The Differences Between Hosted Phone & Unified Communications

Cloud technology is fast becoming the framework behind almost any type of service. Communications systems are no exception.

Some service providers offer hosted phone (VoIP or voice over internet protocol). Others offer unified communications as a service (UCaaS). What’s the difference between these two? Which solution makes more sense for your business or organization?

The Key Features of Hosted Phone

Hosted phone solutions are cost-effective and offer flexibility, reliability, and scalability. Simply stated, they enable phone service over the internet instead of through a local phone company.

They provide the ability to move a phone to any location with an internet connection without changing the phone number. Your existing network infrastructure becomes your communications system, as well. No separate lines are needed for multiple phones and extensions.

Other features of a hosted phone system include:

  • Call forwarding
  • Call recording
  • Conference calling
  • Call monitoring
  • Voicemail transcription
  • Call logs
  • Use of softphones installed on a computer or mobile device
  • The ability to make and receive calls over an internet connection
  • Options for mobile phone applications

The Key Features of Unified Communications

Along with all the functionality of a hosted phone solution, unified communications as a service (UCaaS) goes further. It focuses on the communications of your organization as a whole – not just phone.

UCaaS is a system that integrates multiple communication methods into one unified interface and experience. It enables multiple communication devices and media types to work together.

Many UCaaS solutions allow for the following:

  • Video conferencing
  • Internet fax
  • Messaging
  • Shared file storage and collaboration
  • Security systems
  • CRM (Customer Relationship Management) system integration

Advantages of Unified Communications

A unified communications service doesn’t require on-premises infrastructure. Communications can be hosted entirely in the data centers of your service provider.

The subscription model of a UCaaS plan keeps it flexible, ensuring you pay only for what you need. As your business experiences changes, your unified communications plan can change with it.

A hosted phone system provides voice calls over the internet. A unified communications solution combines all of your business communications (video conferencing, faxing, and more), including your voice calls.

Which Solution Is Right For You?

Choosing between a hosted phone or a unified communications solution will depend on the needs of your company. Know what types of communication are required for your business.

If standard phone calls are all that’s necessary for your business, a hosted phone solution might be all you need. But if your organization communicates using various methods, or if yours is a highly collaborative environment, unified communications might be a better choice.

For help in choosing the communications solution that’s best for your business, contact a UnitedCloud specialist today.