Feature Story

The humble desktop phone keeps on keepin’ on

by Stephanie Chan

The humble desktop phone keeps on keepin’ on

Why VoIP phones are as important as ever.

With the advent of the Blackberry in the early 2000’s and Steve Job’s introduction of the iPhone in 2007, the world believed we were headed somewhere small. The tinier the phone, the better. And with that, there were whispers that the desktop phone was going the way of the fax machine in an increasingly smart world.

Looking at the present and ahead to the next decade, we can see that desktop phones are still here and kicking. They now include more features like collaboration, security, and accessibility for diverse work spaces. The humble office phone has once again become indispensable, performing extra duties and even helping employees find available desks in open offices.

The Voice Over Internet Protocol (VoIP) phone is a telephone that uses the Internet, rather than a phone company, to get service. Calls can be made anywhere with a broadband connection, and employees can utilize the same phone number wherever they are. While the first VoIP transmission began in 1973 and gained popularity in the 1990’s, there is still an unexpected growth in VoIP across the world today. And Nemertes Research has found in a 2018 unified communications and collaboration study that 27 percent of organizations plan to increase desk phone deployments by the end of 2019. Reasons for the consistency of deployment in VoIP phones are abundant, here are some key benefits of the technology:

  • Mobility: The ability to keep the same phone number allows employees to work remotely, and guests can also use VoIP in open-area offices.
  • Reduced cost: The simplicity of VoIP installation and maintenance means reduced cost for businesses.
  • Scalable: Because of that simplicity, VoIP is also easy to scale. Moving or adding phone lines is a simple task for growing organizations.
  • Features and applications: Areas like healthcare and hospitality need various applications with their VoIP phones, like notifications, room service, reservations, and more. Other things like video conferencing, messaging, and online meetings are also standard.

At Cisco’s recent Partner Summit conference, the company announced a whole host of new features and devices to their collaboration suite. Alongside enhanced features for cloud calling in Webex, Cisco unveiled the Desk Pro—an “instant office” complete with 27-inch 4K touch display, a personal video system, camera, speakers, and a phone to use Webex Calling. Users can also deploy the new Cisco Headset 700 for phone calls as well. The headset is integrated with Cisco’s collaboration app and devices.

Cisco is expanding its collaboration suite to include phones, video, the cloud, and beyond. VoIP ensures security, cloud readiness, and the ability for mobility and new applications. Read more about why the IP phone is still a superstar here.

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