Being contacted via telephone is still the most popular way for people to get in touch with a business. Therefore, having the best telephone service provider in Oakland, CA is still important and beneficial to your company. You will always want a service that is not only reliable, but affordable for your needs. A business phone service provider should offer all the different features that you will need to run your business, so it is important to make your decision carefully before deciding on what phone company you are going to go with. Evaluate the different service types that each provider offers. When you are deciding, you'll be faced with two choices, these being either a traditional analog phone service or a VoIP service. They both have different features so it is important that you understand the distinctions. Compare these two Oakland, CA business providers below before making your final decision.
VoIP Phone Service: How Does it Work?
VoIP stands for voice over Internet protocol. This type of phone service has been in use for more than a decade but has only become mainstream in the past few years. Many businesses have decided to try something new and get rid of their PSTN service. New companies, particularly start-ups, are also more likely to try VoIP phone service for their communication needs with their companies. Calls are simply carried through the company Internet provider and are exactly the same as when you use a traditional line. However, since your Internet will be used to conduct business calls, you will want to make sure your connection is strong and secure. If you would like, use our Wirefly Internet Speed Test to make sure you have dependable VoIP call quality.
The biggest difference when it comes to VoIP and PSTN service is the way the calls are carried through each one. A PSTN service still uses an analog signal to deliver calls. With a VoIP service, all calls are digitized and are sent through an Internet service provider instead. Using the Internet to carry calls is much more affordable than using a traditional analog service, so making and receiving phone calls costs less. This is especially helpful for any business that has to make a lot of long distance or international phone calls for their company. Many VoIP providers offer flat rate packages that are specifically for making long distance calls so their customers do not have to worry about huge rate increases on their bills every month.
With a VoIP service in Oakland, CA, you can also request every type of feature that you would get with a PSTN phone service. You are probably used to features such as Caller ID and call forwarding, and these are basic features that most companies offer. You can also put in multiple extensions, have remote access to your voicemail and enjoy fax to voicemail when you choose a VoIP service provider. Just ask your provider when you set up your lines about all the extra features they supply.
How to Choose the Right VoIP Service Provider
Since VoIP has become more mainstream in Oakland, CA, there are more and more companies popping up all over that offer their services to consumers. Use this to your advantage, as each company will have different features and rates that you can choose from.
You'll want to carefully consider what you want for your business first. Think about the number of extensions you will need, the features that your company will use the most, if you plan on expanding your company any time soon and what your budget for phone service is.
From there, consider the different companies in your area that offer VoIP phone services. Look at the features they offer and make sure they have what you want. Their prices and packages will be different, so make sure you find one that best suits your needs. However, you will want to make sure the company itself is reliable. Paying for cheap VoIP phone service won't be worth it if the company you choose has terrible customer service.
What is Traditional Phone Service?
With traditional phone service, your calls will be carried over the PSTN, a nationwide system of cables, satellites, mobile networks and telephone lines. This analog system has been around for nearly a hundred years and it was the first of its kind when it first started. Using a PSTN telephone service in Oakland, CA can be very expensive because of the size of the infrastructure involved and the cost of maintaining it.
If you plan on sending data over long distances a PSTN service might not be the best choice, as it is an analog system and as such, it has trouble sending data across long distances. This happens because the data will stop at different locations while being transmitted, not does this make it unreliable in long-distance transmissions but it also becomes expensive very quickly, as the data passes through different equipment that is most likely owned by different companies. Currently a lot of the network is digital; however, what is called “the last mile' –the connection between the local central office and the customer– continues to be analog.
PBX and the Analog Phone System
Most Oakland, CA companies use a PBX, or private branch exchange, to route calls that are received within their office. When you set up a business phone service, the PBX is what allows the users to enjoy the different call features, such as voicemail, caller ID, multiple extensions and more.
The PBX in a traditional PSTN phone system may be located at a remote location or at the user's premises. But no matter where it is, an analog PBX is expensive. A complete business phone system which uses a PBX will need countless types of hardware that the business owner must purchase themselves. This investment may start at $1,000 and up. Not only that, configuration and maintenance will be a separate cost, which could run you a $100 an hour or more.
Upgrading a traditional PBX in Oakland, CA can be difficult and expensive. Many of the PBX systems only support a small amount of lines. This will become a problem if your business becomes larger and you need to add more extensions. You'll end up having to pay for more hardware to accommodate your growth, as well as the service hours to install them.
A PBX may also experience issues and breakdowns, much like other types of electronic hardware. This could result in expensive repairs and hardware replacement costs if you have a problem with your PBX. If your PBX becomes obsolete, you'll also be responsible for replacing it, which could conceivably occur every few years. This could end up costing you hundreds of dollars over time, plus the aggravation of having to have a costly service team come in.
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