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Clara Wicht, Senior Product and Marketing Manager at Telviva

Guiding your business on the journey from copper to cloud

ADSL/VDSL, the copper-based connectivity options, have recently been declared as unviable to sustain. We have been seeing various reports since mid-2020 especially, some issued to customers directly and to the media, by no less than the incumbent copper network operator itself. Rampant theft of copper, deteriorating infrastructure and the fact that the technology has been surpassed by modern, more stable and infinitely more reliable terrestrial and wireless options for connectivity, are all contributors to the discontinuance of copper-based commodity services.

In addition to the slow but sure disappearance of DSL services, other narrowband copper-based services such as Diginet, Martis and ISDN are sure to be – if not already – retired also. The owners of the copper network can no longer profitably build, maintain or manage it and therefore will no longer replace copper cabling if it is stolen or damaged and have taken a deliberate decision not to further use copper cabling in any new build projects.

For business customers especially, this scenario of uncertainty around connected today and disconnected tomorrow, without a warning presents a risk to business continuity. It is therefore imperative that alternatives to their existing copper services be sought with urgency. There’s opportunity here to shed the bulky, expensive, on-premises, obsolete, legacy telephony hardware too and to swap it out for a solution that’s cheaper, more reliable and has a whole lot more to offer. A cloud-based, hosted voice solution should feature in every business’s communications future.

Some businesses may look to sweat their assets as it were or be bound contractually in terms of existing infrastructure leases and the like. These factors may stand in the way of an immediate system overhaul, but there is enough expertise in the market to comfortably plot a way forward and carefully orchestrate a migration from copper to cloud with minimal disruption – all while paying maximum homage to stable business continuity. Session Initiation Protocol, or SIP trunking can easily create the hybrid harmony required for satisfying an organisation’s voice needs while they undertake the journey from copper to cloud.

SIP is the gateway through which companies can achieve a voice over IP (VoIP). A SIP trunk is the virtual version of an analogue phone line. A provider can connect one or multiple channels to a PBX, allowing local, long distance, and international calls over the Internet. If there is an on-premises PBX at the company, a SIP trunk provider can connect employees allowing them to make outbound calls on the existing system, without restrictions on the number of concurrent calls. This is just the start of an exciting digital transformation, as complete migration to the cloud promises so much more than just plain old telephone services.

Collaborative working allows managers to get the best from their teams by fully exploiting the talents of the entire team and directing them towards achieving common company goals and targets. It is beneficial, especially in this post-pandemic, new normal that embraces hybrid and remote working, for organisations of all sizes to be deliberate in their choice of tools so that collaboration is enhanced, encouraged and seamless no matter where employees work from.

Unified Communication & Collaboration applications have now moved to the cloud, paving the way for Unified Communication as a Service (UCaaS), and is the latest iteration for sound, multi-faceted and modern business communication. Not only does it allow companies to continue using the landline directory numbers that their customers, suppliers and partners have grown accustomed to, but it has the added advantage of bringing together the following productivity enhancing features that cater for as many communications channels as there are preferences of individual employees:

  • Voice and telephony

Including fixed, mobile and softphone enterprise telephony, with PBX functionality.

  • Meeting solutions

Multiple voice-conferencing, video-conferencing and web-conferencing capabilities, including screen sharing.

  • Messaging

Voicemail and unified messaging.

  • Presence and instant messaging (IM)

Enable individuals to send text and other information to others or to groups in real time. It should also be able to notify users when their colleagues are online or when they have read messages.

  • Flexibility

Enable users to access multiple communications functions from a consistent interface using different forms, from desktop and browser clients, clients for mobile devices like smartphones and tablets, to specialised clients embedded within business applications.

Integration

Unified communication platform integrates with other critical work and business applications such as contact centres, workgroup applications, plug-in integrations for common business applications and browsers, communications platform as a service (cPaaS) for digital business application integrations, and linkage with business analytics and artificial intelligence (AI) capabilities.

Businesses that still rely heavily on copper based connectivity should be considering their next move and partner now with an experienced supplier that will walk the transformation journey with them.

By Clara Wicht, Senior Product and Marketing Manager at Telviva

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