Microsoft PSTN Calling… Have you waited long enough for it? As the preview of Microsoft PSTN Calling is currently available and its full launch is imminent, today’s blog is all about Microsoft PSTN Calling!

Back in 2015, Microsoft began to offer Cloud PBX services with PSTN Calling, which was, at the time, heralded as an ambitious step by Microsoft. They wanted to provide their users with the traditional phone calling capabilities, but without the need to manage on-premises equipment.

Since this announcement, Microsoft has significantly opened up Cloud PBX with PSTN Calling, expanding this service to over 32 countries, and allowing customers in those countries the ability to take advantage of flat-rate, per-user, per-month pricing. In January of 2018, Microsoft PSTN Calling preview reached Canada, with Microsoft’s intention being to make this generally available in the near future.

From the questions we have received from our customers, we know many organizations in Canada have anxiously waited for Microsoft PSTN Calling service to become available. In this blog, we’ll discuss what you need to know about Microsoft PSTN Calling, including what it is, who needs it, the benefits, and how you can get started.

 

PSTN Calling – A Brief History

The traditional Public Switched Telephone Network (PSTN) system is circuit-switched telephony – a dedicated channel (circuit) between the person making and the person receiving the call – that uses copper lines that Bell (or whatever telephone company owned the infrastructure) runs from their central hub into your home or office. Then, your Private Branch Exchange (PBX) logs the call and route it to the appropriate receiver.

Before the digitization of these calls, these PSTN systems manually connected those pieces of copper wire through a switchboard. The longer distance the call, the more copper wire was needed, and the more expensive the service was.

Microsoft PSTN Calling

Source

Over the years, technology advanced and phone calls became more digitized, allowing for the introduction of fibre optic cables, cellular networks, communications satellites, microwave transmission links, and undersea telephone cables.

This traditional way of PSTN calling was set on edge after the emergence of Voice over Internet Protocols (VoIP) around 1995, which allowed people to use the Internet to make and receive phone calls at a significantly reduced cost (in some cases, completely free). When VoIP originally emerged, it was plagued with poor sound quality and connectivity issues, but with the introduction of broadband Ethernet internet, that improved, and by the early 2000’s, companies were starting to realize how this technology could benefit them.

Traditional #PSTNCalling was set on edge after the emergence of #VoIP, which allowed people to use the Internet to make & receive phone calls at a significantly reduced cost (or, in some cases, completely free). Click To Tweet

 

What is Microsoft PSTN Calling?

Microsoft PSTN Calling is now in preview in Canada, and marries the traditional PSTN Calling with VoIP technology to provide those organizations that have a traditional on-premises “landline” with a completely Cloud-hosted PSTN solution. Available through the Skype for Business Cloud PBX, Microsoft PSTN Calling can give people in your business their own, primary phone number, which they can use to make and receive calls – all through the Internet.

Simply put, with Microsoft PSTN Calling, you can ditch the cumbersome on-premise structure and move to a Cloud solution that lets you make and receive calls from your PC, handset, or mobile device – often at a significant cost reduction.

With Microsoft #PSTNCalling, you’ll be able to ditch the cumbersome on-premises structure & move to a #Cloud solution that lets you make & receive calls from your PC, handset, or mobile device. Click To Tweet

 

Who Should Be Interested in Microsoft PSTN Calling?

Do you feel that your organization is paying high monthly or yearly support contracts to maintain your on-premises phone system?  Do you want to move from a CapEx to a monthly/annual OpEx billing or invoicing model? Are you a start-up or SMB with budgetary constraints who are looking for a reliable solution? If you answered yes to any of these questions, Microsoft PSTN Calling might be right for you.

Aside from the scenarios above, Microsoft PSTN Calling is also a great opportunity for organizations with remote workers, frontline workers, or other non-traditional “9 to 5” employee structures. Because your phone number travels with you wherever you go (all you need is an Internet connection), PSTN Calling is ideal for people on the go, or people who work from home.

 

The Benefits of Microsoft PSTN Calling

Below, we’ve outlined a few of the benefits you’ll see from switching to Microsoft PSTN Calling in your organization:

A Significant Cost-Savings

  • With Microsoft PSTN Calling, you’ll have no need to purchase on-premises equipment anymore, leading to a significant cost-savings for your organization. This greatly reduces the up-front costs of a traditional on-premises phone system.

Lower Maintenance Requirements

  • Microsoft PSTN Calling removes the need for yearly support contracts with organizations like Bell, Rogers, or TELUS to maintain your phone system.
  • With Microsoft PSTN Calling, you no longer need to maintain your own phone system. Because it’s Cloud-based, it’s backed by Microsoft’s 99.9% Service Level Agreement, which guarantees 99.9% uptime.

Take Your Number With You

  • With Microsoft PSTN Calling, your number travels with you wherever you go – whether you’re on your computer, handset, or mobile phone.
  • You’ll have a single number for users to get a hold of you, whether it rings to PC, handset or mobile device.

No Need for a Traditional Handset

  • Microsoft PSTN Calling eliminates the need to purchase traditional handsets, however, if you prefer the feel of a traditional handset, you can still use one.
Some of the benefits of #Microsoft #PSTNCalling include a significant cost-savings, lower maintenance requirements, and no need for a traditional handset. Click To Tweet

 

Get Started with Microsoft PSTN Calling

If your organization has a legacy PBX contract with a major telco (like Bell or Rogers) that’s about to expire or is coming up for renewal, now’s the perfect time for you to consider whether or not Microsoft PSTN Calling is right for you. The first step in this journey is to do an assessment of your IT network and telephony infrastructure, to determine how your organization can benefit from implementing a Microsoft PSTN Calling solution.

During this assessment, ProServeIT will look at important factors within your IT network, such as: your requirements for incoming calls, what your voice traffic looks like today, how many Primary Rate Interfaces (or phone lines) you have, what your long-distance consumption looks like, and whether your current Internet bandwidth can support VoIP.

Get started today? Contact ProServeIT to begin your Microsoft VoIP journey.

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