Technically Speaking: How VoLTE Improves Sound Quality Over VoIP Services

Voice over IP (VoIP) was a good start. It took the groundbreaking idea of treating sound like data and made it work. That was 20 years ago, and though VoIP providers continue to work on stabilizing VoIP,  problems still exist in terms of echoes, jitters and latency. In particular, small...

October 16, 2017

What’s the Point of a Business Phone Line in an Ecommerce World?

Have you ever tried to call Amazon or Uber? These ecommerce giants and many like them could certainly afford a contact center, but they have made the conscious choice to discourage customers from contacting them over the phone.

Is that a good idea? Here are three ways ecommerce and SaaS...

October 12, 2017

The Realities of Relying on a PBX System

When it comes to communications technology, business owners often adopt the attitude “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” They have a working office telephone system, so why upgrade? As with any technology, the reason to upgrade is to take advantage of new features and functions, but has the...

October 12, 2017

Is Google Voice a Complete Telephony Solution?

In the wake of the internet revolution, many businesses were able to start up and even run without an actual business phone system. Smartphones and apps changed everything and allowed people to truly go cordless.

People ditched their landlines, using their smartphones and tablets instead, and...

October 10, 2017

How To Cut the Cord and Go Completely Mobile in 2018

Are you wondering if a business phone system is still a worthwhile investment? With a mobile phone (or two or three) in every pocket, is there really any need for a fixed line phone? 

Can you cut the cord and go completely mobile while still running a professional business?

The answer is an...

October 6, 2017

The Importance of Getting Your VOIP Phone Service Mobile

Voice over IP (VoIP) phone service has become the common communications platform for business. VoIP offers business users a number of advantages: superior audio quality, scalability, integration with other technologies, and most important of all, low cost. If you have an enterprise network, then...

October 5, 2017

Getting Millennial Employees to Make and Answer More Calls

Do millennials love their phones?

October 5, 2017

The Value of Voice in an Age of Visual Communication

Chatbots are hot. Video is hot. Emoticons are hot.

If you only read the headlines, you might conclude that business communication has gone 100% visual in 2017. What is the true value of voice now? Does voice still have a role to play in the future of work?

All the evidence says, “Yes.” Voice is...

October 4, 2017

How Successful Leaders Use Their Voice to Inspire and Persuade

Everyone is on the hunt for the next great tool or perfect solution that will help them take their company to the next level. In our digital age, it’s easy to be so focused on social media and digital channels that you overlook a one powerful tool that is free, always available, and incredibly...

October 3, 2017

7 Tips for Making the Right VoIP Provider Choice

As technology advances, systems come together, and the price of technology drops. This is certainly true in telephony. Whereas businesses once had to allocate a substantial part of their operating budget for telephone services, today they can include telephony as part of their IT infrastructure...

October 3, 2017

What Is the Best Mobile Phone for Business?

Better business tools promote better business efficiency, so it’s important to choose the right tools, especially the right mobile business phone. Productivity relies on access to people and information when and where you need it, and your mobile phone is the lifeline that keeps you connected...

September 28, 2017

How to Prioritize Business Phone Features

Even in the age of email and the web, a lot of business is still conducted by telephone. Granted, more people are using email, instant messaging, social media, and other communications channels, but when a transaction is important or you want immediate service, the first thing you do is pick up...

September 26, 2017

The Future of Work Is 100% Mobile

Some changes come very easily.

September 22, 2017

How to Keep Your Employees Safe And Happy While Using BYOD

The world is now mobile-first.

September 19, 2017

Budgeting for 2018: Office vs. Coworking Expenses

While some small business owners worry about improving their profitability in 2018, others are struggling with basic survival issues.

In both cases, “reducing expenses” sits at the top of the priority list. 

Location matters for all businesses, not just for those in retail and restaurants. As...

September 15, 2017

Should Your Small Business Cut the Cord and Go Completely Mobile?

