IP telephony is one of the great by-products of the Internet. The technology has seen a steady evolution over the years, and will continue to grow and become an integral part of our daily lives, much like incumbent telephony systems have. Both consumers and businesses stand to benefit enormously from this new medium of communication.
With voice alone no longer a sufficient medium for communications, consumers and businesses demand a media-rich way of interacting that includes, video, file sharing, presentation and other functions.
The increasing pace at which we navigate our daily lives calls for a more effective way of communication and IP voice technology is equipped to match the demand.
IP telephony offers CIOs a means with which to converge current telephony systems with new VOIP offerings, allowing for the phasing out of old technology out over time. Another attractive feature is that implementation of IP telephony is relatively simple.
Here is how IP based telephony takes communications to the next level:
- Improved productivity by means of wider offerings.
- Low cost of implementation
- Integration with existing LAN and WAN hardware, including WiFi
- Significantly reduce telephony expenditures.
- Ability to integrate with incumbent telephony systems.
- Provides greater mobility to staff
- Maintenance cost reduction.
- Less hardware dependencies for IT departments to worry about
- More personalisation features available to users
- Much greater mobility making staff more accessible
IP provides flexibility and scalability
Large companies with many satellite offices stand to benefit from the immediacy provided by IP telephony that will see the business function more efficiently. VOIP protocols like Session Initiation Protocol (SIP) allow for integration with a wide range of other applications, thereby extending the features of applications such web browsers, email clients and others
With file sharing capabilities, content is sharable while in-conversation, adding much greater context to discussions between colleagues. Enterprises typically run astronomical telephone bills and network managers could well use the saving to better spend their budgets; while benefitting from the reduced maintenance time and effort also.
CIOs who are looking at replacing their telephony systems are well-advised to investigate the wealth of offerings IP telephony presents. Most large networks are pretty much “VOIP ready” with hardware that can facilitate the use of the technology. Increasing Internet speeds and lower rates make VOIP an “almost too good to resist” option and with the continuing development of VOIP products, businesses will stand to continually benefit from it as it matures.