Vitelity SIP Trunking
When you use SIP trunking, you no longer make your phone calls through the twisted-pair copper-wires of the phone company. You connect your PBX to the Internet. Your Internet Telephony Service Provider, in this case a company called Vitelity, takes calls made on your office PBX and makes them compatible with VoIP technologies, routes them as far as they can using the Internet, and then, if necessary, back onto the POTS (Plain Old Telephone System, also known as the PSTN, or Public Switched Telephone Network) if needed, to complete the call.
People generally switch to VoIP and SIP trunking because it can save them money on their phone service versus running calls over the regular phone system. Many companies report as much as a 70% drop in costs. There will be some up front costs because you will need specialized hardware and software to use VoIP, but you should be able to recoup your costs in short order.
Vitelity Link Service is a no-commitment, pay-as-you-go service for small and medium businesses that starts at just $35 per month for the “dial-tone”. A local phone number in most areas of the U.S., with unlimited incoming calls from the “lower 48”, costs $7.95 per month with a $1 activation fee and outgoing call terminations cost 1.44¢ per minute for calls terminating anywhere in the U.S. Custom toll-free and V-fax numbers are also available at an extra charge. Local and toll-free numbers can also be ported over.
With phone company service, you calculated how many concurrent calls you wanted to be able to support, and got that many incoming lines. With SIP trunking, the limiting factor isn’t lines, it is bandwidth. An average call uses around 65kbps (65,000 bits per second). SIP trunks carry VoIP signals along with your Internet traffic, so it is a good idea to work with your ITSP to determine how many calls you can support with your available bandwidth.
Vitelity supports SIP and IAX protocols and supports several compression/decompression (codec) protocols. In larger markets, Vitelity can bring in to your office a T-1 line (1.544 megabits/second) or enough to carry 23 average phone calls at once.
A variety of features are available through Vitelity, all on an a la carte pricing model, including:
- Enhanced 411 (99¢ per call)
- Outbound caller ID name ($10 per number)
- Call forwarding (2.8¢ – 3.5¢ per minute)
- Enhanced 911 ($1.49/number)
- Virtual PRI – If you need large numbers of inbound lines (pay by the line, not the minute)
- Voicemail – up to 1000 mailboxes
- Customer portal – An Internet-based portal to help manager your account and calls, produce usage reports, add users and more
In a review of several chat forums and review sites dedicated to this market, Vitelity earned very good marks for customer service and support. With few exceptions, the company was praised for answering customer questions quickly and completely. Even on those sites dedicated to complaints, Vitelity fared well. Customers felt the company gave excellent service and delivered on what it promised.
Vitelity is part of U.S. National Telecom, a Miami, Florida company traded over the counter under the symbol USNL. Vitelity, based in Denver, Colorado, can be reached at 1-720-257-5400 or 888-89VITEL (888-898-4835). Customer support is available by phone from 9 am to 5:30 pm MST.