VoIP Providers: The Ultimate Guide

Understand the technology. Find out how to get the best deal. Discover the leading UK business VoIP providers.

What this guide covers

The award-winning experts at Amvia have compiled the complete business guide to VoIP. This guide covers how the VoIP phone systems work, how much they cost, what factors impact cost, the best business VoIP provider, which providers have the shortest and longest lead times, the most reliable networks, coverage, and much, much, more.

If you wish, you can navigate to the relevant sections using the shortcuts below.

guide to voip providers
 
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VoIP service providers enable your business to use voice over IP. They deliver your phones, your switch, and if you require, even your data link, for a monthly rental charge.

A VoIP provider will assess the needs of your business and help you understand the type of VoIP system you need. Part of the service is helping you spec the number of calls and bandwidth you'll require to make high-quality voice calls. They will check your internet access to make sure you are VoIP ready too. The provider will wrap all of their services up into a monthly fee. This fee usually covers phones, the VoIP system and an allocated number of call minutes per month.

voip service providers

A VoIP phone system allows your business to make and receive calls over the internet using voice over IP. Voice communication is converted into data packets which are transmitted over your data connection instead of the public switched telephone network (PSTN).

A traditional phone system private branch exchange (PBX) uses the PSTN to initiate and terminate voice calls. Telecoms providers charge per minute for the use of this PSTN.

A VOIP phone system does not use the PSTN. The VoIP system sends voice calls over the data network. This is why call costs between phones on the same VoIP system are free.

 

what is a voip phone system?

The 5 main advantages of VoIP are:

    • Ease of management

    • Improved communication

    • Feature-rich applications

    • Lower operating costs

    • Better business integration 

A VoIP phone system is cheaper to run, yet provides you with far more functionality. These advantages are expanded on below:

 



 

what are the advantages of voip?
ease of management voip 

EASE OF MANAGEMENT 

It’s easy to set up, it's simple to add and remove users and creating hunt groups is quick. You used to have to separately wire a phone system, program changes using a consultant and add hardware cards and ISDN lines to expand. All this is simplified with VOIP.

communication voip
 

IMPROVED COMMUNICATION

Your staff can be reached wherever they are on landline, desktop, tablet or mobile. Connect your VOIP system with email, CRM and your support desk. You make your business more responsive by enabling your employees to remain responsive and available.

FEATURE RICH VOIP APPLICATIONS
 

FEATURE-RICH APPLICATIONS

All of the latest technology is available, as standard: voicemail, conference calling, messenger, video chat and, auto attendant. Advanced features such as Office 365 integration, file sharing, HD video, content suggestion, virtual meetings and whiteboards are available too.

LOWER COST OF OWNERSHIP WITH VOIP
 

LOWER COSTS

VoIP providers can offer lower call costs than traditional phone system providers. The savings don't stop there though. Buying a PBX used to be expensive; most providers charge a monthly rental. Management used to mean consultants but now you can manage your own system through a web portal.

There are three main elements of cost in a phone system. The calling hardware or software, the call costs, the management costs.

VOIP phones are now the same price as PSTN phones, calling is cheaper over VOIP as some calls are free, and call bundles are comparable.

Managing VoIP in an office is cheaper than a PBX phone system. If you have one or two phones the management cost is comparable.

Overall VoIP is marginally cheaper than a landline if you have one-five handsets. For 5-200 handsets VOIP is much cheaper.

is voip cheaper than a landline

A business VoIP system costs around £10/user/month. In addition, you will pay around £100/user for VOIP hardware. Therefore, a 15-user VOIP phone system will cost around £1500 to set up and around £150/month. This will include 5000 minutes per user per month to UK landline, UK mobile, and 03 numbers.

The four main components which determine how much VoIP costs are explained below.

how much does voip cost?
TYPE OF VOIP HANDSET

 

TYPE OF HANDSET

 
What type of handsets or desk phones do you require? The better and more feature-rich the handset, the higher the cost. Handsets range from £25-£500+
NUMBER OF VOIP USERS

 

NUMBER OF USERS

 
How many users will be using the system? More users costs more money. Budget for £10/user/month.
voip call packages
 

VOLUME OF CALLS

How much usage will there be? If you call internationally or premium rate numbers you may need a tailored call package.
voice-services-functionality 

FUNCTIONALITY

What functionality do you need? A call centre solution will cost far more than a basic SME VoIP system.

