Many of the existing digital phone sets connected to PBX's, Key Systems or Centrex will also work with VOIP. How?
The analog signal carried up to the handset/headset can be re-directed to a VOIP service that uses the soundcard of a PC (known as a VOIP 'softphone'). An audio path adapter directs the audio to and from a handset/headset to either the digital set or to the soundcard handling the VOIP softphone.
This means that the common audio device on the desk can service the two audio paths - the original PSTN network and now the VOIP network. The key thing is that the user can control through his digital set, calls coming from both networks and can move between 2 types of calls. And it is possible to direct both VOIP and PSTN calls to a common voicemail box, especially when busy on one call on one network and a call comes in on the other network. The power of VOIP can be incorporated without displacing the original investment in a digital system. Business can take immediate advantage of the benefits of VOIP without a major retro-fit and re-training exercise!
This tip was submitted by SearchEnterpriseVoice.com member Dave Minns of Tellall Communications.
This was first published in July 2005