Softphone vs. VoIP phone: what’s better for your VoIP communications?

When you base your office telephony on standard PBX, you can make calls from a stationary phone or a cordless phone. The main downside of that system is that neither of those options let you leave the office. Switching to VoIP communications changes everything: you can even travel to different countries and call at the same rates while you’re there. You just need a special VoIP phone, which looks just like the one you’re used to, or a softphone — an app on your smartphone, computer, or tablet. Which option is better? Let’s see if we can figure that out.

What’s the difference between VoIP and regular communications?

First, VoIP communications run through the internet rather than a phone cable.


Second, if you have HPBX, which works using VoIP technology, you can manage and configure it from your personal account wherever you find internet.


Third, you don’t have to use physical hardware — an SIP phone — for VoIP communications. Instead, and here’s where things get interesting, you can gain complete independence from your office with a softphone. You can move offices, departments, and entire offices around no matter where they’re located, all while keeping the same number and rates.


Now let’s compare the two types of VoIP phones.

Softphone

Advantages

  • You don’t have to buy anything, as most VoIP apps are free (take Dzinga App, for example, which is the one we recommend to our customers)
  • You can install them on any device, including your computer, tablet, and smartphone
  • There are versions available for all the most popular operating systems and mobile platforms
  • You can work outside the office — at home, on trips, at meetings, or while at one of your offices in a different city

Disadvantages

  • You have to install the app and make sure you have enough bandwidth for a strong connection. Mobile internet, for example, isn’t enough

Physical VoIP phones

Advantages

  • For people used to regular phones, they’re easier to use
  • You don’t have to launch or install anything — you just pick up the handset and go

Disadvantages

  • You have to spend more since you need to buy the phone itself
  • You can’t take the phone with you on trips
  • The phone takes up space on your desk

So which is it, a softphone or a VoIP phone?

Both options have their advantages and disadvantages, which is why most companies end up using both. Put it this way: call centers and employees who only talk with customers from the office use special VoIP phones, while people who need more flexibility and time out of the office go with softphones. Still, the percentage of people ending up with the latter is growing as companies focus on mobility and cutting costs.

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