The calendar year turned over and as always, we’re here checking out the latest and upcoming trends in the VoIP world. It shouldn’t come as a surprise that a few of the major ones from last year (and the year before) continue to hold their spots on this list—namely cybersecurity and increased competition in the video conferencing space. What does come as a bit of a surprise is seeing VoIP-specific headlines in our research. In the past, most of our intel stemmed from more general cloud computing round-ups. We kid you not when we say our writer actually got excited to see articles specifically noting VoIP trends. We live a fast and furious life over here at OnSIP! Granted, the global shift to remote work during the Covid pandemic combined with VoIP’s growth history (and continued trajectory) means this focus was only a matter of time. And we love to see it! Read on for some of the key themes shaping VoIP in 2022.
1) It’s Omnichannel Time
Calling has officially moved off center stage. Customers across the board prefer varied communication channels when contacting a business. Meet contact centers, the iPhone to call centers’ flip phone. Bonus points to anyone already switched from landline service to VoIP—with your communications based in the cloud it’s easier than ever to diversify your channels without the hassle of switching providers or investing in hefty, expensive hardware you might not even have room for at the office.
2) AI and IoT Integrating with VoIP
We’ve watched the rise of UCaaS over the years, and now there’s a new -aaS in the mix: Contact Center as a Service. Consider this the modern upgrade to traditional call centers. While calls are of course a major part of contact centers, the shift comes on the heels of increased business focus on customer experience. Part of any retention-worthy business means engaging customers on their terms. As a result, AI integration is exploding in the customer experience field. No one wants to wait on hold forever or get trapped in chatbot feedback loops. Digital communications as a whole are leaning into IoT integration and AI smart assistants to streamline customer support, leaving everyone happier at the end of the day. And this technology will only improve with time.
3) Security Continues To Be A Main Concern
Between Zoom bombers in 2020 and the sweeping DDoS attacks targeting VoIP providers in late 2021, all eyes are on VoIP security. Any software becomes more vulnerable with additional ports of entry—and remote work means more and more of us are outside of closed in-office networks. Ideally, you’ve chosen a VoIP provider that prioritizes security through cloud security architecture and Privacy by Design. After that, we all play a part in our systems’ security—staying up to date on your specific role within the shared security model is essential to protecting your business’s communications.
4) Increased Competition in the Video Space
With demand comes greater supply, and we’re seeing that in spades with video conferencing. There are mergers between major players just as often as new platforms pop up. Our advice, besides choosing OnSIP’s incredibly reliable VoIP service, is to make sure you choose the right provider. And by that, we mean choose based on security features.
5) Analog’s Slow Demise Is Finally Near The End
Landlines have been inching towards complete obsolescence for a while, and the long migration is nearly complete. This works out because practically everyone switched to VoIP back in Spring 2020 anyway. For those still hanging on, odds are you don’t even have copper lines anymore—it’s all switching to fiber. So at that point, you might as well switch to VoIP!
There is one interesting debate in this area, however. Some people are championing the end of desk phones. The argument is that, particularly with a remote or hybrid workforce, most people would rather use softphones on their mobiles, or don’t know how they’d get a traditional desk phone set up at the home office. The latter argument is a bit moot in our esteemed opinion: VoIP phones are plug and play after all, and we all have ethernet ports on our WiFi setups. As for the former point, we politely disagree. Phone choice is exactly that—a choice. For those on the road, then yes a mobile softphone is absolutely the pick. But if you work from home and like your separation of work and personal life, having a desk phone is a great way to maintain that balance. Or maybe you just like the feel of it! It’s why we offer free desk phones with our unlimited plan—and despite what certain competitors may say, we haven’t seen a change in interest. Do you, but definitely do you on VoIP.
6) Number Portability on the Blockchain
Speaking of fun new technologies changing VoIP, our cloud communications technology entered blockchain space in the last year and will continue to grow in 2022. While most of us equate blockchain technology with cryptocurrency and NFTs, the core technology goes much further. The easy analogy here is to equate WebRTC with video calling—sure, Zoom is basically a verb now, but WebRTC also includes instant messaging, VoIP calling, and talking to your friends while playing video games. In simple terms, the blockchain is like a giant digital filing system, where information is stored permanently and all movement is tracked. Growing registries of phone numbers means porting will be simpler, faster, and easy to access from anywhere in the world—and more specifically, from any service provider.