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SNHU - IT-201 Computer Platform Technologies
Written by: Chris Bell - October, 2012

Using a VoIP System in Place of Phones



VoIP is an acronym for Voice Over Internet Protocol which allows for video based phones calls over the Internet. It's a booming piece of technology in companies of all sizes internally and externally. Internally, companies can have meetings and discussions in different branches without having to be there personally. Externally, companies can more efficiently conduct sales pitches with the trustworthy approach of being able to see the face of the person trying to sell you a product or service. The system breaks down voices into binary numbers and then into packets that are transferred to the other IP address. The packets are checked for errors, approved, and relayed which is why sometimes you might see small glitches while the person is talking.

If someone was running a business on their own in a home office that wanted to invest in a VoIP system I would recommend the HDX 4500 model by Polycom. It offers a 24" HD screen with high definition voice capabilities with the Polycom Siren 22 technology. This option is the most geared towards a home office as a less expensive way to appear as a business with customer service as a high priority. It was compared to the Cisco 300 series which was more than a home office would need. There was unnecessary additional hardware and it was approved for up to 24 employees. However, it may be a good fit for a company that knows they're going to be growing very quickly.

For a small business with 5 to 10 employees I would recommend the Polycom Telepresence m100 because it's a cost effective way for small businesses to video to their communications with customers. Polycom does a good job of breaking down their systems by the size of your business without over charging or offering more than what their customer needs. When comparing the Polycom system to Cisco and Avaya it overpowers them with the best offerings by size. The amount a company can afford is based on the amount of revenue they have available and Polycom does a great job of offering the best HD options with cost in mind.

Things get much more technical when getting a VoIP system for a company with 100 to 200 employees because they have departments, meetings, announcements, customers and vendors that will be utilizing the system. Cost isn't the biggest factor because even the best system won't bankrupt a 200 employee company. Here they need options such as viewing all six people in the meeting on the same screen, being able to hear each person clearly and not having any delays in transferring the voice because a poor system can possibly leave a bad impression on the company as a whole. For that reason I stayed with Polycom and chose the HDX series for a company of this size. It offers the best of the best using H-264 high profile technology, HD voice, HD video and HD content. With partners such as Microsoft, HP and IBM the HDX series is the best product I found for a large business trying to integrate a VoIP system.

There's no doubt that video is becoming a present time rather than a future technology. It's here and companies large and small need to jump on board to take advantage. Being ahead of the game is recognized by customers that your company is probably ahead of the game in other areas of business as well. VoIP isn't going away which means companies can either take the plunge now or they can wait to be a new comer when their competitors have already learned it and moved on to the next technological advancement.


References:


Nadeem Unuth. VoIP - What is VoIP? Retrieved from:
http://voip.about.com/od/voipbasics/a/whatisvoip.htm

Audio Codes. High Definition VoIP (HD VoIP). Retrieved from:
http://www.audiocodes.com/solutions/hdvoip