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Analog vs. Digital Phone Systems

Are you considering a new phone system for 2017? This is a big decision for a business and there are many options available. Most likely you will find yourself choosing between the two major options of using an analog system or trying a digital system. Before you dig into the pros and cons of each system, it is important to consider what your company needs. How does your company operate and grow. Are you a fast moving, transaction based company or does your company rely on building strong relationships with your clients? How important is voice quality and reliability in your company? How important is flexibility and having a feature rich system? Does your company staff numbers fluctuate frequently? How many employees do you have and where are they located?

ton can phone showing business communication concept

Once you have a good idea of what your company needs, it is time to start sorting through the features. It helps to understand the difference between analog and digital phone systems. Analog phones systems have been the standard until more recently. They rely on the copper phone line and simple POT phones. Perhaps the best feature that an analog phone system can boast is the voice quality and reliability of the system. They are also inexpensive up front but you have to consider the cost of maintenance since they are complex and you will need a professional every time you want to make a change.

Digital phones system are feature rich, easy to install and maintain and they are flexible. It is important to understand that your digital phone system relies on your internet connection in two ways. First and foremost, if your internet goes down, so do your phones making it important to consider a fail over internet circuit. Secondly, the amount of bandwidth you have will effect your voice quality. If you are connected to fiber internet and you have appropriately provisioned bandwidth, your voice quality will be as good as any analog system. Not understanding this is where a lot of people start to think that digital phone systems can’t offer the same voice quality as analog systems. You may be looking to move away from a digital system or know someone who has had a bad experience. This is most likely due to having purchased a digital system without having properly provisioned internet bandwidth to match.

With an analog phone system you will need a professional to make changes to a punchboard for simple things like changing extensions. Most of the features that we enjoy today such as voice to text, auto attendant and click to dial are only possible with a digital system. It is better to think of digital phones as software defined telecommunication which is what allows for more features and ease of use. This is the biggest difference between an analog and digital based phone system. Rather then paying to have someone change your extensions on a punchboard you will be changing them on a dashboard.

There are legitimate reasons to move in either directions and once you choose the options that is best for your company you will still need to maneuver through all of the carriers for either analog or digital phone systems. Before you make a decision, be sure and research the differences between the options that are available. For an in depth assessment of your company needs and the options available to you, please contact eTop Technology for help.