SIP phones may seem like an afterthought, especially if you view telephony as a commodity service that “just works.” But choosing the right SIP phones has a direct bearing on VoIP’s value, especially among end-users.
At a minimum, you want comparable features to your legacy phones. But with SIP phones, you should expect more. Core features enable a good everyday end-user VoIP experience. Keep in mind, not all SIP phones are created equal.
Here’s a list of basic features to look for in a SIP phone during the buying process:
- Programmable keys
VoIP is more flexible and feature-rich than legacy systems, providing many options for employees
to customize their phones.
Call management keys
It’s easy to perform routine tasks such as call hold, transfer, conference, redial, change to speaker mode, etc.
Consider the size, backlighting and ease of navigation. VoIP is your entry point into multimedia communication, making this feature a key value driver for moving beyond legacy, especially for managing shared call appearances.
Determine how many lines your phone should support, and the extent to which the status of calls on other lines or extensions will be monitored.
Look for the ease of importing and exporting to and from other devices, as well as managing them in terms of access control, blocking calls, etc.
Support for other audio modes
Look for a speakerphone with volume controls and compatibility with a headset or that enables hands-free options.
Power and connectivity options
Your deskset should have the ability to support Power over Ethernet and Gigabit Ethernet speed.
Your deskset should support G.729 VoIP codec, as well as G.722 for wideband audio and HD voice.