Moving your business phone system to the cloud is simple and straightforward. Setup is fast, and a RingCentral implementation specialist will facilitate a smooth transition for all of your office locations and remote workers.
Your account representative helps you determine how many users and how many IP phones your business will need. Use your existing IP phones, or rent them from RingCentral at affordable prices. You also can connect your desktops and smartphones to the service with free RingCentral applications.
02. Vonage Business:
Most people are familiar with the Vonage name as an early player in the Voice-over-IP (VoIP) services game. Although it started with a consumer-oriented version, still known as Vonage, the small to midsize business (SMB)-oriented Vonage Business service includes Session Initiation Protocol (SIP) and well-established cloud private branch exchange (PBX) functionality. Vonage Business (which, as tested, begins at $81.92 per month for one user and $29.98 per month for each additional user) also offers unified communications (UC), collaboration, and web and video conferencing through Amazon Chime. Still, Vonage Business is not quite as feature-rich as our Editors’ Choice winner RingCentral Office, and its price tag can change significantly depending on which features you enable. So, carefully go over your options with your Vonage sales rep if you opt for this solution.
Potential price issues aside, Vonage Business is a solid package that can give an SMB an up-to-date VoIP-based communications capability, without requiring an on-site telecom manager or expensive PBX hardware. Physical desk phones can be purchased separately or through Vonage and, as mentioned, some features cost extra, such as voicemail transcription and 800 numbers. Initial setup support with a live person is included, too, as is the ability to port numbers from existing lines to the new system. The administrator and user portals offer excellent control over the phone system as well as features for individual users.
03. 8×8 Virtual Office Pro:
Small to midsize businesses (SMBs) looking for a soup-to-nuts Voice over IP (VoIP) telephony system will do very well with 8×8 Virtual Office Pro. The service offers both basic and a good selection of advanced features as part of its base pricing bundle, which starts at $24.99 per user per month. There’s a good selection of calling plans and, perhaps most important, a good number of integrations available with popular third-party software such as Salesforce and Sugar CRM. For this reason, 8×8 Virtual Office Pro wins our Editors’ Choice award for SMB-oriented VoIP providers along with Fonality Hosted PBX.
Setup and Configuration
Configuring Virtual Office Pro was very simple. Upon signing up with the service, 8×8 shipped us two Polycom WX 600 VoIP handsets (meaning, standard desk phones). These aren’t required to use the service; you can simply use Virtual Office’s software-only phone through your PC or mobile device (more on that later), but SMBs typically want a handset on each employee’s desk so we decided to test this capability.
Upon receiving the handsets, 8×8 also sent us an introduction email, which it sends to all new customers, that provided us with login information and basic setup documentation for the service and our handsets. The email also asked us to schedule a 30-minute to 1-hour introductory phone call with a technical service rep to walk us through the system and to answer any initial questions.
It’s important to note, however, that this call isn’t meant to help you set up the service and the phones; it’s just an introduction to what all the capabilities and features are, how to use and configure them, and to answer questions on how to use them. If you run into any issues when initially setting up your service, then 8×8 has separate technical staffers to help with that as well as a well-stocked customer support knowledgebase.
In testing, setup was quick and relatively painless. The phones came preconfigured to connect to the service as soon as they had an available internet connection, though you’ll need to be logged into your Account Manager portal to get them fully working. The portal will provide you with an activation code you’ll need to enter on the handset to get the phone functioning and fully hooked into your account.
04. Intermedia Cloud PBX:
05. Mitel MiCloud Office:
06. Fonality Hosted PBX:
07. Citrix Grasshopper:
09. ShoreTel Connect Cloud:
10. Microsoft Skype for Business Online: