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Converting an analogue phone line to VoIP

If you’re planning to streamline and future proof your business, you may be considering switching from standard phone equipment to a VoIP telephone system. But want does this mean for your existing system? Can you use your old phones over your network, rather than invest in new handsets?

Why switch to VoIP?

Internet-based telephony provides businesses with several benefits:

  • It’s cheaper to run than traditional phone services,
  • It offers enterprise-level call features as standard, such as:
    • call forwarding
    • call queues
    • voicemail to email
    • music on hold
    • call recording
    • conference calling
  • UK-based geographic prefixes can still be used, wherever you are in the world
  • Staff can continue to make and receive calls on the same number, even when they are working remotely. For customers and clients, there is a perceived continuity of service.

Analogue phone adapters

It is possible to convert an existing phone system, using either an analogue-to-VoIP adapter or a router that has VoIP capabilities incorporated within it.

An analogue telephone adapter, or analogue terminal adapter (ATA), makes it easy for homes and businesses to take advantage of IP voice calling. As a plug in-and-go solution, it means old phones and faxes can communicate with digital VoIP servers.

Service engineer monitoring voice phone lines

Why adapt your existing phones rather than opt for new ones?

Opting for an ATA is typically cheaper than investing in a fully specialised VoIP phone system.

If you’re concerned about the reliability of your internet connection, an ATA can provide you with an effective failover option. Should your connection drop, you will be able to switch back to your analogue connection.

What considerations need to be given to putting off a full VoIP system upgrade?

Be aware: the cheapest option may not necessarily be the best for your business. It is important to weigh up the short-term savings against the long-term benefits.

Take, for example, a small home business. Using an adapter could save the business owner money on voice calls in the short term. But what if they know they want to scale up the business? An ATA may not provide the flexibility and full VoIP functionality required for a rapidly expanding operation.

Adapters are better suited to small businesses with two or three lines, or residential premises in which the homeowner wants lower local or international calling costs, to keep in touch with family and friends.

Office worker making a voice call with a VoIP handset

Which adapter should I use?

The best option for you will depend on what voice call features you require and how many phone lines you want.

If you’re considering converting to VoIP telephony and can’t decide whether an analogue telephone adapter is right for you, seek advice from a professional before you buy.

If you’d like more information, or help choosing a digital phone system, get in touch with our team today.