What’s the Difference Between Landlines, VoIP, and Number Hosting Services Anyway?

Telephones galore!
Photo by prayitno

Our virtual receptionist crew knows that whether you’re just starting out or are thinking of switching to a new phone system, the wide world of telephony can be a confusing place. The folks in the Ruby® Sales and Client Services departments are always happy to help clients with their phone services (and even hop on conference calls from time to time, just to make sure things are hunky-dory). With today’s technology, there’s a veritable crush of phone services available, so we thought we’d start you off with a little info on a few of the options out there (all of which work with our professional virtual receptionist service):

  • Landlines. This is usually what people think of first; examples include AT&T, Verizon, and your local telephone company. Landlines are generally great in terms of sound quality and reliability; however, they may not be as feature rich as alternatives.
  • Voice over Internet Protocol (aka VoIP). Skype, Vonage, and other VoIP systems are often very flexible and are usually much less expensive than traditional landlines. Unlike most landlines, though, service quality varies by location, so you may want to ask around for the best service in your area.
  • Number hosting services. These services will host your phone number for a small monthly or annual fee. Providers like Grasshopper will either give you a new phone number or you can port your existing number to them; your calls will then forward to wherever you like.
  • And then there’s always mobile phones. Although we recommend not publishing your cell as your business number, a business cell phone can certainly be an asset. If you’d rather skip getting any of the above options, and you use our virtual receptionist service, you are welcome to give out your Ruby toll-free number and we would be happy to seamlessly transfer calls to your cell phone live if you’re available. This could come in especially handy for those in the tech field or service industry and are frequently out of the office.

Have additional questions? Post a comment or give us a call at 866-611-7829! We’d be delighted to help!

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