VOIP is the latest in telecoms technology and whilst in the past it may have gotten some bad press due to broadband speeds not being fast enough and the industry as a whole being new to the product.

What is VOIP?

VOIP stands for Voice Over Internet Protocol. It essentially refers to making calls over the internet, whereas traditional telephone calls are made over copper cables.

The functionality of VOIP however has many applications and can be utilised in many ways which is where then VOIP can get a little more confusing, but don’t worry, we are here to explain it !

Some popular current uses of VOIP are:

SKYPE (software VOIP) – possibly the most well known VOIP solution mainly due to it having been around for the last 10 years and now being owned my Microsoft. Generally it is free to call another Skype user, send messages, video chat and for a set monthly fee you can call anywhere in the world for a set number of minutes or you can pay for each call on a per minute basis. Skype can be used from a computer, smartphone, smart TV or some gaming consoles.

SIP Trunking - SIP stands for Session Initiation Protocol, this essentially uses your broadband connection and with certain compatible telephones allows you to make calls over the internet. In most cases customers find that SIP is compatible with their current telephones, so in most cases, there is no major cost to upgrade. SIP Trunking is excellent if you have a company that requires immediate turnaround of new lines and phones being added (generally you can have activate or cease a new line / SIP Trunk live within a couple of hours!).

Hosted PBX – Hosted also uses your broadband connection but offers many useful options that are simply not available on traditional BT Openreach lines, SIP Trunking and other VOIP products. Hosted does not require an onsite PBX, which essentially is a box that sits within your building that handles all the operations of your telephones (how to handle calls when they come in, where voicemails are stored, what happens when no-one is in the office, etc). The benefit of not having to have an onsite PBX means less chance of it becoming faulty and also much easier to repair and upgrade to more services, this then means a significant cost decrease in maintaining your telephones. Hosted can be very easy to use and some customers choose to look after the maintenance of the system by themselves once they have had some training, although if you prefer the peace of mind, we can still look after this for you. In many cases, Hosted PBX is the ultimate in technology, cost effectiveness and reliability.

Cloud PBX – Pretty much the same as Hosted PBX, the only difference between the two is that on Hosted PBX, the PBX system sits in a datacentre (think of a large warehouse), whereas on Cloud PBX, it is all operated by some computer software that you access as simply as going to a webpage. Cloud can offer considerable savings over Hosted because there is no PBX equipment which means less space, less equipment that can go wrong and therefore a lot less cost – meaning more savings for you, the customer!


Airtime CloudAirtime SIP

Calls over Internet

Yes Yes

Call Recording & Storage

Yes Yes

Reduce Costs

Yes Yes

Keep Existing Phone System

(We offer a range of new phones that will work with Cloud)

Disaster Recovery Diverts

Yes Yes

Increase / Decrease Lines anytime

Yes Yes

Take your Phone Anywhere

Yes No
(Additional Phone Programming Required)

Automated Disaster Recovery

Yes No
(Calls can be diverted but requires someone to access web portal to activate the divert)

Call Recording

Yes No
(Additional Equipment Needed)


I have slow broadband, will VOIP work for me?

Honestly, probably not, however with the savings you should find comparative to standard telecom lines, we would look to possibly install a separate broadband connection into your building and you still may end up paying less than you are now. Alternatively there are a number of broadband upgrade solutions we can discuss with you to increase your broadband speed and take advantage of VOIP services.

Will callers be able to tell that I am using VOIP and will the call quality be bad?

When you get setup on VOIP, there are different levels of call quality you can have, these are determined by things called “CODECS”. You can have a low quality codec which at rare times may sound slightly quiet / echoing / breaking up / or delay of the speech. On higher quality codecs the call quality is very good and you are unlikely to be able to tell the difference between a standard landline and a VOIP line, some customers even tell us it sounds better!

If It’s better for me to have a high quality codec, why would a low quality codec ever be offered?

Lower quality codecs are lower quality because they require less data to work and because they use less data – you can have more of them. So for example, your broadband may only be capable of supporting 4 high quality codec lines or 10 lines on the lower quality codec.

If my broadband line goes down will my VOIP service?

This is discussed on every deal we do with VOIP and we will discuss a number of options available to you to ensure you don’t lose service should the worst happen. Normally, we would suggest 4G backup solutions so if you lose broadband connection due to a fault, the 4G data sim would kick in and still allow you to make and receive calls until the broadband service can be restored.

VOIP still sounds complicated, will training be provided on the new phones we receive?

This is completely up to you, in the sales meeting we will discuss the options available and in most cases we will be able to show you a working phone and how to use it. If you still feel that you would benefit from a training session, we can arrange this.

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