What is the difference between VoIP and IP telephony?

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VoIP and IP telephony

We all know how frustrating it can be when we begin to research new products for our business and are met with so many acronyms and jargon, that it leaves us feeling uninterested and deflated. The terms VoIP and IP Telephony are often used interchangeably. But what is the difference between the two?

Well, although there are some pretty distinct differences, you’ll be glad to know that you only need to know the basics when running a business and anything else you can leave to the tech guys… where it belongs!

VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol )

This is the technology used when making a voice call and routing it over a data network like the public Internet. Since the Internet uses particular protocols (known as Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol or TCP/IP), this development is called Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP). Put simply it refers to any method used to make phone calls over the Internet. With VoIP, a PBX (Private Branch Exchange) which for those of you who don’t know is a private telephone network used within a company or organisation, is still used to distribute calls throughout the company, but the PBX must support the Internet Protocol being used.

VoIP phones can offer businesses many benefits over a regular phone service. Monthly costs can be reduced significantly and they allow calls to be placed from any location with a computer and an Internet connection. The latest phones also offer many sophisticated features at no extra charge and is why VoIP is fast becoming the chosen technology for communication for business owners.

So that’s VoIP sorted but what about IP Telephony?

IP telephony builds on the VoIP capability and includes a host of additional software-based features running on computers to replace the infrastructure of the PSTN (Public Switched Telephone Network) which is the old analogue landline telephone system.

IP phones which are sometimes called VoIP telephones, SIP phones or softphones are designed for VoIP, and are connected to the data network (or broadband router in small businesses) rather than the phone network.

IP telephony is really just the business term for VoIP. When sellers talk about IP telephony they are really just referring to the phones used to make a VoIP call other than the VoIP call itself.

We hope you’ve found the above information useful, to find out more about VoIP business telephone systems and IP telephony and how it could improve communication in your business, contact Tech IP today on 0800 50 533 50.

Alternatively you can click on the links below to browse the different types of IP telephone systems that are available through Tech IP or visit our Hosted VoIP & Tech Horizon products pages to learn more.

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