Phone systems have been a necessary but painful component of any viable business for over century now. At the heart of communication, customer service and sales, the business phone was crucial to getting deals done, providing service to customers, and communicating internally. For the most part,...

September 12, 2017

How Much Money Can a Virtual Phone System Save Your Business?

The short answer to the question in the title is "Up to 88%." For details, read on. 

In the past, two of the biggest expenses for in starting a small business used to be the office lease and the phone system. These were assumed to be the backbone of the business and it was hard to imagine...

September 9, 2017

Business Phone Basics: What Is VoIP?

Office telephone systems are still an essential communications tool. Even with the proliferation of email, chat, and online communications, the phone is still the most efficient tool for information exchange and is the preferred means of contact for many customers. At the same time, the...

September 8, 2017

Which VoIP Telephone Features Do You Really Need?

Way back in the 1990s, small companies were finally able to afford a PBX phone system and there was a burst of entrepreneurship. By 2010, new VoIP providers made enterprise-level phone service even more affordable for those with plenty of bandwidth and a reliable local network.

September 6, 2017

Technology That Can Help Your SMB Look Like A Big Company

You don’t have to have a lot of employees to be a major player in any industry. Tech giants like Wikimedia, Automattic (Wordpress), Tumblr and Craigslist all operate with under 100 employees.

September 6, 2017

Why Are Business Phone Companies Ignoring Small Businesses?

Small businesses are the engines of the US economy. In 2017, there are more than 30 million small businesses (under 500 employees) in the US.  

September 5, 2017

What Are Some Low-cost Alternatives to VoIP?

VoIP was a good start. There's no doubt it can reduce the cost of a small business phone system by 50% or more. There's a new alternative, though, that can drop phone costs by 80% for businesses of 3-30 employees.  

September 4, 2017

7 Times a 2 Minute Phone Call Saved the Day

Think about how many times you’ve been deep in the middle of an email or chat thread and thought, “If you would just pick up the phone, we would solve this in 2 minutes!”  Here are seven times that saved the day.

September 1, 2017

What Does the Best Business Phone of 2018 Look Like?

Technology changes rapidly, including telecommunications, and the best business phone you use today may look very different a year from now. For example, the Apple iPhone just celebrated its 10th anniversary. Consider how much your world has changed over one short decade because of smartphones...

August 30, 2017

Can You Hear Me? SMB Phone Systems That Deliver

As landlines are coming down across the world, IP telephony companies are gaining market share and disrupting traditional business phone service. But what do you do when the disruption is on the line? Jitter, latency and packet loss can add up to poor call quality, dropped calls, and can even...

August 29, 2017

Is There Such a Thing as Free VOIP?

Everyone loves free stuff. Wouldn’t it be great if you could get your business telephone service for free? That’s what a lot of small to medium-sized business (SMB) owners are looking for when they try free voice-over-IP (VoIP) services. There are dozens of free VoIP services available, including

August 25, 2017

Choosing a Phone Service for Business (No IT PhD Required)

Choosing the right telephone system for your company may be the most important decision you have to make about your business infrastructure. Like it or not, the telephone is a necessary evil. The telephone remains an essential link to customers as well as a vital tool for internal collaboration....

August 15, 2017

5 Key Principles in Using Employee Phones as Business Phones

Employees are more productive when using their own phones as business phones.

August 14, 2017

How to Know When PBX vs. VOIP is the Wrong Question

Business communications strategies have changed as email, the web, texting, and social media take an increasingly important role in staff and customer communications. However, the telephone is still an essential business tool.

Nothing is more efficient or more compelling than the one-to-one...

August 11, 2017

What Are Your Options When Business VoIP Doesn’t Deliver?

Many small businesses have switched to VoIP in search of better scalability and better reliability. In a study from 2014, those were the top two features that drove the VoIP purchase decisions and 57% of these were first time VoIP buyers.

