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3 Alternatives to a Traditional Business Telephone System
April 16, 2019

Here is a list of our top three alternatives to a traditional business telephone system, or 'PBX'.

Back in 1984, the UK telecommunications industry was first opened up to the public market, with the privatisation of British Telecom (BT).

Since then, the market has skyrocketed, with the traditional Private Branch Exchange (PBX) at the heart of UK telecoms. However, as technology advances, the PBX does too.

Business telephone systems are an integral part of UK businesses. However, they may not be suitable for some businesses - so here is our top three alternatives to the traditional business telephone system or PBX.

1. Hosted Telephone System

Hosted telephone systems or 'cloud telephony' is the new boy on the block.

Hosted telephone systems use cloud technology and VoIP to create a unified communications environment in any business.

They are the number one alternative to a traditional business telephone system, helping our clients reduce their running costs.

Hosted telephone system diagram
A diagram showing how Hosted works

As you can see from the diagram above, hosted telephone systems do not require a 'box on the wall'; unlike traditional business telephone systems or 'PBXs'.

Removing the requirement for an on-the-wall telephone system can significantly reduce your businesses running costs, as well as cutting down on maintenance charges.

Hosted telephone systems also offer a typically higher call quality when compared to traditional telephone systems. This is because they use VoIP, which transfers voice calls using your broadband connection.

Is a Hosted Telephone System Right for my Business?

Despite this, a hosted telephone system may not suit your businesses requirements. This is because it relies on a stable internet connection to provide high quality voice calls.

Businesses that rely heavily on their telephone system, such as doctors and GP surgeries, may find that hosted is not as sufficient as a traditional PBX.

2. Business Mobiles

Business telephone systems have been around for a long time. However, it is becoming more and more common for businesses, particularly those with fewer than 10 employees; or those who work 'out on the road', to invest in business mobiles.

Business mobiles are exactly what they say on the tin - smartphones and mobile phones for businesses.

By investing in business mobiles, you can get connected while on the move, or in the office.

Business mobile solutions
Business Mobile Solutions from Commsplus

By upgrading to business mobiles, you can unlock a whole host of benefits, from increased mobility to reduced costs.

Because you don't require on desk handsets, or a box on the wall, your telephony costs can be dramatically reduced when you chose to go mobile.

Another great benefit of business mobiles is integration. With Commsplus, you can integrate your mobiles and your telephone system (even if it's a hosted system) to bring a unified communications envinrment to your business.

Should I chose business mobiles for my business?

Well, although there is a myriad of benefits for choosing to go with a mobiles solution, it may not fit with your businesses requirements.

All businesses are different. Those who are out on the road, travelling and visiting clients in-situ, may prefer business mobiles; whereas an office based business may find that a hosted voice solution offers a more permanent, and reliable office-based telephony solution.

3. VoIP & IP PBX

IP telephony is a common phrase in the telecoms market. IP PBX and 'VoIP', brings together the immediate benefits of a hosted telephone system and the reliability and 'robust-ness' of a traditional telephone system/PBX.

A VoIP telephone system, or IP PBX is the best of both worlds. It brings high-quality VoIP calls to your business whilst retaining the feature-rich benefits of a telephone system.

IP telephone systems are the next big thing in the world of telephony, using IP handsets like the Mitel 6940 below.

Mitel VoIP telephone system
Mitel IP Telephone System from Commsplus

Using Voice over IP for your telephone system helps you future-proof your telephony for the 2025 ISDN switch off.

Businesses using traditional telephone systems may suffer when the time comes for the UK to switch off it's ISDN - and our IP telephone systems can help ensure your communications are always connected.

Is an IP Telephone System the Right Choice for my Business?

It's a very good question. IP telephone systems are very feature-rich. They combine that feature set from a traditional PBX with the modernisation and technology of VoIP.

If your business relies heavily on your telephone system, then an IP PBX or VoIP system is most likely the best option for you. They're more reliable than hosted telephone systems as they have on-site hardware and a robust backbone for your communications.

However, this hardware can mean that they cost more than a hosted voice system, so businesses who have less than 10 users may find it more cost effective to chose a hosted telephone system.

Then again, an IP telephone system will typically come with more features 'out of the box' - making it more cost effective for businesses who require a feature rich telephone system.

So, although initially more costly, an IP phone system can quickly become a more cost effective option for businesses.

What should I do about my telecoms?

Talk to us. That's the simple answer. We know that every business is unique, including yours. So your telecoms solution should also be unique.

There are so many different options in the market today that choosing can feel like a minefield.

Give us a call today for a free no obligations chat about your requirements. Our team are always happy to give advice and help you get the best solution for your business - no obligation, no fee.

Call us on 01934 882200 or send us an email at

Get your free online quote

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