Whenever you plan to deploy a voice over IP phone system at your office, the first thing you should consider is getting strong bandwidth of internet connection. The usual complaint that users have about VoIP phones is dropped calls and low volume that invariably occurs due to slow or poor internet connection. When you install a VoIP system, it requires strong bandwidth based on your usage along with switch and router along with battery solution for protection from power failure.
Choosing low quality equipment for VOIP is a costly mistake as it will degrade quality of calls that can cause embarrassment before clients and customers. Your office has to decide if voice and internet usage will be shared over the same network or if both will be separate as usage of VOIP phones can take up a major part of bandwidth and reduce internet search. If you have an internet based phone system then ensure that it is protected with battery backup as otherwise your phone will not work every-time there is a power cut.
Details of bandwidth required for different needs
To have a clear and uninterrupted conversation with a VOIP phone, your internet bandwidth should not be less than 88 kbps which should be through DSL cable as others are not reliable. A fixed internet connection will be ideal for both VOIP connectivity and regular internet use. The service provider must carry out tests over a couple days at different times to decide approximate bandwidth required during the day if the phone is used heavily during the day.
A small office with 3-4 business lines based on VOIP and computers that are constantly online will require around 264 kbps in upload and also download directions. To ensure that phone voice quality is stable ensure that only 50 percent of your internet bandwidth is used for the same. Quality of service is the ability of router to prioritize voice calls to data traffic and separate one from another.
Selecting right phone and equipment for the office
Digital IP Telephones – These phones appear similar to land line phones and are connected directly to internet through network cable.
Soft Phones – This phone works with special software program that runs on a laptop or desktop like a real phone with a headphone cum mouthpiece.
Wifi Phone – This works like a regular cell phone and connects to wireless router in the office.
Techniques that are used in general by voice over IP providers for office to handle both voice and data traffic are through dedicated routers for voice and data or using single internet connection for both voice and data.
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