dialing frequent numbers using a three-digit dialing setup. Imagine making your frequent contacts as accessible as 911. And while we're thinking of convenience, the technology of a VoIP line makes it simple to dictate voicemails into an email.
Pros and Cons of a VoIP System
VoIP systems are hands-down, becoming more accessible and practical for many businesses. From cost to quality, there are many upsides to using a VoIP system. A traditional PBX system can quickly become very costly as businesses often need to pay for more lines than they can utilize, and adding more lines means adding more costs. With a VoIP system, you pay for compatible equipment and an internet connection.
In most areas, with a reliable internet connection, sound quality and reliability may even be better than analog phone lines. However, that is not always the case. Businesses in rural areas without access to broadband internet may not have the same experience with a VoIP system. Another drawback to using VoIP technology is the potential for restricted emergency calls. There is no guarantee that a VoIP service will be able to support emergency calls to a 911 service. Only landlines or mobile phones that can be easily traced are typically supported on these services.
Teams Device Center is your go-to reseller for quality telecommunications equipment to keep your business contacted. Shop our equipment now.
What is a Landline Phone System
A landline telephone system is largely the same technology that was first invented in 1876. Landline telephones send communication signals through copper wires, providing a fast and reliable means of communication.
Pros and Cons of Landline Phone Systems
Over the last 150 years, we have hammered out the kinks to make a solidly reliable telecommunications system, so the reliability of a landline phone system, which works even when internet service fails, is about as reliable as it gets. You’ll also get consistent quality from one call to the next. VoIP quality can change depending on the strength of your internet connection, but with a landline, the call quality remains stable.
Despite the reliability and quality of landline technology, there are a few downsides to consider. For one, technology is becoming a bigger part of everyday business. It is only natural that our telecommunications systems would adapt to meet our advanced technology needs. This is particularly true as more people explore remote and hybrid working arrangements. Landline phone systems are also historically more expensive than VoIP systems. Companies pay for the number of lines, the number of minutes, and the type of services that they require.
What to Consider when Comparing VoIP and Landlines
Choosing the right telecommunications system for your business is a big decision. If you make the wrong choice, you could bury your business in unnecessary expenses or, worse, create unnecessary barriers between your business and your customers. Carefully review your options, including:
- Equipment Requirements
- Internet Capabilities
Take into consideration how much equipment you will need to purchase and the cost of that equipment. If you already have compatible landline telephone equipment, are you in a position to potentially replace that equipment with VoIP compatible equipment?
But don’t just look at the cost of purchasing new equipment. Compare the costs you’ll incur upfront and month after month between both options. Make sure to consider all the add-ons your business will require and factor them into your total costs.
Above all else, be realistic about your internet capabilities. Switching to a VoIP system sounds like a terrific idea until you suddenly realize that your internet connection is not as reliable as it needs to be to support your business's telecommunication needs.
And last but not least, look at the maintenance requirements of each system and how it will fit with your future growth. As your business expands, can you add lines slowly, or will you need to double your phone bill every few months?
The Bottom Line on Choosing a Phone System
The right phone system for your business is the one that fits your needs. VoIP systems are flexible and affordable and likely the technology of the future. But not every business or every area is ready to embrace VoIP technology. For many businesses, landlines still offer unparalleled reliability.
Teams Device Center is an authorized online dealer for Yealink telecommunications systems. Learn more today.