PBX (Private Branch Exchange) is a phone system used within an organisation to communicate in various ways. Users of PBX can communicate internally (within an organisation) and externally (outside an organisation) using communication channels like Voice over IP, ISDN or analog. Advantages of PBX include free calls between users, voicemail, call recording, call queues and interactive voice menus (IVRs). A PBX can be either installed on-site, or hosted at a service provider.
What is a PBX Phone System?
PBX stands for Private Branch Exchange, which is a private telephone network used within a company or organization. The users of the PBX can communicate internally (within their company) and externally (with the outside world), using different communication channels like Voice over IP, ISDN or analog. A PBX also allows you to have more phones than physical phone lines (PTSN) and allows free calls between users. Additionally, it provides features like transfers, voicemail, call recording, interactive voice menus (IVRs) and call queues.
Traditional PBXs would have their own proprietary phones, such that there would be a way to re-use these phones with a different system. This means that we either have system-lock-in (we are bound to the same system because changing system means also changing phones, which makes it prohibitively expensive to break away) or vendor-lock-in (we are bound to the same vendor because the phones are only usable with systems from the same vendor, sometimes only within a particular range of systems).
Time and Technology however have changed the consumer telephony landscape, with the flag-bearer being the Open-Standards-based IP PBX. The point of the “IP” in this new era is that the phone calls are delivered using the Internet Protocol as the underlying transport technology.
PBX phone systems are available as Hosted or Virtual solutions and as on-premise solutions to be run on your own hardware.
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A Hosted PBX (Private Branch Exchange) delivers all features as a hosted service. The advantages of a Hosted PBX include no installation of hardware on-site and no hardware maintenance costs.
Dedicated fibre link to national VoIP network, software based telephony network, extensions possible on PCs, iPhone and Android devices, free call to all users, no more telephone lines or hardware.
A Hosted PBX is a private branch exchange (PBX) delivered as a hosted service. It’s also known as a Virtual PBX and the advantages companies that use it experience are the elimination of installation, operation and maintenance costs of their VoIP PBX as their VoIP service provider hosts their PBX for them.
A Hosted PBX still allows companies to utilise and take complete advantage of their phone system’s feature set such as voicemail, faxing, automated greetings, conferences and so on.
Companies that offer Hosted PBX’s as a service to their customers handle the call routing or switching as well as all maintenance involved in the hosted PBX service.
There are three ways that a hosted PBX works; either over the Public Switched Telephone Network (PSTN) over the Internet (hosted IP PBX via Internet Telephony or Voice Over IP, VoIP) or with a combination of the two.
Initial and Ongoing cost savings – there’s no need for a large investment before installing your phone system and also the maintenance cost of your phone system is much lower as you don’t need to hire someone inhouse to operate and maintain your PBX.
Eliminate office boundaries – employees can work from anywhere with a virtual office phone system. Ideal for home-workers and salespeople who are constantly on the move.
Boost of corporate image – by using a hosted phone system small businesses can still give the impression of being a large organization with a professional phone system.
Scalability – with a virtual phone system businesses can add or remove lines and extensions as they grow
Easy to use – since there’s no end-user management involved with a virtual PBX, it’s easier to use than a traditional phone system.