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Hosted PBX Trends

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Over the past few years there have been numerous online discussions and articles on the subject of “cost” and “price/performance” of the Hosted PBX. Today these discussions are sounding more and more like outdated statements of the obvious. Yes, it is obvious that Hosted PBX is far more feature rich and cost effective than traditional PBX or outdated Centrex services, but that isn’t the point. Appropriately chosen communication technology very directly impact ways and speed with which business is being conducted, more important than ever in the current economic climate.

For most businesses, however, communications does not fall into realm of their core competencies. Conventional school of thought preaches that you are not going to be a better law firm, architecture firm, pizza shop, etc by running a better phone system than the competition. But that simply isn’t true any longer. With Hosted PBX services reaching beyond simple voice or SIP trunking and becoming full Unified Communications solution, we see promotion of Hosted PBX as a smarter strategic play for SMBs. The value of converging — or integrating — data, voice and video communications over a single IP network comes in the improved ability of people to share, discuss and develop ideas with colleagues anywhere in the world. Voice itself can become a “killer app.” The new standard environment integrates voice mail, global telephone network, directory, presence, unified messaging capability, text-to-speech, conferencing, online phone, address book and more. Enterprises adding voice to other IP-compliant applications really begin to see what the technology can do for them.

Since Hosted VoIP technology requires a tandem of customer premise and service provider networks to communicate well with each other, we should expect a rise in the SMB network improvement projects and stronger drive for network maintenance and support outsourcing. Most SMBs for which I.T. networking is not one of its core competences are incapable of independently verifying whether their network meets service provider’s SLA requirements. The growing popularity of cloud-based services in 2012 will provide new opportunities for service providers to help fiscally cautious businesses extend their post-recession budgets and do more with less.
The face of business communication has transformed greatly with the introduction of VoIP and Hosted PBX services. There is sudden spurt in the demand of Hosted PBX systems due to its benefit realization by large and small enterprises. As more and more businesses warmly embrace the IP telephony, the Hosted PBX systems will replace the traditional premise based telecommunication systems in a few years.

The value of converging — or integrating — data, voice and video communications over a single IP network comes in the improved ability of people to share, discuss and develop ideas with colleagues anywhere in the world. Voice itself can become a “killer app.” The new standard environment integrates voice mail, global telephone network, directory, presence, unified messaging capability, text-to-speech, conferencing, online phone, address book and more. Enterprises adding voice to other IP-compliant applications really begin to see what the technology can do for them.

Telecommunications is going the way of the Internet. Voice, video and data will all be handled by packet switching rather than the more cumbersome circuit switching of the past. These solutions will continue to enhance the way SMBs do business and cost less. However, aligning the capabilities of the Hosted PBX technology with business objectives requires some degree of understanding said technology and having a vision for its role in their enterprise.

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