The growth of Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) in recent years has been spurred on by several critical points. Perhaps the most important—for both business and residential VoIP users—is the sheer amount of cost savings that can be realized. But there's more than just cost savings afoot, as improvements in technology have contributed to add even more to a concept that was already doing well as a cost savings tool.
Current reports from Seattle Phone (News - Alert) Systems suggests that fully 30 percent of businesses use VoIP in some fashion as part of day to day operations. That's a pretty good number by itself, but when it's considered over time, it only gets more pronounced. Just 121,000 people were using VoIP at the end of 2002, but by the end of 2012, just 10 years later, that number had soared to reach in excess of 30 million total users. That's making a case for much improved technology in the field.
The improved technology has also brought with it one of the great tenets of customer service: a good reputation. Where early VoIP service wasn't exactly the greatest—some early users still remember how calls would stutter and lag—improvements in overall technology have shored up the performance to where VoIP performance is, in many cases, indistinguishable from a dedicated landline's performance. In many cases, VoIP is outperforming landline to the point that more than a few have considered throwing over the landline completely in favor of VoIP, and in some cases, have even gone so far as to actually do so.
VoIP even brings advantages in terms of service interruption; when a landline service is interrupted, business can slow down or even stop outright. But should a VoIP system—particularly a cloud-based service—be involved, the users can work remotely, allowing business to continue and taking a bite out of downtime, a process that can cost businesses as much as $26 billion annually.
The hardware associated with VoIP is likewise improving. Phones meant specifically for VoIP can be had from a wide variety of vendors, and can include a likewise wide variety of different features. Some VoIP phones can be had with included cameras and video screens for videoconferencing, such as the VP530 from Yealink. Others, like those offered from snom technology, can provide interoperability with an array of different tools that aren't even offered by the company, like snom's 7xx and 8xx series that can work with Clarity (News - Alert) Telemanagement's hosted VoIP service.
While the idea of better technology providing better service shouldn't come as much of a surprise, the sheer scale of the improvements taking place in the VoIP sector are enough to catch most anyone at least a little off guard. That improvement is waiting to be taken advantage of, and put to work in businesses—and even residences—the world over. What's more, the technology isn't showing any signs of slowing down any time soon, so putting that technology to work is likely to continue to prove advantageous not only today, but in the future as well.