What are managed SIP trunks and how will they save me money?
Before we get into that, we need to quickly touch on the different ways data is exchanged once it leaves your business:
PSTN – Public Switched Telephone Network
This is the world’s circuit-switched, analog network – telephone lines, fiber optic cables, microwave transmission, cellular networks, communications satellites, undersea telephone carriers – are all interconnected through circuit-switching centers. When you make a phone call using a traditional carrier or use dial-up to connect to the Internet – you are using PSTN.
ISDN – Integrated Service Digital Network
The start of the digital age of communications. With ISDN, you have a digital transmission of voice, video and data over the traditional PSTN.
There are 2 basic types:
- Basic Rate Interface (BRI) – low bandwidth – 2 B-channels that can be used for voice, data and other services and 1 D-channel is used for control and signaling. BRI is for home and small business use.
- Primary Rate Interface (PRI) – higher bandwidth – 23 B-channels and 1 D-channel. PRI is used for larger enterprises.
Now to get back to SIP trunks
SIP stands for session initiation protocol. Protocol is the set of rules that govern the format of messages that are exchanged between servers. Session initiation protocol simply means that you are initiating a session to exchange messaging over the Internet. A managed SIP trunk is a direct connection between your business and your IP (Internet Protocol) telephony service provider. It allows you the ability to make VoIP calls over the PSTN without the need to purchase an IP-PBX gateway. An SIP trunk is a single line that can be used to transfer all multimedia: voice, video and data all at the same time.
Here’s the good part. Saving money:
- Hardware and Service Costs – A managed SIP trunk eliminates the costs associated with the purchase, support and maintenance of hardware gateways. Also, SIP trunks are less expensive than analog circuits, and SIP’s long distance charges are cheaper than traditional rates.
- Scalability – PRI is sold in increments of 23. If your organization has 24 employees, you will need to pay for 46 channels. Managed SIP trunks, on the other hand, are sold in increments of 1. You only pay for the lines you need and you can add additional channels at any time.
- Management – Your SIP trunk provider handles the management of, any updates to, and support of your trunks. Instead of being bogged down managing your communications system, your IT department can focus on initiatives that will grow your business.
- Disaster Recovery – If the lines of communication are down to your business, your business loses its ability to make money. An Internet-based phone system has a higher likelihood of maintaining functionality during a disaster, than a fixed-line, circuit-switched system. Click here to learn more about the importance of having a disaster recovery plan in place for your business.