What are SIP trunks? A simple explanation for businesses
Posted by Caroline Moore on 15/05 at 08:08 AM Large enterprises, SMEs, Landlines and calls, SIP,
SWComms SIP trunking blog post image

What are SIP trunks or what is SIP trunking are questions often asked by customers and prospects alike.

It is a shame that a SIP trunk is not a tangible thing that you can just pick up and have a good look at, but the reality is that it is a language or protocol.

Still confused? Don’t blame you.

SIP (or session initiation protocol), trunks have actually been around for a while and represent the future of telecommunications with video calling leading the way. However, while the move towards IP telephony or VoIP seems to be manageable for some people, SIP is still causing issues.

We will try to explain what it is and what it does without getting too wrapped up in technical jargon or acronyms.

In simple terms, SIP trunking is a cost-effective, reliable and resilient way for businesses to make their calls. SIP uses a data connection to link to the public service telephone network, or PSTN, rather than over traditional ISDN lines.

However, the quality of the data network connection is crucial and SWComms always advises its business customers to use leased lines for SIP services so they can enjoy business class voice traffic.

Leased lines do cost more than traditional broadband but with more and more businesses already investing in leased lines for data sharing purposes and access to the Internet, it means there is no need to have both leased lines and ISDN lines; they can simply increase their bandwidth to accommodate voice traffic.

If you still need a visual tool, it is often easier to refer to the residential end of the market, where families often use Skype but run it along with their TV, Internet and gaming access on the same link over the public Internet.

This means all of these services are competing for bandwidth leading to inevitable detrimental effects on service. SIP is a business quality version delivering quality of voice on a line, which is also being used for web browsing and file transfer.

The other main difference is that whereas Skype users make calls using a headset or webcam through their computers, SIP users can retain the use of traditional handsets and there is no outward change of service to users or clients.

SWComms provides a choice of services to suit business requirements and these can be either linked directly to a SIP compatible telephone system or an existing system by using a gateway product, which means equipment does not have to be replaced.

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Caroline Moore's avatar
Caroline Moore on 15/05/2013

Former newspaper journalist, Caroline joined the company in 2008 with no previous knowledge of the industry.

She set about stripping back all the jargon to produce plain English marketing collateral to support the sales teams. Now slightly more well-versed in the dark arts of voice, connectivity and data services, Caroline writes blogs, case studies, data sheets and social media updates to engage with potential and existing customers.

This industry is far cry from her previous working life when she worked as communications manager for Exeter Chiefs and Northampton Saints.

Contact: caroline.moore@swcomms.co.uk

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