‘Phone line’ has been used for so long, it’s simply entered the English language as a popular phrase. But VoIP phone systems don’t use ‘phone lines’ in the traditional sense of the term. A ‘line’ means many different things in the VoIP world so you might be asking how many VoIP lines does my business need?
A ‘phone line’ is an old term that comes from traditional landline phone systems. However, in an era where most businesses have switched to VoIP service, this phrase is now used in many different contexts. ‘Phone line’ and ‘line’ were well-defined terms in the not-so-distant past. In relation to a landline phone service, a line is a physical wire in the wall that allows each phone to receive inbound/outbound calls. With a landline system, each office phone requires one of these physical lines to receive phone service.
VoIP phone systems do not require you to install physical wiring. VoIP desk phones connect to your Internet network via Ethernet cables. Softphones and webphones can connect to your VoIP phone system via wireless Internet. This allows you to access your business phone system from anywhere with an active Internet connection.
How many phone lines your office needs largely depends on how you’re using the word ‘line’. Here V1 VoIP describes several different scenarios will help define what a line means to you.
1. Line = Number of Employees Example: We have 15 employees, therefore we need 15 lines.
Here you are speaking about the number of ‘users’ or ‘seats’. Each user typically has a phone and a unique extension, with the option of additional features like a voicemail box, call forwarding, and music on hold.
2. Line = Number of Phones Example: We have 15 cubicles, so we need 15 lines.
Some refer to ‘lines’ as the number of physical phones they need. This is usually the case for facilities where phones are apportioned per location or room, and not necessarily per person. Employees who frequently travel between offices may also have a desk phone at each location. In this case, the number of devices is greater than the number of users.
3. Line = Number of Simultaneous Inbound/Outbound Calls Example: We need ten lines to be used at one time.
Sometimes people use ‘lines’ to refer to the number of inbound/outbound calls an organization can take at one time. The maximum amount of simultaneous calls matters very much to call centers, support/sales queues, and other high volume call operations, who tend to view ‘lines’ from a simultaneous calls perspective. With a hosted VoIP solution, there are certain services that limit the number of concurrent calls you can make. But there are also services that allow for a high or unlimited number of simultaneous calls.
A ‘phone line’ means many different things depending on the context. In most cases, you’ll be referring to the number of phone numbers your organization needs. The other interpretations refer to details like the number of registrations per user and the number of simultaneous calls per phone number.
V1 VoIP allows for a high or unlimited number of simultaneous calls per phone number and multiple registrations per user which means you’ll be paying for fewer phone numbers and users. Depending on your call traffic, you may only need one phone number. Contact V1 VoIP today so we can get you set up with the amount of phone lines you need.