Technology is moving forward and nowadays VoIP telephony has become the de-facto standard solution for many businesses. In case you didn't know, VoIP stands for “voice over Internet protocol”, which is a technology that allows its users to make voice calls using the Internet instead of a traditional phone line.
Obviously, VoIP is used by businesses to provide customer service or organize sales. For the caller, there's no difference - it's just a normal call but on the business end, using a VoIP service can hook that call into your sales and marketing and help you gain valuable business intelligence.
How do you get this VoIP thing for your business? Well, it all starts with looking for a provider - like Fonality. Fonality is a provider of telephony and unified communications services for businesses. It operates in the US and Australia. Although it was recently acquired by NetFortris and is now marketed under this new brand, most people still refer to them as Fonality (so will we).
The company is well-known for the Fonality phone systems it produces - for example, Fonality PBXtra, Fonality HUD, and also a cloud call center. Although these products are well-known on the market, used by quite a few companies, and - for the most part - do their job well, they are still not without flaws, especially when it comes to pricing.
That’s why some Fonality users wouldn’t mind finding an alternative to the product they are currently using. As it turns out, there are plenty of alternatives on the market and one of them just so happens to be Bitrix24.
Although Bitrix24 is not strictly a telephony tool (it’s actually much bigger than that), it does features all of the classic features of a telephony product, in addition to a full-featured contact center where you can track all your client communications no matter what channels you are using (telephony, email, social media, messengers, etc.).
That’s why Bitrix24 is a great free Fonality alternative, especially if you are looking for unified communications or call center solutions. Read on to find out more.
Using Bitrix24 As Free Fonality Alternative
First and foremost, Bitrix24 is highly affordable and does not feature per-user pricing. Yes, the free plan does not feature telephony right away but you can upgrade to Project+, which is one of the more balanced plans. It will cost you $55 per month for up to 24 users.
Second, you can choose between cloud and on-premise installation (you get open source code access as well). Bitrix24 lets you rent local, toll-free and international phone numbers in 60+ countries. And most importantly, it already comes with a built-in CRM if you are planning to use telephony primarily for sales.
Fonality has been constantly rated as one of the best business VoIP solutions by many professional critics. In fact, the Fonality is a veteran player on the VoIP market and its hosted PBX solution gives enterprise businesses the most bang for their buck with high-quality calling and tons of customizable.
Fonality is priced at $34.99 per user per month which makes it a good buy for small and mid-sized businesses. Fonality hosted PBX service stands for private branch exchange meaning a switching system connecting phone extensions to each other and also to outside networks.
What makes the Fonality system unique is its heads-up display or HUD application that visualizes the entire phone system graphically in web and mobile apps for call center agents. It also gives you tools like:
- “whispering” (where agents can talk to each other without the caller overhearing)
- “I am style” chat
- quick access to video conferencing setting up
Plus, you can configure the auto-answer attendant with nearly unlimited greetings, on-hold music, and call routes. There’s also a feature called “the automatic call distributor” that helps agents manage multiple callers by funneling them into different queues like round-robin or sending a caller straight to sales or support.
Most importantly, you get great call quality as long as you get your business to spring for a static IP address with the bandwidth and latency to support it all. And that’s when we get to the downsides.
Here are some of the most notable Fonality pros:
- Call center
- Established vendor
Arguably, the biggest downside is the price. Fonality is not exactly super-affordable - plus, it also requires a high-speed Internet connection, as we have mentioned previously. Here are some of the other Fonality cons in a nutshell:
- No CRM
- No social collaboration
- US/Australia only
Using Bitrix24 as Fonality Alternative Gives You the Following Advantages
Bitrix24 may serve as a nice alternative to Fonality since it has some really competitive pricing and some other great features:
- CRM plus Call Center, all in one
- 60+ countries
- Affordable plans and pricing
- iOS, Android, Mac, PC apps
- Ready to use in 5 minutes
- Cloud and on-premise
Here is a nice little table illustrating the main differences between Fonality and Bitrix24 for you to compare and choose the option that’s right for you:
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are taken directly from related web sites and marketing materials as of September, 2014. Information and features are subject to change.
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