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Small Business PBX: The Basics

Learn how small business PBX systems have evolved and how that benefits your company.

 

Small business PBX phone systems today are increasingly more sophisticated. Here's a quick comparison of a conventional small business PBX system and a Unified Communications system that combines an Internet Protocol (IP) PBX and other features.

A Conventional Small Business PBX

Traditionally, a small business PBX (Private Branch Exchange) is a telephone switching system that manages incoming and outgoing calls for a company's internal users. A PBX is connected to the public phone system and automatically routes incoming calls to specific extensions. It also shares and manages multiple lines. A typical small business PBX system includes external and internal phone lines; a computer server that manages call switching and routing; and a console for administrative control.

IP-Based Small Business PBX

An IP PBX can do everything a traditional small business PBX can do and more. It performs the switching and connecting of Voice over IP as well as landline calls.

A conventional PBX requires two networks, one for data and another for voice. An IP PBX system runs on an IP data network, which saves costs and minimizes network management.

With an IP PBX, you can use IP phones, softphones (which don't require any phone hardware, beyond a computer and a microphone headset), and many offer apps you can use with mobile smart phones.

Unified Communications: IP PBX and More

Small businesses require specialized features to support their particular workflows. Unified Communications Manager Express from Cisco Systems is designed specifically for small businesses. It combines an IP PBX with robust telephony features that traditional phone systems can't deliver.

Unified Communications Manager Express is affordable, reliable, full-featured, and easy to deploy, administer, and maintain. It helps small businesses dramatically reduce communications and network management costs, enhance collaboration, improve productivity, and more.

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