Private branch exchange telephone systems are an integral part of almost every business, particularly for those who engage heavily in customer service. However, all PBX systems are not the same, and, in fact, there are four different types, each with distinct attributes.
What Are The Different Types Of PBX Systems?
Virtual PBX systems are cloud-based. In this type of system, most internal calls are handled through the internet. What this means is that companies making few external calls can benefit from this type of system. In addition, companies that use few essential phone features such as hold music or voicemail can also find value in a virtual PBX system.
A simple monthly subscription fee can provide a company with PBX-hosted systems, including all the benefits without all of the maintenance issues that can come with other types of systems. With this type of system, there is a reliance on voice over internet protocol technology which is operated by a third-party vendor. An additional advantage to hosted PBX is that initial costs can be minimized because some existing VoIP technology can be used. This system is most economical for smaller businesses with under 20 people.
3. Internet Protocol
IP PBX systems also rely on VoIP technology and offer in-house configuration to allow for more control. While maintenance is more manageable with this system than with traditional PBX systems, there are some disadvantages. First, the IP PBX, theoretically, could have unlimited phone lines as long as it has matching bandwidth capabilities. Second, although running costs are lower, the upfront costs are significant. This type of system is most popular among businesses with a small amount of space available on-site because it contains all the call data in data packets which requires less space.
For an extended period of time, some companies that have been in business may still be utilizing traditional PBX systems. Such systems use landlines when originating and collecting phone calls. Referred to as a legacy system, traditional PBX systems cost more to run than those that rely on VoIP technology. These systems specifically benefit those companies already operating with legacy PBX infrastructure because it can cost more to switch to a different type of system than it does to keep the current system running.
There is no one-size-fits-all option with PBX systems. The business as it is currently running, future goals, and existing infrastructure or lack thereof all play significant roles in how each PBX system fits with an individual company.