Discover the most frequently asked Phone system questions
What equipment do I need to use VOIP?
Necessary VoIP equipment can be extremely limited, allowing users willing to reap the benefits of voice over IP such as cheaper calls, mobile office, media blending to do so with a simple installation.
For a typical home-use installation, a router may or may not be needed. VoIP equipment consists of an IP phone, or a traditional phone with a ATA adapter. A third option is the soft phone, a program turning PCs into phones. A headset will be almost compulsory to keep conversations private.
An enterprise network requires additional components to this basic VoIP equipment. An Internet protocol private branch exchange (IP PBX) system consists of phones, a PBX server, a gateway, and several lines. The server is basically a computer, with or without user interface, display and commands, and a large rack of switches to connect the wires. A “Quality of Service” modem can be added to set up priority rules so that the system and connection will always keep more bandwidth for VoIP calls, instead of prioritising other sources of data transfers within the company network.
The need for all this VoIP equipment is eliminated with hosted IP PBX systems. With these systems, users simply have to connect their phones to the internet, and the service provider will deploy all private telephone network features through the internet and web-based applications and programs allowing users to fully set up their installation.
What all these installations need is a fast and reliable internet connection. Although most users will rely on the public internet to connect their VoIP equipment, some service providers assign privatised channels through their own Sip trunks.