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Ooma Office Gives Small Businesses Turnkey VoIP Phone System

June 03, 2016
By Michael Guta - Contributing Writer

A VoIP phone system has many features that are vital for the way organizations communicate in a digital environment. But for small businesses that can't afford expensive communications solutions, the technology is even more important. The Ooma Office delivers many of these features with a pricing structure virtually every small business can afford.

The Ooma Office starts with a base station hardware that combines on premises and cloud architecture. You have to buy the base station, and any additional Linx extension adapters depending on how many lines you want for your business. Each base can support up to five lines, and you can add as many as four base stations, bringing the total number of lines you can have to 20.

Once you have the base in your possession, you can configure it with the Quick Start Guide to have your business phone up and running. You have to get at least one phone number and one user, which comes to less than $20 per month for a single account. Options such as fax support and conference bridges are available for an additional monthly fee.

The way Ooma is structured allows users to choose the options they need without having to get bundled services they hardly or ever use. This is a great selling point for small businesses that don't need every calling option. And once customers use the service for a year, the price is lowered by a third thereafter.

The Ooma uses broadband speed with an Ethernet connection, but if you run into any problems, it provides another connectivity option. Using the company's USB Wi-Fi adapter, which is extra, you can plug in your router to the base station, and connect a regular or analog telephone to make calls.

"We’re excited to expand our offering to include IP phones so our small business customers have the flexibility to choose the phone technology and features that are right for their business, without incurring a big monthly bill," said Eric Stang, CEO of Ooma.

You can make unlimited calls in the U.S. and Canada, along with low international rates. And when it comes to the features for office communications tools, the Ooma Office includes some of the most popular options in VoIP. They include, virtual receptionist, extension dialing, voicemail, call transfer and call log.

With collaboration now part of the workforce, Ooma also has mobility and three way conferencing features with virtual extensions, multi-ring, do not disturb, transfer calls and more.

As a small business, having a professional answering service improves the image of the company, which eventually drives more business. A good example of this is the virtual receptionist feature of the Oooma Office.

This service can be customized for business hours, after hours and holidays. When there is an incoming call, it can play an announcement, transfer to an extension or a voicemail system. You can program Ooma using the company's text to speech technology to create the different prompts your business needs. All you have to do is type what you want the message to say, and the virtual receptionist will say it.

Ooma also has an app for iOS and Android (News - Alert) so you can make and receive calls, and manage your voicemail using the service over Wi-Fi or a mobile connection.

The Ooma Office platform doesn't have all the options of the more expensive enterprise solutions, but what it provides is an easy to deploy system with most of the communications tools any company will need, large or small. 

Edited by Maurice Nagle

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