iPhones are generally used for personal calls, while the Bria is used not just for business calls but as an extension of your business phone. The call-handling mechanisms, such as presence, transfer, and HD voice, surpass the basic functions of the iPhone. The cost incurred by calls made to and from Bria are associated with your business phone system, so you can avoid racking up your own personal phone bill when you're away from the office.
We'll conduct this review assuming that you have an interest in working remotely, since this is presumably Bria's primary audience. That said, you don't have to work away from the office to use Bria. Some people simply prefer softphones to deskphones.
The Bria iPhone Edition interface is immediately familiar to anyone who's seen Bria before. Its design has become, in many respects, iconic in the softphone space. The signature sleek black and yellow coloring is consistent with its PC apps and its other mobile platform apps. The controls and navigation fit the iOS design scheme nicely. If you know how to use an iPhone, you can use Bria's intuitive controls with ease.
From the main menu, you can browse through your phone’s existing contacts. You can also use a shared external account, such as your Google account, to place a VoIP call. If you purchase the presence and messaging features, you can monitor the status of contacts and message them directly. These features require an XMPP domain to work.
There was never any lagging when we selected various keys in the app. The various account options and preferences allow for a fairly granular level of customization in an effort to operate seamlessly with your provider. Overall, we didn't find much added to the outward design features. However, considering that Bria already has an excellent presentation, this was not an issue.
Bria iPhone Edition Features
Bria iPhone Edition comes with one of the most powerful feature sets of any softphone on the market. Most importantly, the features are well implemented and actually work when you attempt to use them. This isn't always a given with some of the softphones we've reviewed in the past. Features that come with the Bria iPhone Edition include:
- Multiple account support for up to 25 accounts on any SIP-compliant server
- Contact list and contact favorites, leveraging the device’s native contact directory
- Call display and voicemail indicator
- Speakerphone, mute, and hold functions
- Call history with a list of received, missed, and dialed calls
- Call recording
- Multiple call support: swap between two active calls, merge and split calls, transfer calls (attended and unattended)
- VPN support
- Security and encryption via TLS and SRTP
- Audio codecs include G.711a/u, G.722(HD), GSM, OPUS and SILK