- PBX has been around in the markets since the mid-1990s but has recently gained popularity.
- Your cloud PBX is responsible for managing and storing all the data you want your cloud to hold.
One might wonder why Cloud PBX (Cloud-based Private Branch Exchange) has been the buzzword today.
In fact, it has become an inevitable trend in the communications industry.
More and more organizations are adopting it because it offers enhanced flexibility and can provide support for the remote workforce.
For example, it allows corporations to respond to customers instantly. This will allow them to better address multiple customers calling in at the same time.
This is just a sneak peek at what PBX does. Further, it helps harness the best technologies to bring quality service to your customers.
This article will give you a brief idea of cloud PBX and its benefits. Let’s start with the history first.
Evolution of the cloud
Cloud technology has had various applications for businesses and consumers and has evolved as well.
Initially, companies used “point-to-point” data circuits to move and store data. And then, they found a cheaper way to do the same tasks: Cloud technology.
A cloud PBX system is premised on cloud computing technology. Here, data is not stored on hardware or computer but is stored and transferred over the Internet.
What is Cloud PBX?
Public branch exchange, also known as PBX, emerged in the mid-20th century and is referred to as the technology that any telephone provider uses to route calls across locations without the need for a phone line to be installed for each employee.
Traditional PBX was a large piece of hardware that needed to be stored and operated manually besides being costly as well.
Eventually, cloud technology advanced and found its way to the business phone industry: The cloud PBX.
Modern PBX Is a boon for business owners for it needed no computer hardware or installation. It’s up to the PBX provider to handle capacity requirements, performance analysis, and system configuration. It helped make automated calls to the correct extension and resemble servers.
A PBX phone system permits every employee in a company to have their desk phones but still share independent physical phone lines.
The latest PBX systems also allow you to manage your voicemail, use IVR menus, transfer calls, and cue callers when phone lines are busy.
Customers just need to purchase/ lease the VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) compatible phones and plug them into your internet service.
The PBX phone system can be managed easily, upgraded as the business grows and is free from hardware headaches that plague non-cloud, traditional businesses.
Three types of PBX phone systems
With traditional PBX, all phone calls go through the phone company’s analog network. On the other hand, modern PBX phone service uses cloud computing and internet calling.
Broadly speaking, the three main types of PBX systems:
- Traditional PBX: Here, the phone service comes from the telephone company, but your PBX hardware manages all the phone lines. It accepts all incoming calls, routes them to the concerned departments, assigns lines to employees making outgoing calls, and supports internal calls between desk phones. Traditionally, PBX requires physical office space and enormous IT resources to maintain and manage. This is why it’s not a viable option for small businesses, but large businesses that invested in it still rely on this legacy technology.
- IP PBX: Internet protocol private branch exchange (IP PBX) enables you to use the internet and make and receive phone calls. You still possess the PBX hardware, but have the VoIP (Voice Internet Protocol) service instead of telephone service. VoIP has become a substitute for PBX as it’s cost-efficient compared to large bundles of telephone lines and frees users from their desk phones. VoIP works from any internet-linked device and enables you to add other mediums of communication channels. This includes SMS, video conferencing, and instant messaging. It also comes with advanced features such as call recording, call center analytics, and CRM integrations. If you already have access to a PBX system but also want the benefits of VoIP, IP PBX allows you to combine the two using a process called SIP (session initiation protocol trunking. SIP trunks are a good substitute for traditional phone lines and allow you to connect your business phone system to the Internet.
- Hosted PBX: Hosted PBX (also known as cloud PBX) is the latest iteration of PBX phone systems. Like the traditional PBX systems, hosted PBX requires hardware, but that isn’t your problem. Your provider is responsible for building and maintaining the hardware. This helps you save space and IT resources. Your private cloud-based phone network are managed from a web portal. Like with other cloud services, hosted PBX can be accesses by team members from any location using any internet-connected device, including an internet browser or a mobile app.
How does it work?
All cloud technologies rely on the Internet. Cloud PBX works by connecting on your Internet Protocol (IP) or Internet Phone for an internet connection. Having a VoIP or some other IP system in your office is mandatory to access a cloud PBX.
Most VoIP service providers include PBX options at a minimal or no charge.
You can access your cloud PBX with a customized account from any device that can operate Cloud PBX’s interface software. This means you can access your cloud PBX from any internet-abled location or device you have certified for use with your system.
All you’d require is a password or answer a security question to log in from that device.
All the devices communicate through middleware, a software that enables your cloud to have multiple means to access.
This facilitates greater mobility and freedom when using office phones and PBX. So, in times when you travel frequently and yet do not want to miss your calls, stay connected through your cloud PBX.
Your cloud PBX service provider is responsible for managing and storing all the data you want your cloud PBX to hold. Apart from collecting and storing your data, your service provider backs up all relevant information you require in case of data loss if a system crashes.
The controversy surrounding cloud technology
Privacy and security concerns over the prevalence of cloud-based technologies have been ripe.
Many customers remain wary of all the information on the cloud entrusted to the service provider. Regarding cloud PBX, this implies that the service provider has access to crucial details of contact details of your customers. Usually, service providers set out specific privacy policies to govern their contact with and use of your information.
It is up to a cloud service provider to offer end-to-end security. In case of any breach in security, it will dent their reputation and could harm their business prospects. This is why every service provider’s primary concern is to ensure that they offer their customers the best security apparatus.
But even as security measures are in place, the chances of your account being hacked and your information being stolen remains.
Nevertheless, using a cloud PBX in the form of hosted VoIP can eliminate many problems faced in traditional PBX services.