Unless you’ve been offline for a few years, you’ve likely heard about VoIP by now. As a business owner, you could benefit from learning the difference between VoIP vs a landline for business. By switching to VoIP, your business can save money and enjoy other great benefits.
Once businesses compare VoIP vs a landline, they rarely want to go back to the previous service. While antiquated landlines still have a few helpful features, they are simply unable to match the higher security and technology of VoIP.
Determining which system you want to use depends on your company’s goals and budget. In the long run, your decision could have a major impact on how well your business operates.
What Is VoIP?
VoIP stands for Voice Over Internet Protocol. It is a system where your phone services are provided through the internet as opposed to standard phone lines.
As long as your internet is reliably fast, you can use your connection to get phone services directly through your computer and other devices. Rather than debating VoIP vs a landline for business, you can simply choose the simplest, most secure option. Some businesses also choose to have VoIP and landlines so they can have access to common landline services like 911, 411, and phone directory listings.
Originally, VoIP was created back in 1995 and was designed to help people save money on international and long-distance phone calls. The first company to offer VoIP services was known as VocalTec.
During the next two or three years, VocalTec began creating internet voicemail options and improved internet phone software. In 1998, the company released a phone-to-phone and computer-to-phone feature for VoIP.
While the uptake was low at first, people started to realize the VoIP vs landline cost benefits and other advantages. By transferring information over IP, callers could spend less money and have higher quality phone calls. By 2002, 25% of voice calls were made using VoIP.
Companies like Skype took VoIP to the next level by adding video chat to their product line in 2005.
VoIP can be transmitted through computer software, traditional phones, specific VoIP-enabled phones, and smartphone apps. It works by breaking the sound of your voice into individual digital packets. Basically, your voice is packed away in digital envelopes before it is sent to the other caller.
These packets can be transmitted through the internet to recipients around the world. VoIP reliability stems from the fact it relies on the internet to transmit the call.
When considering the advantages of VoIP vs a landline, you should think about the kind of features you want. With VoIP, you can typically get functions like automatic call forwarding, a virtual receptionist, voicemail to email, and three-digit dialing.
All you need to do to get started with VoIP is get the right equipment and software. If you plan on using an adapter, you will need a compatible landline phone. You can also use VoIP with a computer or smartphone if you choose.
What Is a Landline?
To finish deciding between VoIP vs a landline for business, you have to consider the features your old phone offers as well. Originally, the first phones were primarily iron, copper coils, and magnets. Until telegraphs connected different cities and buildings, you had to manage telephone wires on your own.
Alexander Graham Bell patented the first phone in 1876. He had originally created it because he was trying to improve the telegraph. Because of his invention, it was now possible to send multiple messages over the same wire at once.
By 1877, the world’s first telephone lines were constructed. The uptake of the new invention gradually increased until there was one phone for every 10 Americans prior to World War I. By World War II, that number doubled as there was one phone for every five people.
In 1998, the United States finally had one phone for every American across the country. Today, many phone numbers are linked to smartphones instead of traditional landlines. As more companies debate VoIP vs a landline, landlines have started becoming less popular and are quickly becoming a thing of the past.
A landline is basically connected to an optical fiber or metal wire telephone line. When you talk into your landline, your voice is sent over the wire. In comparison, mobile phones use radio waves to send communications.
While VoIP cost is lower, a few locations around the world are simply unable to use VoIP because they still lack stable internet connections. If you live in a region with constant blackouts and poor electricity grids, your business may need to use landlines instead until that improves. Landlines aren’t impacted by internet and power outages, which is why they are a popular choice in developing parts of the world.
VoIP vs Landline Pros & Cons
One factor you should consider is VoIP vs landline security. While traditional landlines are slightly more secure, dependable VoIP security is generally excellent as well. Landlines are hard to hack, which is the main reason why they are typically viewed as being more secure.
With VoIP security, your calls are only as secure as your IT infrastructure and the provider you use. If you have a secure internal system, your calls will be secure. Because of this, it is a good idea to get IT professionals to check out your infrastructure before you switch from a landline to VoIP.
The VoIP cost is one of the main reasons why businesses switch to this popular alternative. When your calls occur over the internet, you don’t have to pay per minute or for long-distance calls. You only have to pay for your internet access and any additional features you require.
Traditional phone lines can get expensive, especially if you are paying for multiple phone lines and features like call forwarding. If your business is on a budget, VoIP can help reduce these costs. Even international phone calls are generally free through most VoIP services.
The nice thing about landlines is you can still use them when there is no electricity or power. However, this usually isn’t a major issue for businesses. If the power and internet are out because of a natural disaster or extreme weather event that cuts the power, there is a good chance you won’t be open anyway.
In general, VoIP reliability is quite good. Even if you are out of the office, you can use VoIP from anywhere in the world as long as you have internet access. Plus, the digital design of VoIP means you can enjoy having a reliable, consistent connection.
While landlines have reasonably good sound quality, VoIP quality is generally better thanks to ever-improving technology. In most cases, your VoIP call will have a much clearer sound, making it easier to hear and understand the person on the other side of the conversation.
However, this is only true if your internet connection is reliable. If your connection is as slow as dial-up, it will be hard to get a consistent sound quality. To achieve the best sound, you need to have strong bandwidth and a great internet connection.
Are You Deciding Between VoIP vs a Landline for Your Business?
If you are researching VoIP vs a landline for business, there are many factors you should consider. For example, you will need good internet, decent bandwidth, and the right devices in order to use VoIP for your company needs. Additionally, your IT team should check your tech security before you switch communication systems.
Fortunately, you don’t have to do all of this work alone. If you are uncertain about VoIP vs a landline, the team at Makios can help. You can call us today at (915) 217-2500 to find the right VoIP solution for your business’s unique needs.