Cloud communications systems are the future. BT have stated that both ISDN and PSTN (traditional telephone lines) will be phased out by 2025 and, with new reports stating that they will be stopping sales of the same this year, there soon will be no other option. With better quality audio at a lower cost than traditional telephone lines, making the switch to a reputable VoIP phone system would be an easy decision even if traditional methods were not being phased out.
With a VoIP provider with whom you can get started using the Internet to make calls without any new hardware. Just download our VoIP apps and sign up for a free VoIP trial account to get started right away.
However, if you’d like to use a dedicated device for making calls over the Internet, you’ll need to configure a VoIP desk phone.
The process is the same regardless of whether you’re setting up your VoIP phone at home or in the office.
VoIP Phone Setup Guide
- One: Unbox the unit, and connect the handset to the handset port on the reverse of the control unit with the coiled cable.
- Two: Using the ethernet cable, connect the IP phone to an ethernet port. Ensure to connect the cable to the LAN port on the reverse of the device and not the PC port.
- Three: If your unit supports PoE, you will not need the power cable.
- Four: Once the unit is powered on and connected to your network, locate its IP address using the interface.
- Five: Enter the IP address in the search bar of any browser and log in. Usually, the credentials are something simple like ‘User: admin, password: admin’, but check the documents provided or the brand website. Our FAQs may help.
- Six: Head to your VoIP Provider to acquire your SIP Username and SIP password details.
- Seven: Input these in the appropriate fields (see our FAQ here for specifics, sorted by brand).
- Eight: If not already in place, ensure that your new VoIP device can receive calls via your VoIP Provider’s call routing function.
Optimising your setup – Things to consider
Most modern VoIP phones are PoE, meaning they can be powered via their ethernet cable. Depending on the device or outlet you plug your ethernet cable into at the other end, however, the phone may not actually receive power. This comes down to whether or not the device you’re plugging into offers PoE itself.
Home users, in particular, will want to be aware of this and, if unsure, should use the power adaptor supplied with their VoIP phone.
Many cheaper routers, especially those intended for home users, do not handle VoIP traffic very well. That doesn’t mean they can’t, but various default settings in the router can cause more problems than they solve. One such setting is called SIP ALG. In almost all cases, SIP ALG will cause issues with your VoIP calls. If your VoIP phone is on and functioning, but you’re having issues with your calls, log into your router and look for the SIP ALG setting.
VoIP Phone Setup Requirements
There are a number of prerequisites for getting your VoIP Phone set up. Firstly, you’ll need the phone itself, which hopefully is a given. Second, you’ll need a wired ethernet connection. For home users, this will usually mean plugging straight into your router, or into an ethernet outlet in the wall. Business users are more likely to want to use a PoE switch.
Somewhat confusing to some users is that you’ll also need an active subscription to, or contract with, a VoIP service provider in order to use your VoIP phone. An IP phone won’t just work out of the box by plugging it into an ethernet outlet. Just like you need a phone service provider to use an analogue phone, you’ll need a VoIP service provider to use a VoIP phone.
The confusion typically stems from the fact that to use an analogue phone, you would historically have an engineer from the phone company come and install a line. You might think that, since you already have internet access, your VoIP ‘lines’ are already installed. This is not the case, though, as VoIP lines are virtual and come at extra cost.
Whilst you can contact your existing telecoms provider to enquire into their VoIP offerings, you’ll save yourself money and receive better service when you use a provider who specialises in VoIP phone systems.
Buy VoIP Phones Today
That’s it and, if it sounds simple, it’s because it is! With a VoIP phone system, working from anywhere should be a breeze. Just remember that, since you’re making and taking calls over the internet, any issues are likely with your internet connection (once it’s confirmed that your devices have been set up correctly, of course).
If you’re finding that, unhappily, your network’s hardware isn’t up to the task of supporting a full-time business user, you’ll want to get hardware that is. We sell everything from VoIP phones to network switches and WiFi access points, so have everything you need to effectively upgrade your home or office network to be business ready.