When it comes to protecting your business, many owners should at least consider the basics for security. In the United States alone, more than 50% of employers utilize some form of surveillance equipment for their employees as well as for other operations in the workplace. Users of this type of video technology cite everything from loss prevention to improving time management as rewards for implementing these monitoring systems. However, there are plenty of other advantages that come with implementing IP video technology within a business.
Topics: Video Management
Enterprise-level VoIP solutions can be had in two specific types: The hybrid IP-PBX types that can support both IP and TDM communications, and pure IP solutions, sometimes called softswitches. The latter kind has many advantages of starting afresh, and not being "bolted on" to another technology — to include such things as greater manageability, ease of deployment, greater value, and standards-based designs that ease integration into IT processes and applications.
Eventually, the hybrid approach will be as out of favor as POTS are today. As of right now, IP-PBXs are still going strong, due in large part to the basic economics of business. Many organizations see that it still makes financial sense to preserve existing investments in TDM equipment. It's the hybrid approach that allows them to do that very thing. The obsolescence of the hybrid equipment, therefore, is a ways down the road.
Topics: VoIP Solution
Happy Friday everyone! I know it’s that time of the week when you’re getting ready to close up shop and you start mentally preparing for the weekend. BUT… I want to share some great updates before you check out completely.
The first update I have to share is about some advertising we’re going to be doing. We’ve partnered with TMCnet’s Internet Telephony Magazine and the Channel Vision Magazine so if you haven’t seen our ads already, make sure you’re looking for them soon! We’re also doing some email blasts through Channel Vision that will be full of great resources for everyone in the wholesale VoIP industry.
Topics: Wholesale VoIP
Picture yourself as a small business owner whose business is growing every day. Your call volume is part of that growth but you’re realizing that your current system isn’t equipped to handle all of this growth. Now you find yourself back in the crazy phone system market trying to sift through endless options to find something that you think might work.
Have you ever found yourself in this situation? If you have, then trust me when I say you’re not alone! There are plenty of business owners who find themselves in this situation every day and it’s a business hardship that needs to be addressed. Thankfully, there are companies such as the VoIP and telecommunications review firm, Software Advice, who collect data on the VoIP and telecommunications industry so business owners in need have a place to get great information.
Stay connected with us!
Welcome back to another great Chat with Nat. In this week's post, I want to make sure that all of our readers know how to get a hold of us and stay connected with us online. We're always posting great information on our blog and our social media sites. Along with useful industry information, we're also posting important company information and exciting things that go on around our office.
To get you started on connecting with VoIP Innovations I'd like to share a few of our most popular blog posts:
With all of the amazing innovations in telecommunications, the Internet, and smart phone technology, have you ever paused and wondered "Who invented all of this stuff in the first place?" Sure, we know that Bell invented the telephone, Marconi perfected the radio, Farnsworth invented the television, and Al Gore invented the Internet (sorry ... couldn't resist that one), but who invented some of today's tech?
We're sure that it wasn't invented by injecting a golf ball with steroids, but hey, science!!
Let's part the curtain of history and take a glance at VoIP and who perfected it. And to show just how profound of a change it brought about, we'll take a look at how VoIP impacts today's business for the better. Read on and be inspired. Who knows? Maybe your invention will be the next big thing!
What Is Voice Over IP? A Recap
For those who still don't know (is there still such an animal?), VoIP, also known as IP Telephony, uses the Internet Protocol over either a private data network or the public Internet in order to transmit real-time voice signals. Bottom line, you use the Internet to make phone calls. It's attracted a lot of love because it allows users to bypass long-distance calling charges.
Okay, we all caught up? Good. Onward!
The Secret Origins Of VoIP
Voice Over IP as we know it started with Israeli-born businessman and entrepreneur Alon Cohen. Back in the distant past (otherwise known as 1989), he helped found VocalTec Inc, inventing an audio transceiver that played a big part in making VoIP a reality.
Cohen's company, VocalTec Communications, was the first company to offer Internet phone services, and in 1996 VocalTec became one of the first successful Internet IPOs. Technically, VoIP was born in 1995, when VocalTec's product, InternetPhone, let computer users call each other by using their systems, a microphone, and speakers.
Have you ever seen those commercials on cable television for the MagicJack device, which lets you make phone calls by using the Internet connection? The commercials were usually sandwiched in between ads for the George Foreman grill and ShamWow. That's a VoIP system right there. If you use Skype or FaceTime, then that's using VoIP as well.
Incidentally, VocalTech became part of MagicJack back in 2010. These days, VoIP is rapidly replacing POTS (Plain Old Telephone System) as the go-to method of telecommunications.
The advent of VoIP into the world of business has resulted in some game-changing advantages for companies of all sizes. First and foremost, VoIP has slashed long-distance costs, a very significant expense for companies that conduct a lot of business outside of their home state. This savings has allowed smaller companies to enjoy the same communications advantages as the big corporations, all while not having to shell out money that the former doesn't have due to a smaller operating budget. This has made for a more level playing field.
Businesses using VoIP also have enjoyed a decreased risk of missing calls, any one of which may represent lost potential income. Using VoIP's "Find Me/Follow Me" feature means that employees don't miss a call from a client since a call to a designated number is now easily and smoothly redirected to an alternate number (e.g. a call to a desk phone gets shunted to a cell phone). So more people are talking to each other than ever, and doing more business.
Finally, VoIP is giving businesses a greater range of choices when it comes to how they want to communicate. For instance, VoIP offers the option of turning voice messages into text and sending them to e-mail boxes. So VoIP is bringing greater flexibility to customers.
