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VOIP Phones: IP PBX versus SIP what is the difference

Posted on 2011-03-14
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Last Modified: 2012-05-11
I am looking to set up voip in our UK home business where one line will be business and the other personal.  I have nearly selected our provider and in picking the handsets I came across the distinction between VOIP phones which support SIP and some which do not.  I understand that a SIP phone does not need to use a hosted PBX service.  Can someone please elaborate on this?
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Question by:canuckconsulting
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nomorefuzzylogic earned 250 total points
ID: 35129070
SIP is a protocol - there are others but SIP is a general purpose standard supported widely.
For you to make or receive calls from an Internet Telephone to the PSTN/Mobile your phone must register with a Gateway. Your phone then "asks" the Gateway to call a number and the Gateway converts between Analogue signals on the PSTN and digital signals embedded in SIP Protocol packets to and from your phone.
An IP-PBX is "simply" a telephone exchange which has Incoming registrations from Internet phones and outgoing registrations with a Gateway and manages links between them.
The Gateway is probably what you are referring to as a provider (eg VOIPCHEAP, DRAYTEL etc etc) - you set up an account, deposit money and use their service to make phone calls.
You only need an IP-PBX if you want to transfer calls, have auto-attendants and voicemail etc. - this sits "in the middle" of your path between your phone and the Gateway.
If you want an incoming number too there are providers that make these available (Draytel is free UK incoming number and v.low cost calls) and will ring your Internet phone allowing 2 way calling.
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by:RouterRat
RouterRat earned 250 total points
ID: 35137386
An IP PBX or VOIP phone system replaces a traditional PBX or phone system and gives employees an extension number, the ability to conference, transfer and dial other colleagues. All calls are sent via data packets over a data network instead of the traditional phone network. With the use of a VOIP gateway, you can connect existing phone lines to the IP PBX and make and receive phone calls via a regular PSTN line.

http://www.3cx.com/PBX/IP-PBX-faq.html

I believe this link will will answer all of your questions.
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