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How to Setup Your VoIP Lines to Survive a Broadband Outage

So you have decided that voice over IP (“VoIP”) is the way to go for your business.  You understand the cost savings and streamlined support that accompany consolidating providers.  However, you may be concerned that this consolidation may result in putting all of your telecom eggs in one basket.  Now that your voice traffic is riding on your broadband connection, what happens if you experience an broadband outage?  You simply cannot afford to miss important calls because you are experiencing internet downtime.  That’s where automatic failover comes into play.

How Does it Work?

With most providers, when utilizing SIP trunking or hosted PBX services, there are methods for forwarding calls should your phone hardware not be reachable.  By not reachable I simply mean that the switch at the service provider can’t “see” the hardware on your premise (a phone, analog terminal adapter, etc.) that makes your voice lines function.  Different providers use different terminology such as “automatic failover,” or “call forward unreachable” to designate this feature.  Essentially you can enter the number that you would like for your calls to ring at should you have a power or internet failure of any kind.  This can be a mobile number, a remote office location or any other number that you choose.

Set It and Forget It

One of the nice things about this feature is that it’s automatic.  The switch pings your customer premise hardware on a regular basis.  During a normal ping, should the switch not get a response, it automatically goes into “unreachable” mode and any settings that you have configured for that state.  Once service is restored and the switch gets a response, your normal settings are restored as well. This way your business communications are not interrupted and there is no manual intervention required on your part.  It just happens.

Automatic failover is like a broadband outage safety net when consolidating your services onto a single pipeline.  With this feature activated, you won’t have to worry about missing important calls during a broadband outage.

Benefit Summary

  • Set it and forget it – input upon setup and change whenever you like
  • Turns on and off automatically – one less thing to worry about
  • Keep calls coming in, should you have a broadband outage