We continue our telecom Tuesdays series with an acronym. If you have ever looked over your telecom bill, read up about your services or tried to read up about the industry in general, I am sure you have come across a bunch of acronyms. They loved to be used in this industry.
Session Initiated Protocol
SIP is an acronym for Session Initiated Protocol, which is tech talk for giving your phone system the knowledge to know how to handle incoming traffic, whatever kind of traffic it may be. This advance has made SIP the new standard in telephone service. It uses Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) to connect an IP PBX (your phone system) to the internet, allowing users located anywhere INSIDE the Enterprise to communicate with users worldwide, whether on fixed or mobile devices.
Use of SIP allows for the cancellation of traditional (EXPENSIVE) telephone lines that used the PSTN (Public Switched Telephone Network), the old standard before VoIP technology. SIP is also a conduit for multimedia components including voice, data and video, making it the cornerstone in the foundation for Unified Communications (our next term to be reviewed) which allows for the incorporation of instant messaging, email, web conferencing and shared applications or collaboration.
There are three components needed in order for SIP to work. The first is an IP PBX (if you do not have an IP PBX see earlier posting on Hosted PBX for a solution that does not require the purchase of one). The second is an ITSP or an Internet Telephony Service Provider and finally is a border element such as a SIP-capable firewall, a SIP-enabling edge device connected to the firewall or a switch that can transfer calls into and out of the PSTN.
In addition to increased functionality and the ability to decrease costs by cancelling lines there are many other benefits to SIP. Local and intra-company long distance calls are free, while other long-distance calls are much less expensive since calls traverse the IP network as opposed to the PSTN. Also being able to set up virtual numbers in local markets allows customers there to dial a Local number instead of a toll free number. Since data and voice services are combined, circuit costs are slashed. Finally, as the entire solution can be outsourced, the ongoing maintenance and management of the solution can also bear significant savings.
[author_bio username=”Barry” name=”yes”]