VoIP (Voice Over Internet Protocol) and Your Small Business
Many small- to medium-sized businesses are looking to VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) for their communications needs, mainly to reduce costs and to combine network features into an all-inclusive communications package.
In an equipment test, businesses were asked to test five systems: the NetVanta 7100, the Quick Edition, the Smart Business Communications System, the PBXtray and the Business Communications Manager 50, all from various vendors. Businesses were asked to determine what features were the most important when shopping for a cost-effective VoIP system for less than 100 users. Test parameters were focused on the voice component of unified communications systems.
Businesses chose the Quick Edition as the winner based on the following:Simplicity of deployment, use, adding users and of management. The ability to use an existing networking infrastructure Speedy of deployment Easy-to-use management interface
It's understandable for a small business to prefer a VoIP system that is simpler, especially if the business has a small number of employees or doesn't have the luxury of having a dedicated IT person.
While it was hard for businesses to choose between the Smart Business Communications System and the NetVanta 7100 products, they found NetVanta's browser interface and management interface to be pluses. The Smart Business Communications System also scored well with its network monitoring capabilities, ability to work offline and greater add-on features and services.
In summary, if I were a business owner, I would still be reviewing the capabilities and functions of many systems, since every business is going to have different needs and preferences. While VoIP is not a one-size-fits-all telecom product, hopefully businesses will not ask themselves "Should I use VoIP?", but instead ask, "Which type of VoIP should I use?"
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