Hello August! I know, I know; this month brings in the dawn of fall and the end of summer. Bear with me for a moment before you start digging out your flannels and possibly growing out that hipster lumberjack beard you’ve been planning all summer, because I have good news.
This article is the second in a whole new lineup of enlightening blog posts from us at VoIP Innovations! We’ve wrapped up our month-long segment touching key points in the world of automated billing and its best practices, threw some fun, yet informative infographics at you, and let’s not forget shared that video on billing alerts!
Our writers have been to the ends of the earth gathering this critical information for you, the best part is; we’re doing it again! You may be thinking, “Oh what jargon will they send our way this time around?” Let me put it this way, this jargon sustains the life of VI itself. It’s the guts of what keeps us going. It’s most certainly the fuel to ignite the fire with your ITSP as well. What is it then? Direct Inward Dialing Numbers, otherwise known as DIDs!
So let’s bring this puppy back around full circle and kick off this series with another Top 10 List. We present to you, faithful subscriber, the Top 10 Add-Ons For Your VoIP DIDs.
We’ll begin our list of VoIP features with one of the most important add-ons offered by VoIP Innovations, VoIP E911. E911, or an enhanced 911 service, is a feature that allows your DID to make emergency calls in North America. This system not only connects the call but also automatically associates a physical address with the DID.
Once a DID is paired with a registered E911, it is then connected to a PSAP (Public Safety Answering Point). This PSAP is in your same exchange and able to recieve information regarding your location, Resulting in a transfer of this information to a computer assisted dispatch system. Once the dispatcher is alerted they will send the closet respondants to your location to provide the help you need!
Note that making emergency calls without an E911 add-on may result in fines from the FCC. Their patience is wearing thin with wireless companies who have not implemented an E911 and the penalties are becoming severe! It’s your decision. Not having an E911 option only results in putting your customers at risk by not fully complying with E911 regulation.
2 - 3. CNAM-In and CNAM-Out
Simply put, CNAM is a Caller ID, or a name associated with a number feature to add to your DID. After placing a call with someone, your caller ID information will be sent to the receiving party. If the person you are calling has a caller ID service, they will see your number. CNAM-In and CNAM-Out is when the local phone company of the person being called does what is called a CNAM dip. It’s the pairing of the name and number. For each call that comes in, the local phone company of the person being called dips into a database (CNAM database) that matches the name registered to the caller's number. As you can imagine this is quite the process. To fix it you would have to call your vendor and verify that the number is correctly registered. If the number is found to be registered correctly, the receiving party would need to reach out to their provider to have this corrected. While this can be rather difficult at times, it is generally the only way to handle this issue as most carriers would not make a change for someone that is not a customer of theirs. This is all considered to be Caller ID Storage. Who consolidates it all for you solving both sent and received calls? We do!
Need to look up your vendor’s address? Can’t find one of your sales guy’s phone numbers? Need to find out where to buy gel for that beard of yours? What’s the 411!? Sorry we had to. Add Directory Assistance to your DIDs for all of your information needs. Directory Assistance support is necessary for all of your pressing questions.
5. Email To Fax/Fax To Email
Our Email to Fax is a service that allows you to send an email to an internal or external mail server, and then becomes converted to a fax to be sent to a relative fax number. Flip that around and Fax to Email is a service that allows you to send a fax to an internal or external server, and then becomes converted to an email to be sent out to a relative email address. Pretty genius, right?
6. Call Failover
It’s always a good idea to protect the quality of your numbers. Call Failover is simply line protection or a fallback line that can be switched between two numbers manually or automatically. This ensures the quality of your numbers by protecting your DID number from dropping calls.
7. Call Forwarding
This is another fool-proof feature that we’re all familiar with. Call Forwarding is a feature used to route calls to another destination. There are many options for Call Forwarding with your DIDs such as Unconditional Call Forwarding, where a number is sent to another extension regardless. Call Forward on DND, where a number is transferred when the original extension is set to Do Not Disturb. There is even Call Forward on No Answer, when the call is transferred to another destination if the original number is unanswered after a period of time or an amount of rings.
8. Conference Lines
Conference calls; everyone makes them. If not, maybe you should implement a conference bridge to maximize your communication potential throughout your office! Don’t go wasting money on conference call providers, hold your conference calls from your own DIDs. In a conference call, callers connect to a conference bridge, a server that allows multiple people to talk to one another. Callers connect to a conference bridge via their telephones or computers. If all of the callers are located in the same office building, their calls connect to the bridge through the Private Branch Exchange (PBX), which is a miniature phone network within the office. You can utilize this feature and it's available as an upgrade to your DIDs!
I think it’s safe to say that we all have a decent understanding of SMS. SMS (Short Message Service) allows the passage of short messages, text messages, from one device to another. Our
SMS service covers the US48, is billed at a flat per message fee, and supports both inbound and outbound messaging. Service is easily managed using our industry leading BackOffice, Titanium III. Our robust and easy-to-install API3.0 web service, provides direct access to our impressive number warehouse. “Adding SMS capabilities completes a list of must-have DID features in order for us to fully compete in the wholesale VoIP market.” This quote comes directly from Mr. Jason Tapolci himself, our President here at VoIP Innovations. That’s how you know it’s good!
T.38 is a protocol used in VoIP Telephony to successfully transmit faxes over the Internet. In order to use the Fax to Email or Email to Fax DID features you will first need a DID that is T.38 capable. Boom, now you have a dedicated fax line to start sending your virtual fax and Fax to Email!
There you have it ladies and gentlemen--another top 10 list down and the begining of our next lineup of intellectual blog posts has commenced! Now you have the insight you need when decididing on what key features to add to your VoIP DIDs. Tie it all together with our BackOffice and see for yourself how easy it is to get the most out of each of your DIDs. We mean it when we say the choice and the consolidation is there for you! So dive right in, see how your company's productivity will change with these features.