VoIP Phone Call FAQ's

These are the most popular questions customers ask us regarding VoIP phone calls:

Q: Is my current telephone system VoIP call compatible?

A: YES.You do not need a special phone system to make cheap VoIP calls. VoIP phone systems allow you other features above and beyond cheap phone calls.They allow you to link multiple sites, reduce staff, improve productivity.Read more about the benefits of VoIP phone systems.

Q: Can my current provider give me VoIP calls?

A: Many of the traditional carriers now offer VoIP calls. The problem is that many of their plans are designed for home applications and are not up to delivering the quality and reliability demanded by business. We deal with a range of different VoIP carriers and providers - ask us which service we recommend and why.

Q: Do I need a phone system to make VoIP phone calls?

A: NO. Vendors like Skype provide VoIP calls for single phones.

Q: Do I need a VoIP phone handset to make VoIP phone calls?

A: YES. You cannot use a normal handset to make VoIP phone calls (without a phone system). Bottom line is you will need to purchase a VoIP telephone handset.

Q: What is VoIP call quality like? I’ve heard some negative reports…

A: A: VoIP call quality depends on the provider, the Quality Of Service and your internet speed. If you tick all 3 boxes then a VoIP phone call can be almost indistinguishable from a normal phone call. If you don't cover these bases then you can experience "latency", call drop outs and below average call quality.

Q: How do I guarantee VoIP call quality?

A: You need a high speed quality internet connection and high Quality of Service Routers (QOS) with Voice Prioritisation. Data and Voice both travel across your data network under a VoIP solution. It doesn’t matter if a data packet gets sent 1 second slower but if your voice packet is slower then your phone call will have lag and sound distorted. This effect is called VoIP “Latency”. QOS routers make sure your voice calls get delivered on time so you get the call quality you need. For the technical people, according to a white paper from Brooktrout Technology, latency starts to affect phone conversations when it exceeds 150 milliseconds each way, and is unacceptable when it exceeds 450 milliseconds (nearly half a second).

Q: What happens if my VoIP Network goes down?

A: If your supplier doesn’t allow for redundancy then you will not be able to receive or make phone calls.
When setting up any VoIP solution it is an excellent idea to have redundancy measures in place and is a MUST for phone critical business.

Q: Can a person using a regular phone call me on my VoIP telephone?

A: It depends on the type of VoIP service you’re using and whether you have a “private” VoIP number or a “public” Direct-In-Dial (DID) number. A private number is normally provided on the lower cost VoIP services which allow you to ring out to regular phone numbers but only receive calls from VoIP users on the same provider as you. Many VoIP service providers also offer a DID number (usually by paying a monthly fee). This will give you a public telephone number and you can make outgoing calls and also receive calls from any type of phone.

These are the most popular questions customers ask us regarding VoIP phone systems:

Q. What is an IP PBX?

A. An IP PBX is a complete VoIP phone system that provides telephone calls over IP data networks (the internet). All conversations are sent as data packets over the network.

VoIP technology gives you advanced communication functions while providing the significant scalability and robustness that all businesses seek. The IP PBX is also able to connect to traditional PSTN lines via an optional gateway - so upgrading day-to-day business communication is quick and easy!

Your company doesn’t need to disrupt your external communication infrastructure and operations. You can even keep your regular telephone numbers. This way, the IP PBX switches local calls over the data network inside your business and allows all users to share the same external phone lines.

Q: Is my current phone system VoIP compatible?

A: Unless your phone system is only a few years old the answer is NO. YOU can get cheap VoIP phone calls on your current system but you won’t get any of the benefits of a new VoIP phone system.

Q: Do I need to change my broadband service for VoIP phone systems?

A: The speed of your data service has a direct impact on the call quality. If you have a basic internet connection then VoIP phone calls will probably sound awful. Ask your data provider if your service is up to scratch for VoIP.

Q: What is a managed or hosted PBX?

A: This is where you do not actually have a phone system in your premises. You have VoIP handsets only. These VoIP handsets are controlled by a selected provider in their offices. You do not own, or control, this type of phone system.

Q: What is a premise based VoIP PBX?

A: This is where you have a normal VoIP phone system with a control box, or main equipment (ME), mounted on the wall. You then have handsets which can be digital phones, or VoIP phones, connected to this main equipment. You control this phone system, are not reliant upon a provider and you can own it.

Q: What are the benefits of a premise-based VoIP PBX vs. a hosted PBX?

Hosted solutions can be slightly cheaper, are managed offsite by your chosen provider, but you can’t administer your own phone system and need to rely on your provider for everything. If your provider goes down then you also have NO Operational phone system.

Premise-based solutions on the other hand, allow you to administer your own phone system - you control everything. They are more reliable but can be slightly more expensive if you choose VoIP handsets with the solution. For more in-depth information please see Benefits of VoIP phone

Q: How do I guarantee VoIP call quality?

A: You need a high speed quality internet connection and high Quality of Service Routers (QOS) with Voice Prioritisation. Data and Voice both travel across your data network under a VoIP solution. It doesn’t matter if a data packet gets sent 1 second slower but if your voice packet is slower then your phone call will have lag and distorted sound. This effect is called VoIP “Latency”. QOS routers make sure your voice calls get delivered on time so you get the call quality you need. For the technical people, according to a white paper from Brooktrout Technology, latency starts to affect phone conversations when it exceeds 150 milliseconds each way, and is unacceptable when it exceeds 450 milliseconds (nearly half a second).

Q: Do I need extra equipment beyond the phone system?

A: Read the question above. You will need to check the routers you’re currently running and ensure they offer QOS. If you’ve only been using your routers for data then the odds are you will need to upgrade your routers.

Q: What happens if my VoIP Network goes down?

A: If you have no redundancy with your phone system then your entire phone system will be dead! You will not be able to receive or make phone calls.

When you set up a VoIP phone system it is an excellent idea to have redundancy measures in place. If you keep a couple of normal phone lines active then your system will automatically switch to them in the event of a problem with your data network. This is a MUST for phone critical business.

Q: Can I scale the phone system?

A: Most VoIP phone systems will allow you to scale, just like a normal phone system. Make sure you let us know how much expansion you want to allow for so you get the right solution for today and tomorrow.

Q: If I have 2 sites do I need a VoIP phone system in each location?

A: It is up to you. YOU can:

  • Have a VoIP phone system each site
  • Have a VoIP phone system in site 1 and only VoIP handsets in site 2 Option 1 is the preferred solution because it is totally reliable across a VPN but it often comes down to cost for customers. Both solutions will achieve the same results. - Ask us to price up both options for your business.