Cloud VoIP Communications

Cloud vs. Customer Location Business Voice Communications
40+ Comparisons 

 

Before you buy VoIP-voice over internet protocol, Cloud Voice, Cloud Communications, internet telephony or other telephone/PBX system we ask you to call Boulder Phone at 303-444-4687 (voip) and let us walk you through the issues without obligation to buy from us,

This is a comparison of two approaches to business voice communications today: in-office or in-the-cloud. We’ll try our best to limit the techno-babble language while listing dozens of factors involved. Traditionally, businesses had PBXs (private branch exchanges) and key phone systems which were the interface between your business and the telephone company. These systems allowed intercom dialing between users, transfers of any call, call control to limit long distance calling, billing management to track calls, voice mail messages, and more. Today, with internet telephones, users can make calls via the internet using office computers, generic IP telephones while using the bandwidth you already have for your data networking.

In reviewing more than 20 papers on this topic and drawing on two decades of experience, we have found that there is great confusion on cloud, hosted, VoIP, internet telephone, CTI-computer telephony integration and other terms used. Essentially, each of these concepts uses the internet for voice just like your web searches, cat videos, and email. That is, the same internet bandwidth “pipe” can be used for voice, data, video, web surfing and everything else. Instead of having two or more pipes for voice, data, POS-point of sale, security, FAX and other communications, you consolidate your uses into fewer of them. Separate pipes can be good for route diversity, a separate FAX line and/or an emergency when the internet and/or power fail.

Here is a running list of Cloud versus Premises based voice services. They are presented in random order as your priorities and preferences are not the same for any order we would present:
ISSUE
CLOUD
CUSTOMER
Reliability
Best Efforts
Industry Standard Guarantee
Scalability
Rapidly
Difficult
Bandwidth (1)
Same Pipe
Separate Pipes
TCO-Total Cost of Ownership
Variable
Fixed
Ease of Moves/Changes
Easy
Easy
Migration from current
Not Easy
Not Easy
Firewall
Required
Not Applicable
Regulatory compliance
Uncertain
Yes
Vmail to email integration
Easy
Easy
PC integration
Easy
Add-on
Remote Users
Easy
Easy
IT Integration
Easy
Add-on
Power
Required
Generally Built-in
International Calling
Uncertain
Integrated and Controlled
Instant Messaging IM
Built-in
Add-on
Room Video
Add-on
Add-on
Softphone
Key feature
Add-on
Mobile
Easy
Add-on
Disaster Call Redirection
Carrier-based
Carrier-based
Billing/accounting
Complex
Easier
Auto attendant
Built-in
Built-in
Future Feature Integration
Built-in
Extra
Conferencing
Built-in
Built-in
Contact Center integration
Built-in
Extra
CRM
Add-on
Add-on
FAX
Extra
Built-in
911
Not Easy
Built-in
Security
Add-on
Built-in
Phone & IT Cabling
Integrated
Integrated or Separate
WiFi
Add-on
Add-on
Cordless
Add-on
Add-on
Deskphone
Many Choices
Fewer Choices
QoS-Quality of Service
Uncertain
Guaranteed
QoE-Quality of Experience
Uncertain
Guaranteed
Speaker Paging
Add-on
Built-in
Remote Troubleshooting
Complex
Easier
Onsite Repair
Uncertain
Generally Available
Local Tech Support
Uncertain
Generally Available

Bottom-line – Every business is different with specialized needs. Manufacturing, education, hospitals, and other business environments can have very complex and even regulatory-driven requirements. Cloud or Customer Premises based voice communications are designed for specific applications based on the cost, benefit, need, and want. Each offers unified communications (UC) that have been evolving over the past 20 years and promise only to get better. With more than 500 UC providers & carriers, you can get your UC from another continent! But everything has to work across the enterprise from the desk, to the computer, to the mobile phone, to the IT integration. The critical factor in cars, mobile devices, computers, phones and other devices is getting them installed properly so that they can grow/contract and change as you do, with the ability to get them serviced in a timely fashion.

Footnote:
(1)  Bandwidth for UC is often overlooked as customers generally already have bandwidth they don’t completely use. Most UC providers leverage this expectation and let the customer figure it out when calls start to “jitter”, echo, or gargle. These QoS (Quality of Service) issues must be taken into account. Yes, UC can scale up and use that extra bandwidth but you don’t want the CEO to have a garbled call with an investor or customer.
Boulder Phone is  proud of the many business voice and cabling projects we have built for Boulder businesses with state of the art comprehensive cabling architecture that accommodates communication needs for audio, voice, data, and video both now and for years to come.

 

Email anytime david@boulderphone.com or 303-442-5500.