May 24, 2010

Hosted VoIP Vs Premise VoIP

There are 2 ways to implement a Voice over IP Phone System;

  1. Premise VoIP Installation: Own and manage on your location the telecommunications hardware and the software.
  2. Hosted VoIP Installation: Lease the Services from a VoIP Service Provider

From a technology perspective, there should not be a difference in voice quality and reliability between a Premise Based VoIP service and a Hosted VoIP service assuming the 2 alternatives have comparable hardware, software and internet connections.
Generally, the cost associated with owning voice over IP equipment (Premise solution) is not economically justified until the number of users exceeds 250. This is because the cost of implementing a Premise based VoIP solution requires a significant amount of upfront capital and the commitment of at least 2 full-time IT staff to support the system.
The primary non-economic reason for Premise Based VoIP solution is if your company has specific applications such as a CRM application, that requires customization of the VoIP phone system.  Generally, Hosted VoIP Solutions allow less customization than Premise Based VoIP solutions. Custom applications also require an additional commitment of staffing resources.
A Hosted VoIP Phone Service frees your company from the burden of managing the security of the locations that house your system. The hardware that runs a Hosted VoIP service should be housed in an ultra secure location located with redundant facilities. Among the many security features of such a location is a backup power supply that can keep the facility running for at least 15-days along with a team of technicians that monitor the systems 24/7.
A Hosted VoIP Phone System also does not require the purchase or maintenance of VoIP hardware and software and is therefore easier and much less costly to implement. IP telephone sets, a specialized router are the only hardware that is required to install Hosted VoIP phone system.
Basic Parts of Business VoIP Telecommunications Service
There are 2 types of VoIP services; Group Services and User Services.
Group Services are VoIP PBX Features that allow you to control how calls are handled by your telephone system. Group Services gives you the ability to easily and with no additional hardware, customize how calls are routed to and from your organization.
The power of Group Services lies in its ability to unify your company’s telecommunication system under a single phone system regardless of the physical location of your offices. Home Offices can even be incorporated into your telephone system.
The Auto-Attendant is an example of a Group Service. With a Voice over IP Auto-Attendant, calls are automatically routed to any geographic location within your company. Calls can even be routed automatically to a home office or a cell phone.
User Services are the VoIP Calling Plans of your phone system that your employees can customize to meet the unique requirements of their position within your organization. Examples of User Services include voice mail and call forwarding.
Pricing Considerations
Most organizations are initially drawn to VoIP because of the savings that a VoIP system offers. After using a VoIP phone system for a while, most companies realize they can gain an additional return on investment by taking advantage of the Advanced VoIP Features available with VoIP technology. 
Pricing Comparison
A cost comparison between Service Providers can be a little tricky because each Service Provider has a different way of pricing their product. Hosted VoIP Service providers generally charge a monthly fee for each “service” they provide. In addition to the monthly cost for services, some VoIP Service Providers charge for the initial installation as well as for moves, add’s and changes to your system.
One of the biggest benefits of VoIP is that with the exception of the IP phones, all repairs to AVAD Technologies system can be done remotely and with very little effort or expense. AVAD Technologies does not charge for installation, moves, add’s or changes to your VoIP system.
Unless you plan to write custom applications and are prepared to invest a significant amount of up front and ongoing capital necessary to create and secure a VoIP platform, a Hosted VoIP Service is the preferred solution.
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