VOIP Phone Systems And The Reality Behind Them
I know that everyone has heard of the latest craze ! “VOIP Phone Systems” or “Cloud Based Phone Systems” They are being sold to unsuspecting customers by a huge sales force of people that have no technical background or experience in Telecom or Networking. The installers that put in the equipment do not have to be rocket scientists and figure that the installation is just Plug-N-Play. Or as we refer to it in the Telecom industry Plug and Pray! In many cases they do not test to see if you have sufficient bandwidth. The story that is preached to customers is that they will be able to save So Much Money when in reality you will now have to upgrade your internet bandwidth and pay additional money to your ISP. On an additional note you will install these phones piggy back on your local data network which will more than likely cause anomalies with your computer network. Don’t get me wrong! there is a place for everything and VOIP phone systems have their place. In the case were you have a few small offices that you need to tie together or a small office with several off site sales staff this may work for you. BUT! They also do not tell you about possible loss of service do to denial of service attacks or ISP Routing issues.
I think the public needs to be better informed about the Pros and the Cons of jumping into a service like this and how truly business affecting it can be in the long run. I have in the past seen some of my customers move to the Cloud Base Phones and sign a one to two year contract. I am now seeing some of those old customers asking how they can move back to a premise based system like they had before because of all the issues that they had. If you are on a Cloud based system there is no accountability on the part of you provider for loss of business and down time. The are still alternatives! There are some of the smart manufacturers that have continued to make premise based phone systems and Yes, they have some Voice Over IP integration for off premise phone sets and even networking abilities to tie locations together if needed. There is also the option of refurbished equipment with these same capabilities if your looking to save some money. It is also possible to get warranties on refurbished equipment. In short, you wouldn’t get you car serviced by a lawnmower repair shop so why would you trust your Phone Service and your Business to the Internet?