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VoIP Call Features
Overview of VoIP Features
Converting to VoIP service from the traditional phone network service has many benefits. VoIP service provides low monthly rates, increased portability, and a wealth of VoIP features.
Basic call features are the same with VoIP and traditional phone service: call forwarding, call hold, call waiting, and the like. VoIP service providers will set you up with a web portal to manage these various features as well, such as configuring VoIP call forwarding rules or a call block list. You can't do that on your own with the traditional phone company.
Standard VoIP Call Features and Functions
The following features are the basic VoIP call features. Most VoIP service providers include these VoIP features with monthly service at no extra cost:
- 411 directory assistance
- 3-way calling
- Address book
- Auto forwarding
- BYOD (Bring Your Own Device)
- Call block
- Call forward
- Call hold
- Caller ID
- Caller ID block
- Call return
- Call waiting (w/caller ID)
- Number portability
- Speed dialing
Advanced features like faxing, voicemail-to-email, and Outlook integration are available for residential plans at an additional cost. The basic and advanced VoIP feature sets will vary by service provider, however. Review the VoIP features offered by the service provider before signing up so you know what is included and what is not.
411 Directory Assistance
Dial 411 for information just as you would on a traditional handset.
Call another person while already on the phone and patch them over for a group conversation.
Store your contacts in a directory in the web portal. Use the address book to manage contacts, assign speed dial codes, create groups, and update caller ID displays.
Program calls to automatically forward to your cell or any other number.
BYOD (Bring Your Own Device)
This feature lets you use your current hardware with a new service if you already have VoIP and are transferring to a new provider.
Block numbers individually or create a list of callers that you want automatically blocked.
Manually set calls to be forwarded to another number.
Place a caller on hold so you can put down the phone and pick it back up again without losing the call.
The name and number of incoming callers will be displayed. Your information will also be displayed for outbound calls.
Caller ID Block (*67)
Prevent your caller ID information from being displayed when you make outgoing calls.
Call Return (*69)
Automatically dials the number of the last incoming call.
Call Waiting (w/Caller ID)
You will be alerted if you are on the phone and there is an inbound call. Caller ID will display the information of the incoming call when enabled.
Update your address and phone number in the control panel so emergency services can be directed to your location in the event a 911 call is placed.
Local Number Portability (Keep Your Number)
You can easily take your number with you wherever you move.
Program speed dial so you can call numbers with a 2-digit code.
VoIP service numbers come with a free voicemail for messages.
Advanced and Business VoIP Call Features
Using VoIP service in the workplace has the same cost-saving, feature-rich benefits. Pairing business VoIP service with a hosted IP PBX provides even more VoIP features like VoIP call transfer, faxing capabilities, and auto attendants.
Business VoIP service providers offer varied feature sets as well. Some features will definitely be included with business VoIP: call transfer, call queues, and extensions. But, some providers may charge for access to advanced VoIP features like call recording and toll-free numbers.
- Auto attendant
- Call logs
- Call recording
- Call queues
- Do not disturb
- Enhanced voicemail
- Faxing capabilities
- Find me/Follow me
- Music on hold
- Remote office
- Toll-free numbers
- Unlimited local calling
- Virtual numbers
Also called a virtual receptionist, the auto attendant feature will:
- Greet callers
- Route calls
- Give prerecorded messages for day, night, or holiday hours
- Provide a searchable directory
Logs of all inbound and outbound calls will be created. The web portal will allow you to review and access these.
Record calls by extension, department, or even all calls for quality assurance.
Place calls in a queue to be answered by the next available employee.
Click-to-call functionality works with the address book to let you make calls faster. Clicking on a contact will call them without you needing to dial the number.
Do Not Disturb
Set the phone to go straight to voicemail to avoid being disturbed during meetings or periods of heavy work.
Enhanced voicemail enables you to check and manage your voicemails from a web portal. You can access your voicemail anywhere you can sign online. Enhanced voicemail usually entails voicemail-to-email functionality as well.
Split incoming and outgoing lines into extensions to provide each employee with a phone. Each extension has access to all the VoIP call features of the entire system.
Use an IP fax or an adapter on your current fax machine to send and receive faxes through VoIP. Faxes are received and stored in the web portal. The files can be viewed, printed, and sent as attachments.
Find Me/Follow Me
Program incoming calls to ring your office, home, and/or cell at once or in succession to ensure you don’t miss a call.
Music on Hold
Play music or pre-recorded messages to callers on hold.
Access your voicemail and the call features of the PBX while out of the office.
Business VoIP service is more flexible than a traditional system and new extensions can be easily added as your business grows.
Businesses can use toll-free numbers for the convenience of long distance callers.
Unlimited Local Calling
Most business VoIP service plans come with unlimited calling in the contiguous 48 and Canada.
Virtual numbers are individual numbers that will ring to your main line. They can be in any area code to create a virtual local presence.