August 10, 2017

How to Switch to a Virtual Phone System in One Easy Step

Why would you need a virtual phone system?

That answer is easy. In today’s business world, no one is stationary and as executives and employees telecommute and travel, it becomes more imperative than ever to keep in touch by telephone. Virtual telephone systems offer “find me/follow me”...

July 27, 2017

Using Your Smartphone As the Company Phone?

"The most dangerous place to make a decision is within the office," -- Ulrik Nehammer, Senior VP at Salesforce

His message is clear: Go mobile to collect better intel and then you can make smarter choices about the future of your business. As your business starts to grow, though, it can be...

July 26, 2017

Does the Desk Phone Have a Place in the Future of Work?

It seems like everyone is selling a desk phone system these days, even as they race at the same time towards virtualization of the hardware in the cloud. The cloud is eating the channel. The graveyard of defunct business phone systems is growing. Yet, to be fair, the desk phone is still a...

July 24, 2017

Your Smartphone is Hiding a Commercial Phone Service

Did you know that this year is the 10th anniversary of the introduction of the Apple iPhone? In the last 10 years, the iPhone, along with each of the other iterations of smartphones, has revolutionized wireless communications and changed the way everyone thinks about their phone...

July 13, 2017

How to Pick the Best Virtual Phone System for an International Team

Today’s marketplace is truly global, and small to medium-sized businesses (SMBs) are becoming bigger players in the global economy. Not only are more SMBs sending goods and services abroad, they are working more closely with global teams that provide regional sales and support, as well as...

July 5, 2017

Four Big Innovations in VoIP Technology & Why They Don't Matter

Improvements in the speed and stability of enterprise networks have resulted in an explosion in Voice over IP (VoIP). After all, what business wouldn’t want to save money by using VoIP technology to harness the internet for telecommunications? VoIP makes global calling virtually free with...

June 26, 2017

Is There Such a Thing as Online PBX?

There was a time when choosing a business phone system was easy; you had one choice, your local telephone company. Today businesses have a number of telecommunications options—Voice over IP (VoIP), on-premise PBX, online PBX, mobile phones, hosted services, virtual phone services—and choosing...

June 23, 2017

Phone Systems and the New Habits of How People Communicate

A good friend of mine used to joke around saying, “I LOVE change. You go first!” Humans are creatures of habit. Although many homo sapiens are seen touting about how much they love gadgets and new toys, when it comes to asking them to edit a habit, it’s incredibly difficult to make that happen....

June 22, 2017

9 Steps to VoIP Phone Deployment

Migrating to a state-of-the-art voice-over-IP (VoIP) telephone system offers a number of benefits to any company. VoIP brings features that improve overall communications and productivity, such as integrated fax support, call queuing, call screening, conference calls, call forwarding, call...

June 16, 2017

How to Find the Best Business Telephone Service Providers

When was the last time you upgraded your office telephone system? Communications tools should evolve with the needs of your business, especially as new technologies emerge and services change.

June 15, 2017

New Phone Systems: Questions the IT Director Wish S/He'd Asked

Once upon a time, purchasing a business phone system involved many less decisions. Your choices were pretty much narrowed down, based on your number of required extensions and desired features. That has changed.

As the leader of an IT team, you already know that you’ll need to decide whether...

June 14, 2017

Future-Proof Business Communication Blueprint: 6 Questions to Ask

Business communication used to be pretty simple. There were only a few channels for communication, and they were relatively straightforward. There was little chance of messages getting lost, and miscommunications were less frequent. Businesses understood their customers well. They developed...

June 14, 2017

The Costly Common Misunderstanding About IP Telephony

The telephone remains the critical link to customers, prospects, and suppliers for every business, but how reliable is your telephone system? Most companies have migrated from the old-fashioned Centrex systems to hosted PBX or voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP). VoIP offers digital voice...

June 13, 2017

Skype vs Slack: Are You Asking the Right Question?

