On-Premise VoIP Industry Trends

By Ryan Ayers
Updated: February 21, 2011

Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) telephone systems are commonplace in business today. Giving businesses more flexibility and enhanced features for their telephone systems while managing to be much more cost effective than traditional business telephone systems has made this technology the clear choice for business communications.

Many businesses opt to move toward an on-premise VoIP system, favoring the initial investment necessary in order to avoid steep monthly service charges and retain more control and flexibility with their systems. There are certain aspects of an on-premise VoIP system that are important to note before making the commitment to switch over.

The State of On-Premise VoIP

On-premise VoIP systems currently give their owners a much greater flexibility over their telephone systems. These systems were designed as an evolutionary step above a traditional PBX system. This means that unlike a hosted VoIP service, an on-premise system allows a business to add/remove lines, change features, move extensions, and make changes to the network without having to go through a service provider.

This flexibility can make an on-premise VoIP system much more cost effective than its hosted counterparts by eliminating the service and maintenance charges that go along with all modifications/changes. Businesses that have an on-premise telephone solution are able to rapidly adapt and change.

VoIP equipment in general is getting smaller, faster, better, and cheaper as time goes by. This means that in place of the huge telephone closets that were so common with business telephone systems of the past, companies have a much more reasonably sized computer-based piece of equipment from which they can control all of their communications.

On-Premise System Providers

There are many providers of VoIP services and equipment, both hosted and on-premise. The major providers when it comes to an on-premise VoIP system are:

  • NEC
  • Cisco Systems
  • Avaya

These companies specialize in creating and packaging systems that will allow a business to customize its VoIP network to best suit its needs. Their systems and service options tend to be a steady benchmark in researching the best tools for your business.

The Future of On-Premise VoIP

On-Premise VoIP technology is fast becoming a favorite for businesses, and service/equipment providers are rapidly adapting to meet the needs of their customers. This means that there are constantly evolutions in the ideas around how on-premise systems are provided.

Many providers have begun supplying on-premise VoIP systems in what is known as a “managed service” package. These packages allow for a provider-owned VoIP system to be deployed on site at a customer’s location with an arrangement that requires the provider to maintain and service the equipment. This arrangement can allow the business to lease or rent an on-premise system, affording some degree of control over the system without the expense of the hardware itself.

There is also a focus on the idea of “convergence”, which blends PSTN (traditional telephone) systems with VoIP technology. This would eliminate the need for an entirely new infrastructure for a business telephone network and allow for compatible systems and parts to be used in conjunction with one another. This may become another option in a business’ communication structure at some point.

On-premise VoIP can be the most cost effective solution to a business’ telephone needs in many cases. After the initial investment in hardware, the control provided for network changes and updates can be a critical factor in daily operations. As this technology has already become widely used and adopted, new pricing and deployment options are becoming available constantly. Finding an on-premise solution that fits your business’ needs has become a much easier proposition.

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