There's a lot more to VoIP and its advantages, everything from its ease of expandability when a company grows, to disaster recovery. To sum it up, VoIP enables businesses of all sizes to take advantage of the same technology (and the benefits it brings) in a very affordable manner. Now that you know where it comes from and what it can do, all that's left is acquiring it if you haven't done so already.
Byline: John Terra has been a freelance writer since 1985. He tends to avoid buying stuff from television pitchmen.
If you're intersted in learning more about the wonders of VoIP and telecommunications, take a look at our white paper on VoIP E911!
Happy Friday everyone! I know everyone is excited to head out of the office for their three day Labor Day Weekend, but before you do, we have some announcements to make. Our office and Porting Department will be closed on Monday, but our Support Team will be available from 10am to 6:30pm EST. Please remember that your first point of contact with our Support Team should always to be open a ticket through your BackOffice account. If you need to reach support after you’ve submitted your ticket, you can reach them by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 877-478-6471.
In last week’s Chat with Nat I mentioned that we had some Number Porting Specials coming up for our customers. Here are those details I promised: For the entire month of September we’ll be offering discounts for our current customers who have and have not ported numbers with us. These are truly some great deals and we don't want you to miss them! You should have received an email from us that has all of the details in it. If you haven't received that email yet, please contact one of our VoIP Consultants and they'll get you all the information you need.
Topics: Chat with Nat
Happy Friday and welcome to this week’s Chat with Nat! Today I have some really important updates to talk about and we know our customers are going to love them. I want to start off by mentioning a customer appreciation promotion that we’re starting next week. Because our customers are so loyal and fantastic, we’re offering some really good number porting specials. You’ll be hearing all of the details next week!
As you know, we launched our Hosted Billing Platform in June and it was designed to be the perfect billing solution for our customers. There is already a built-in tax solution, but we’re getting close to having both SureTax and Compliance Solutions Inc (CSI) integrated into our Hosted Billing Platform as well. When this is completed, resellers will have the ability to rate the taxes for their services. We’ll be keeping you updated on this process as it moves along, but if you have any questions about our Hosted Billing Platform in the meantime, please contact one of our experienced VoIP Consultants
There's a reason why accidents are called accidents, and not "deliberates". You don't plan to have an accident; they happen at the whims of fate or when the stars align just right (or wrong). And since you can't plan an accident, then you have to settle for planning for what to do when a disaster strikes your business. Maybe it's a natural disaster, or maybe it's a failure of the infrastructure (burst pipes, electrical fire), but whatever it is, a prudent business has a recovery plan set up to best lessen the impact of the disaster and get back up and running in the shortest time and with minimal fuss.
But in this grand plan, have you considered the value of VoIP in expediting recovery? If not, consider changing that, and the first step is to read on and see how this awesome communications technology can make life easier in the aftermath of a setback.
(VoIP can point the way towards a faster recovery from disaster.)
A Quick VoIP Overview
For those not familiar with it, VoIP stands for Voice over Internet Protocol, and offers telephone communications delivered over the Internet. It's also called broadband phone service, IP telephony, or voice over broadband. It's an excellent unified communication package, which combines phone calls, faxes, e-mail, voicemail, and Web and video conferences.
Versatility Offers Flexibility
One of the biggest selling points of VoIP is that it's a system that brings together many functions, combining Internet, voice, e-mail, and more into a single useful entity, and it's that versatility makes VoIP a key element in disaster recovery.
For instance, say you had to leave your building in the face of an impending disaster. You can access your VoIP system via a remote Web connection and reconfigure your staff at a different, safer location, thereby minimizing disruption due to downtime.
Another VoIP feature that helps expedite disaster recovery is the ability to unplug VoIP phones from the old location and plug them in at a different location, provided you have access to a high-speed Internet connection. This is a valuable thing at your disposal if, once again, you need to evacuate your building (though presumably with some degree of warning; perhaps in the wake of an advancing tornado or hurricane).
The one big takeaway from this is that uninterrupted communications is the key to expeditious disaster recovery. With communications established, you can use VoIP to keep everyone in contact, continue conducting business with customers, and accessing/restoring your data which is backed up off-site, preferably on a cloud server.
You DO have your data backed up off-site, right?
People Don't Plan To Fail, They Fail To Plan
A successful disaster recovery is characterized by minimal disruption of operations. If use of your building is suddenly denied to you due to a disaster or other harmful incident, you need to have a coherent, realistic disaster recovery plan on hand, crucial data backed up, and an alternate site where operations can continue until the crisis is over. Bear in mind that there are some disasters that hit so suddenly that you really have no chance to put an elaborate plan into play. It's wise if you have that alternate site already chosen, preferably equipped with that high-speed Internet connection, and VoIP phones.
Incidentally, if your business doesn't use a VoIP system yet, you should reconsider that. VoIP is growing, while in turn, analog is dying. Food for thought.
There's no way that your business can be 100% disaster-proof, but bringing VoIP into your DR plan will certainly help lessen the blow.
Byline: John Terra has been a freelance writer since 1985. He writes for MediaShower.com, covering a wide range of technical topics.
If you're looking for more assisiance on developing a disaster recovery plan, please contact us today to talk with one of our VoIP Consultants!
As everyone makes their way home from ITEXPO, we wnat to say that we had a fantastic time there. Every time we go to the show we walk away knowing that we were able to connect face-to-face with our current customers and meet new ones. It's a great opportunity for us to learn how our customers are using our services and get their feedback on it so we can make it better for them. Our customers are what drive our business and with every new service we develop, we are thinking how this is going to impact our customers in a tremendous way.
If you were able to stop by and visit us we hope you enjoyed chatting with us about our End User Portal and Hosted Billing Platform. If you want to learn more about what exactly those two services are all about, then check out this blog post where we explain both of them.Take a look at some of the pictures from the show!