During these challenging times, we send you and your families our best wishes.

Having supported Macs for over 30 years it has taught us that Mac issues do not respect lockdowns or global pandemics, they just happen regardless.

At Dejac we are determined to maintain our high standards of support to the Mac business community whilst abiding by the UK government’s social distancing guidelines. This can be achieved in several ways including helpdesk Mac support, remote consultancy and doorstep collections for repairs.

Please get in touch if there is any Mac issue you would like us to address on 01494 809551 or [email protected]

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VoIP 2015 - Tidbits, practical VoIP scenarios and recommended suppliers (3 of 3)

The final article on VoIP contains a few tidbits that you may find useful and three practical overviews of how VoIP can be used to your advantage when used in particular scenarios.

Skype - In many way the pioneer in VoIP and the original soft phone concept. Since its recent take over by Microsoft it has had a bit of make-over. In my opinion it is still very much for the single user, it is easy to setup and basic to use. You can purchase various monthly subscriptions eg 400 mins to UK landlines for £3.59 a month. I have found it best used in conjunction with a Skype certified headset (from around £40). Their call rates are a little dearer than you will find from a more dedicated VoIP supplier but you do get 60 minutes free Skype calls to landlines as part of your Microsoft 365 subscription.

Porting Geographic Landline Numbers - BT and other telephone companies will have you believe that you can’t take your landline number with you when you change supplier or move to different exchange area. This isn’t strictly true. Most BT and Virgin Media (ex NTL & Telewest) number (01, 02, 0800, 0845, 0870, 0871 etc) can be moved to a VoIP supplier. Once with them you can move location and retain the phone number. It needs a bit of planning,forethought and commitment to VoIP but it will mean that you retain your Geographic number regardless of where you are. It also becomes your property as opposed to the property of the incumbent landline supplier. 

VoIP Scenarios.

Poor mobile phone reception at home or work.

You live or work in a location where there is really poor mobile phone coverage and you want to continue to use your iPhone for making outgoing calls.

Solution - Your iPhone can be configured with a soft phone for your VoIP account to make outgoing calls via your WiFi network. Here at Dejac we have a soft phone on our iPhones and so if we find that we don’t get a mobile signal at a clients, so as long as we are connected to our clients wireless network we are able to make outgoing calls.

N.B. Normally most outgoing VoIP calls of this nature will be displayed as “Unknown” or “out of area” which may deter some recipients from picking up. You can ask the VoIP supplier to change the CLI (call line identification) for your account to be the same as your mobile phone or office number so the recipient of the phone can recognise your number on their handset.

You are moving office or home.

You are moving home or office and BT say that you can’t take your number with you. At the outset, having to change your business phone number seems like a disaster but if managed probably you can break your ties with BT’s geographic specific numbers once and for all. The first thing to do is purchase your new virtual number, this could be geographic specific e.g.. 01494 xxx or non-geographical e.g.. 0845 xxx. These can be purchased from your VoIP supplier who in turn can re-route any incoming calls to an existing landline, mobile number or your VoIP service. Ideally this should happen at the earliest opportunity, even before you move office, so that all clients and suppliers can be notified in plenty of time. Once this stage is complete you can arrange for your new phone service to be operational at the new office (see part 2 of this guide) and then get the VoIP supplier to re-route incoming calls to the new phones on the day of the move. Most geographic virtual numbers only cost a couple of £’s each month and have nothing to do with BT so providing you maintain your payment of your virtual number you can move office many times without the hassle of changing your phone number each time.

You are starting a new business.

You are starting a new business from scratch or setting up a new enterprise that is running parallel with you current business. This scenario is a variation of the last one which uses virtual numbers. You can purchase a virtual number for your new business and have incoming calls either routed to a separate phone or to any existing phone. The VoIP supplier at an extra cost can notify you if the incoming call is for the new virtual number prior to you answering it.

Recommended Suppliers

The following are a list of VoIP suppliers that we have found to be reliable and consequently we are happy to endorse.

VoIP Providers : voipfone.co.uk, voip-unlimited.net, gradwell.net

VoIP phone systems : Kerio Operator (http://www.kerio.com/products/kerio-operator)

 SoftPhone - Zoiper

I hope you have found these articles on VoIP enlightening. They have been designed as an overview to the world of VoIP but if you would like to explore any aspect in more detail then please contact us on the telephone number above.

Darrin Charlton