Date: 27th June 2017
Digital telephony: Making the move from ISDN to SIP
Telephony remains as one of the most important channels between businesses and their customers.
However, many small firms have begun to migrate from analogue phone systems to digital, often based on ISDN (Integrated Services Digital Network). Although ISDN has performed well over the years in terms of voice quality, its higher prices and lack of flexibility have paved the way for the growth of SIP.
What is SIP?
SIP (Session Initiation Protocol) is a signalling protocol used to establish a “session” between 2 or more participants, modify that session, and eventually terminate that session. It has found its major use in the world of IP (Internet Protocol) telephony.
Different types of multimedia SIP sessions include Internet telephony calls, video conferencing and other forms of unified communications.
SIP allows users to communicate using their computers and mobile devices over the internet. It is an important part of Internet Telephony and allows users to harness the benefits of VoIP (voice over IP): one of which is cutting down costs.
The benefits of using SIP for businesses
SIP can bring many benefits to a growing business with the process of switching from ISDN to SIP being easier than you think. Key questions worth asking if you are thinking of switching include:
- How many phone numbers do you have?
- Where do those numbers lead?
- Are incoming calls queued or directed elsewhere if the line is busy?
- What kind of voicemail system does your business require?
Also, to take full advantage of all the benefits of VoIP you will need the appropriate hardware i.e. IP phones that will function with SIP.
Several factors contribute to the lower costs compared to a traditional PBX (Private Branch Exchange) telephone system, including:
- Much lower call costs with these technologies (VoIP, SIP) and calls over your wi-fi network can be free.
- Uses standard hardware so cheaper initial costs and cheaper to maintain
- No expensive vendor lock-in to expensive proprietary equipment or support options
- With the typical perpetual licensing option, there are no additional “per user” costs as you grow – licensing is based on simultaneous call capability.
- A fully-featured softphone app is available for Android and Apple Smartphones.
- You can set your status remotely, e.g. whether you’re available or unavailable to take calls.
- Your numbers can be redirected transparently to desktop or mobile phones – from the perspective of a caller, you have a single number.
- Video conferencing over the web – you can hold meetings with people in different locations, at no extra cost for up to 10 participants without having to download any software plugins.
For further information about the benefits of SIP or if you have any questions about digital telephony/VOIP then please get in touch with Afinte at www.afinite.co.uk.