March 2, 2020
What is the Difference Between a Cloud Phone System and VoIP?

What is the Difference Between a Cloud Phone System and VoIP?

Read time:
2 Minutes, 34 Seconds

There are so many different terms in the telecom industry. It makes finding a new phone system for your business a bit of a minefield. Dodging the acronyms and trying to understand exactly what you need.

It’s fair to say that the terminology used can be confusing and what you’re looking for can become lost in the world of jargon.

Two of the most common terms in the telecoms industry at the moment are:

  • VoIP
  • Cloud phone systems

If you’re in the midst of researching telephone systems, its quite likely that you’ll have come up against these two terms at some point during your research. We’re here to describe what both terms mean, how they differ and how they work together.

What is VoIP?

First up, we’re going to talk about VoIP. VoIP stands for voice over internet protocol. VoIP is essentially, internet phone calling.

Traditionally (before VoIP was common), a business made calls using their telephone lines. Each telephone line could carry one call at once. This meant that if you wanted to make three calls simultaneously, you needed at least three lines (if not more).

However, with VoIP, your calls travel down your businesses broadband connection. VoIP calling allows your business to make as many calls as you like using your broadband line, therefore eliminating the requirement for multiple telephone lines, and saving your business money.

VoIP Diagram
VoIP Diagram

Now that we’ve got a brief understanding of what VoIP is, let’s move on…

What is a cloud phone system?

From VoIP, we move to cloud phone systems. Cloud phone systems are an ‘off premise’ telephony solution, which means that they don’t require a costly piece of hardware on site to control your calls.

Before cloud phone systems were used, a business needed a piece of hardware in their premises somewhere. This hardware is called a “PBX”. PBX’s controlled a businesses calls, sending them to the correct destination and providing each employee with their own ‘extension’ of the system for dialling.

A cloud phone system does exactly the same thing, but instead of installing a clunky piece of hardware in your office, you just use the cloud. Using a broadband connection, you can access your cloud phone system, totally eliminating the upkeep and maintenance cost of a PBX.

Cloud Phone System Diagram
Cloud Phone System Diagram

So, hopefully you’ve got an idea as to what each of these terms mean, and now we can move on to the differences between a cloud phone system and VoIP…

What is the difference between a cloud phone system and VoIP

While they both sound like they do similar things, they are actually two different technologies.

Think of it like this:

  • A cloud phone system is the brains of the operation. It controls your calls.
  • VoIP is the connection that you use to connect to your cloud phone system. It transmits your calls.

If you’re looking to upgrade to a cloud phone system, you will be using a VoIP connection without even realising it.

How do they work together?

These two technologies work in harmony together. If you opt for a cloud phone system, then you can remove your telephone lines because you’ll instead use a VoIP connection.

Think of it like a road system. If the cars on the road are your calls, road itself is your VoIP connection. At the end of the road is a traffic officer, who directs each car to its location. This traffic officer is your cloud phone system.

Both VoIP and cloud phone systems work together to provide a seamless experience for your business.

Another great benefit is that you won’t need to pay for two separate services. VoIP connections are part and parcel of a cloud phone system. Upgrading to the cloud means that VoIP comes as standard.

How can I get them for my business?

If you’re looking to upgrade to a cloud phone system, the best place to start is with your requirements. Look at your set up, and find out what your business needs. Maybe you need call recording? Or you’d like to be able to tannoy employees? Maybe you need mobile apps for remote workers? Or softphones on PCs?

Make a list of the 10 most important features, and then get in touch with us. We’ll chat through how your business works, how each feature can be implemented and then start to build the right system for you.

If you have any questions, or would like some more information about how Bytes Digital can help your business, email hello@bytesdigital.co.uk give us a call on 03331 301 021.

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