When searching for a telecommunications solution, it can get confusing once acronyms such as SIP and VoIP are involved – especially for non techie managers. Understanding what each acronym stands for and how they are used as part of telecommunications solutions can be complicated for those without prior knowledge of how IP services work. They each play their own different part in telecommunications and in this article, we will look at the parts they play.

Firstly, let’s look at what makes them the same. Both VoIP and SIP allow users to make and receive calls across the internet, transmitting the voice waves as data packages. The P in both acronyms stands for Protocols, these are the digital rules in which messages are transmitted between computers, or other digital devices. Effective protocols are agreed upon syntax, semantics, and synchronisation of communication used between developers of connected devices, or end points. These protocols tend to become industry standards, making it easier for multiple vendors to communicate between themselves.

Understanding VoIP: Voice Over Internet Protocol

VoIP is an acronym for Voice over Internet Protocol, also known as IP telephony, internet telephony services, voice over broadband or broadband phone service. It is the broadest term used for any phone calls made over internet services, rather than traditional PTSN telephone lines.

VoIP is issued as a subscription service, like services such as Skype or Google Voice, and creates a circuit switch network with IP enabled PBX hardware or a hosted VoIP service. VoIP services can be used where ever you can connect to an internet connection.

Generally speaking when the industry talks about VoIP to end users its talking about Hosted Phone systems which have a monthly cost per user.

Understanding SIP: Session Initiation Protocol

SIP is a communication protocol for transmitting multimedia communications, including video calls, instant messaging, and media distribution. As suggested in the name, SIP trunks initiate the transmissions of the packets of data involved in VoIP, they are the actual physical connections. The protocol defines the messages sent between endpoints, the establishment and termination of the phone call as well as other vital elements of the call.

SIP Trunks create the connection between the PBX and the telephone network, replacing the need for ISDN or Analogue telephone lines. It allows businesses to choose the best software and IP-PBX hardware for their needs without being tied down to a traditional phone line and carrier relationship.

With the announcement by BT Openreach that it intends to stop suppling ISDN by 2025 SIP has become the standard industry replacement for business who want to keep a PBX in their office and has many advantages over ISDN as long as the internet connection is good enough.

Here at LTS we can help walk you through the different telecommunication services available, including VoIP and SIP trunking, to better understand the most suitable solutions for your business. Give us a call or email today and we will evaluate your current and future needs, then discuss the best IP solution for your business.