The world is quickly waking up to the possibilities of voice over internet protocol (VoIP). The technology which allows phone calls and video conferencing to happen over an internet connection is being taken up by households and businesses alike.
There’s little wonder given the cost-saving and other benefits that VoIP provides compared to traditional phone systems. If you’ve been thinking about pulling the trigger on VoIP but aren’t sure how to go about it, this guide is for you. Read on to learn all about how to set up a VoIP server at home or in your office.
What You Need to Get Started With VoIP
The way you’ll use voice over internet protocol at home will be different from how a small business VoIP system works. That’s why the installation of the system is different for each environment. We’ll cover how to set up a VoIP system in the office first as VoIP technology offers more business benefits. Then, we’ll cover the slightly less complex issue of setting up a VoIP server at home.
Before we get to either, it’s worth mentioning the components which you may need. Some are only needed for in-office installation, and others for installation at home. Where relevant, we’ll point out which is which. Generally, though, the following are five things you need to get started with VoIP:
- An Internet Connection
It seems obvious, but you can’t make calls over the internet without an internet connection. If you’re installing VoIP at home, you don’t need to worry too much about your phone service’s connection speed. With a small business VoIP system, the strength of the connection is more important. The higher the number of calls your firm deals with, the more bandwidth needed for your VoIP services.
- A Router
Once again, this is something you don’t need to worry too much about if you’re setting up VoIP at home. For businesses, the choice of VoIP router is critical. You want an option that offers a combination of speed, security, and connectivity.
- Other Hardware
Besides a router, there are a few other pieces of hardware you may need. A computer may be required to act as a Private Branch Exchange (PBX) server in the office. This is to allow internal calls within the workplace. IP phones might also be a savvy choice. They’re not essential, though. You could go down the softphone route in the office (see below). You can also upgrade your home phone with a VoIP adapter. If you want to use traditional telephony aspects still, you may also need a VoIP gateway – service providers can usually help with this.