No one communications tool can meet every business need. Workers use different types of tools—telephone, email, video conferencing, file sharing, group chat, etc.—for different types of communication and collaboration.

June 12, 2017

Calculating ROI of a New Small Business Phone System

If your small business phone system is more than six years old, you are probably on the market for a new one. And if you’re a small business, under 150 employees, the choices, options, and features are confusing, at best – even determining how many vendors need to be involved to turn on a phone...

June 8, 2017

6 Reasons Nobody Uses Your Business Phone System

Don’t do it. Don’t calculate how much of your IT budget was spent on desk handset devices and the technology to support those. And after you’ve calculated that, do not calculate how often your colleagues elect to use a smart phone over the carefully selected magical desk phones that promised...

June 6, 2017

Businesses Cut the Cord: the Future of Internet Telephony

Shopping for a business phone system? Navigating the wrecked landscape of a telecom industry disrupted can be confusing, to say the least. Everyone is selling a proprietary system (or even two or three), and the transition from legacy PBX to internet telephony seems to have replicated rather...

June 2, 2017

BYOD is Winning for Better Business Communication and Engagement

Is BYOD really a question? If you didn’t bring your own device, whose would you bring?

The smartphone has become a ubiquitous feature of modern life, and integral to better business communication. Something like an external hard drive that we carry everywhere with us, our reliance on search...

May 31, 2017

Will VoIP Technology Kill the IT department?

Will VoIP technology make IT’s role obsolete? It sounds ironic, but the trajectory seems undeniable. First a technology is introduced, then dedicated specialists have to manage it until the technology becomes simple enough for everyone to use. It’s happened over and over with things like...

May 19, 2017

Barriers to Smooth Business Phone System Adoption

When you install any new technology, you are going to encounter roadblocks. There are a number of reasons people resist change, and without the support of senior management and the willingness of the employees to adapt to a new system, you will be fighting an uphill battle. Here are seven basic...

May 18, 2017

Considerations for Choosing a Business Phone System

As an IT manager, your objective is to manage your entire IT budget, including telecommunications, against what’s best for the organization. If you are considering updating the telephone system, you should take into account multiple factors before moving ahead.

May 11, 2017

Is Free VoIP Right for My Company?

“Free” doesn’t have quite the same ring that it used to, pre-internet era. BFB (Before Facebook) it was honestly possible to revel delightedly in the notion of a wonderful free software that would organize your contacts, sort your messages, iron your underwear and keep an eye on the kids while...

May 3, 2017

Business Telecom: What’s the Tipping Point for VoIP?

Software continues to eat the world, including telecom. Telecommunications company Avaya filed for bankruptcy this January, shaking the sector. Though the legacy giant will hopefully emerge stronger, the trouble underscores the difficulty facing companies as they move out of hardware and into...

April 20, 2017

Comparing Business Phone Systems for Startups

Have you ever gotten off the phone with an employee or customer after resolving an ongoing problem, and wondered why it took you so long to pick up the phone?  Voice-to-voice communication is effective and powerful. But if talking on the phone is simple, choosing a business phone system isn’t so...

April 18, 2017

How to Turn Employee Phones Into a Smart Business Phone System

People are turning employee phones into a smart business phone system in 3 minutes or less. 

We’re pretty excited about the next big thing over here at Spoke. Check out this short video and get a glimpse of the shift that’s taking place.  We’re changing how business thinks about phones.

April 11, 2017

The Worst Mistake You Can Make Choosing a Business Office Phone

When you are running a small business, there are so many administrative details that you have to deal with—office space, equipment, payroll, even cleaning services—and the last thing you want to think about is your office telephone system. However, your business phone system is probably one of...

March 30, 2017

How to Optimize Your Company’s Virtual Telephone System

Virtualization is the technology buzzword for the decade. Computer systems are applying virtualization to separate hardware from software, which makes it easier to connect to cloud and remote computing resources. There are a number of advantages to virtualization, but the big one is...

