Skype As Your Office Phone?

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Landlines, apparently, not only still exist, but people still use them. While the call quality might be slightly higher, so is the cost. If you are just starting out, or looking to cut costs, make the move to Skype.

Save some bucks

Skype costs $2.99/month for unlimited calls to the US. If you plan on calling internationally a lot, you can up your plan to $13.99/month for unlimited international calling.

Honestly, I have no clue what landlines cost these days, but I am guessing around $20/month for unlimited calls (and I bet that is guessing too low). Even if you could get it for that cheap, Skype would cost you $36 for the year vs. $240 for a landline.

Stay mobile

Skype is nice because you can use it on your computer, and you can use it on your mobile phone. They are making a few changes that will make it awesome to use on an iPhone. One, the new operating system will allow multitasking, so you can talk over Skype and run other applications simultaneously.

Two, you can now make Skype calls over the 3G network. That is a huge upgrade, and an awesome feature to have. The only downside is that Skype will be charging a “currently-pending” fee starting in September to allow 3G calls. Even if it is $5 a month, that is still cheaper than a landline. Plus, your office phone goes where you go.

Skype is better than using a cell phone number

If you are into videoconferencing, Skype allows it. If you want to use your computer as your phone, Skype can do that. If you need to use someone else’s computer to make a call from your phone number, Skype can do that. In other words, Skype allows a heck of a lot more flexibility than anything else.

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  • Tim Evans

    When I moved my firm to its present location, I chose to use Skype for my phone service. I even purchased a Skype-compatible desk phone.

    I found that at least 50% of the time, people I called could not hear me, resulting in repeated calls until they could. Many of the calls where people could hear me, they complained about how faint my voice was.

    I don’t know if it was the phone or my internet service, but I had to go back to a traditional land line if I intended to get any work done.

  • Skype is amazing.

    We were spending $240/month plus for a 4 person VOIP system through Packet8. Switched two years ago to using Skype + RingCentral (for our 800 number and auto-attendant/voicemail) and now for just $80 a month we have 5 skype lines with unlimited outbound calling, 2000 minutes on our toll free line. About $30 of that goes to having skype local numbers and unlimited calling, $50 goes to RingCentral for the tollfree number. It’s a great 1-2 combo.

    We use the GN2100 USB Headsets from NetComm. The clarity is great and it’s so nice to not have a phone on the desk.

    Skype also has a business control panel on the web that makes it really easy to manage all your lines and check usage stats.

    Only bad thing is that occasionally you’ll get a call connection that sounds robotic, but usually hanging up and redialing will fix it.

  • David Warner

    I find all of the articles about getting along without a land line interesting. I need a land line for a DSL connection to the internet and wonder how all the folks abandoning landlines connect. I cannot imagine, though perhaps my imagination is limited, that large numbers of law practices are relying on cable modems. So what is the connection method?

  • I’m not sure why it is hard to imagine a lot of law firms are using a cable modem, but they are. It’s generally faster, and you don’t need a land line.

    Actually, you don’t need a land line for DSL, either. You just need the jacks. We used DSL at home without a phone line at one point, until we upgraded to cable.

  • Richard Smoke

    I’ve been using Skype for several years at my residence and have seen it improve to the point where it is now an acceptable replacement for a land line. One question for office use though: Don’t clients expect to find a directory listing for your office phone? This is not available through Skype as far as I know.

  • You mean like in the Yellow Pages? The Yellow Pages are dead, man.

  • I use Skype as my “direct dial” number. The call quality is excellent and it follows me whenever I’m on my laptop. I have an inward dialing Skype number and have that number set to rollover to my iPhone if my computer is off or disconnected from the internet. Works well for me and it’s less than a 1/3 the cost of a land line.