Voice over Internet Protocol, VOIP, is not a new technology, businesses have been dabbling with it for almost a decade. It’s safe to say that VoIP has become so commonplace that we hardly think about it. While it’s common, small businesses with a PBX - Private Branch Exchange - have had little choice when it comes to digitizing their systems. There is one option at their disposal however, SIP trunking.
SIP trunks blend together voice, telephone and data - Internet - connections, which allows your voice to travel over data lines. In other words: You pick up your phone, dial a number outside the office. Your call goes through the PBX - Private Branch Exchange - which tells the call where to go. The SIP picks this up, digitizes it, mashes it together with your data connection and sends your voice over the Internet to the recipient where it drops down to the original telephone lines.
There are three main components of SIP trunks
- PBX. A PBX which can switch VoIP calls to traditional lines and vice versa.
- Internet Telephone Service Provider - ITSP. An ITSP is similar to your Internet Service Provider, only they focus on digital telephone transmission. Often times, the ITSP is a subsidiary of, or a branch of your Internet Service Provider.
- SIP trunk. The SIP trunk is a device that facilitates the two above networks, and allows them to work together to send out and receive voice and video calls.
- Decreased phone bills. When you make calls, they are transmitted over data lines which cost a lot less than traditional phone lines, especially if you’re making long distance calls. You could even ditch your current phone provider, as all voice will be transmitted over data lines, freeing up funds which can be spent elsewhere.
- Don’t lose numbers. If you move offices you’ll be able to take your numbers with you, without having to pay to have them connected to the traditional phone networks.
- Calls can be easily rerouted. If your business is caught in a disaster, you can easily establish an SIP trunk in another location and have calls to your numbers routed through there.
- Don’t need to discard old phone system. Unlike VoIP, SIP trunking works with your old phone system, which means set up costs are considerably lower.