March 23, 2017
March 22, 2017

How to Choose and Deploy a Business Phone System and Ensure Employees Adopt It

What to Look for in Business Telephone Service Providers

Every business needs a telephone service, and thanks to advances in internet and mobile technology, there are more telecommunications options than ever before. Choosing the right telephone service for your business is simply a matter of balancing your business needs against available telephone...

March 21, 2017
March 14, 2017

Spoke's Security White Paper

Smartphones vs. Unified Communications Platforms (UC)

Businesses are always looking for tools for effective business communication. There's nothing more frustrating than missing an important call or not having the information you need when you need it. In today's fast times, if you're not ahead of the game, you're behind. That's why many companies...

March 14, 2017

Five Risks of Relying Solely on an Online PBX

More small businesses are migrating to cloud computing services, including for their telephone services. Hosted PBX and hosted VoIP systems seem attractive, because they are inexpensive to set up, scalable, and inexpensive to operate compared to on-premises PBX (private branch exchange) systems....

March 14, 2017

7 Benefits of Updating Your Business Phone System

How old is your business phone system? You probably don’t have a rotary phone on your desk, but you might have that old push-button phone that hasn’t been upgraded for ages. You figure it still gives you a dial tone, so why upgrade?

March 10, 2017

Things You Need to Know About Setting up a Phone System

There was a time when setting up a phone system was seemingly simple; you would just call the phone company and it would take care of it (for the most part). Those days are long gone. Today businesses have any number of options when it comes to setting up a phone system—they can use PBX, a...

March 3, 2017

How Exactly a New Phone System Improves Customer Relationships

Happy customers require care and support. Once you sell a product or service to a customer, you want to make sure that customer is satisfied and he or she can reach you to resolve any problems. Unfortunately, too many companies are migrating customer relations to spotty VoIP phone systems,...

March 2, 2017

5 Key Factors in Choosing Phone Systems for Businesses

Effective business communication is central to the success of any business. However, office telecommunications devices are not often the first category that comes to mind when one considers the central drivers of product innovation.

February 20, 2017

6 Signs It's Time to Shop for a New Company Phone System

The company phone system is a focal point for business operations. Even with the advent of email and text communication, most real business is still conducted by telephone, and it’s vital that you keep your telephone system up to date to stay competitive.

February 15, 2017

Are Cloud Based Phone Systems Still Relevant?

Cloud computing is a well-established concept for business. Rather than building your own IT infrastructure, you rent computing power and applications hosted by a service provider on the Internet. For business, this is a great concept because it minimizes the need for investment in additional...

February 3, 2017

Stop Wasting Time on Telephone System Maintenance

When calculating office operating costs, the office phone system has to be part of the equation, but how much do you need to allocate for telephone system maintenance? Even if you have a small office, you will need to be prepared to replace faulty handsets, repair broken wiring, rewire systems...

February 1, 2017

Why Hosted Business Phone Systems Are Stuck in the Dark Ages

Technology has always been an enabler for small to medium-sized businesses (SMBs). Advances such as the personal computer, mobile card readers, and e-commerce have created new possibilities for business. However, in many ways, the business phone system is still a remnant from the past.

January 30, 2017

Can a Phone System Improve Company Culture?

Whatever happened to the company phone system? There was a time when the telephone was the primary tool for conducting business. You would use the phone on your desk to call customers and suppliers and to confer with colleagues to gather necessary information quickly and efficiently. In the past...

January 24, 2017

PBX vs VoIP vs Telephony: Are We Over-Thinking the Problem?

There was a time when selecting a telephone system for your business was easy. Private branch exchange (PBX) was the common telephone standard for business for years, offering reliable phone service for internal and external calls.

As computer networks became faster, however, 

January 20, 2017

Is Affordability the New White Knight for Telecom Subscriber Growth?

Is "Affordability" is the new White-Knight for Telecom subscriber growth?

November 2, 2016