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From Cobus Communications

SIP (Session Initiation Protocol) – What is it, and what are the benefits for your business? …

A ‘SIP trunk’ is a type of telephone line that connects your chosen business system direct to the Public Telephone Network via a broadband/IP connection. It allows the delivery of VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) that provides a real alternative to conventional telephone lines/circuits [Analogue/ISDN].

There are many benefits which include reliability, cost-savings, scalability, and flexibility so we’ll run through what these are, and mean, to help you decide if it’s the right choice for your business!

With SIP trunks, it is possible to cut down on costs as IP connections typically cost less than traditional ISDN lines in terms of ongoing rental costs. It’s also common to get inclusive UK landline calls and lower costs to mobile calls, with further savings relating to international call types by using SIP.

If you like the idea of unifying your communications – emails, instant messaging, voicemail, video conferencing, and telephony into a single, convenient strategy, then SIP trunking will enable you to do this, however not all telephony Switches/Systems are compatible with SIP protocols and will need to be checked and implemented by a qualified telephony engineer.

SIP trunks can help you rationalise your multi-site connections by reducing the number of connections you need along with associated maintenance costs. It is also very scalable and flexible, particularly if your business is anticipating a period of growth or downsizing as you can plan for and accommodate seasonal changes and easily update your telephony usage to accommodate business trends at different times of the year.

Businesses have worried about potential fraud via SIP trunking however if SIP trunks are implemented correctly, fraud should not be an issue. A properly configured SIP trunk will allow you to handle your own connectivity and usage parameters via dedicated/built-in IP firewalls.

SIP is 100% reliant on connectivity, and the quality (QoS, Quality of Service) of the connection that requires voice priority and optimisation. Therefore, you need to be aware of your business requirements, such as the volume of calls coming in and out and exactly what is the requirement across your LAN/WAN to support this.

So why choose SIP over ISDN?

ISDN services are typically limited to the channel/line blocks in which they are bought and are not as flexible to reconfigure as SIP trunks. Because SIP is deployed across a business’s existing WAN it means that provided the correct and appropriate bandwidth exists to handle the traffic, channels can be added or withdrawn as they are required. This flexibility reduces the amount of unused overhead that must be purchased in an ISDN model and allows the number of SIP trunks to be increased/decreased within a very short timeframe to maximise efficiency.

One of the main benefits, other than helping to lower the overall cost of the service, is derived from the fact that the phone number(s) are not tied to any physical locations; this means that calls to SIP numbers can be easily diverted to other locations and allows calls for one site to be answered by another site. SIP voice is transferred as IP (Internet Protocol), this means that customers with video enabled handsets can make video calls.

Over recent years the continued improvements in quality and resilience of high bandwidth/IP connectivity has allowed the prospect of SIP technology to become a viable solution and reality for all business types and sizes. The most important choice to make is choosing the right supplier who understands all aspects of past, current, and future technologies and one that will provide a solution that best fits your business operation and understands how to deliver it correctly and successfully!

For more information please speak to a member of our dedicated team today on 01482 225666

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