The best VoIP provider is the provider which offers the perfect fit for your business. Amvia is an expert at comparing the market – we do this every day. By analysing your needs and your budget, we can quickly recommend two or three of the best providers for your business.

Using Amvia will save you time and money. Best of all, we do not charge you for any pre-sales consultations. Amvia is a multi-vendor VoIP provider so we can create the best VoIP system according to your most important needs. Better still, we can install and manage the system for you. That's what makes us the best business VoIP provider.

best voip provider for business

There are over 50 UK providers. The major providers are BT, Virgin, Amvia, Surevoip, Skype, Vonage, Ring Central, 8x8, Mitel, Gradwell, Lily, Telappliant, Voip Studio, Voipfone and Circleloop.

Most providers have three types of VOIP package: a low-usage package; an SME 5-10 user package; and a premium higher-usage package. The major UK providers are covered in the list below.

voip providers
BT Voip Provider

British Telecom offers BT Cloud Phone, BT Cloud Voice and BT One Phone. Find out more at: https://business.bt.com/products/business-phone-systems/voip/

virgin media

Virgin offers Enterprise Cloud Voice and SME Cloud Voice. Find out more at: https://www.virginmediabusiness.co.uk/applications/voip/

surevoip Voip Provider

Surevoip offers three types of VoIP service; SureVoIP Hosted Basic; SureVoIP Single User and SureVoIP Hosted VoIP System. Find out more at: https://www.surevoip.co.uk/products/hosted-voip

skype Voip Provider

Skype For Business offers a VoIP solution as part of Microsoft Office 365. Find out more at: https://www.skype.com/en/business/

vonage Voip Provider

Vonage offers three plans: Select, Professional and Ultimate. Find out more at: https://www.vonage.co.uk/business/

ring central Voip Provider

 RingCentral offers four packages: Entry, Standard, Premium and "Ultimate". Find out more at: https://www.ringcentral.co.uk/

8x8 Voip Provider

8x8 offers a variety of X-Series plans. Find out more at: https://www.8x8.com/uk/voip-business-phone-systems/by-business-size/small-business

Mitel Voip Provider

Mitel offers three business VoIP services: Essential, Premier and Elite. Find out more at: https://www.mitel.com/en-gb#mitel

Gradwell Voip Provider

Gradwell offers three VoIP packages: Single User, Multi-User and a package with calls included. Find out more at: https://www.gradwell.com/calls/

lily Voip Provider

Lily Communications offers a hosted phone system called Lily Cloud. Find out more here: https://www.lilycomms.co.uk/solutions/business-phone-systems/hosted-phone-systems

telappliant Voip Provider

Telappliant offers four types of VoIP provider services: Starter, Plus, Premium and Enterprise. Find out more here: https://www.telappliant.com/products/communications/phone-systems/

voip studio Voip Provider

VoIP Studio has three different VoIP plans: Pay As You Go, National" and "International". Find out more here: https://voipstudio.com/pricing/gbp/

voipfone Voip Provider

Voipfone offers two packages, Pay As You Go and Unlimited. Find out more here: https://www.voipfone.co.uk/

circleloop Voip Provider

CircleLoop offers two packages: Pay As You Go and Unlimited. Find out more here: https://www.circleloop.com/pricing

The best UK business VOIP provider offers a package that is most suited to your business. This comparison enables you to quickly identify which UK provider will most suit your business needs.

top rated and best uk business voip providers
BT Voip Provider

BT voip

BT Cloud Phone

Basic £13/user
Connect £18/user
Collaborate £23/user
 
500 minutes per user included
 
24-month contract
 

 

virgin media

virgin voip

Virgin Cloud Voice

From£10.50/user
 
 
 
Add on call minutes per user
 
36-month contract
 
surevoip Voip Provider

240 X 60 OK rating

SureVoIP hosted

Single User £5/user
Hosted Basic £11/user
Hosted VoIP System £20/user
 
Add on call minutes per user
 
3-month contract
skype Voip Provider

skype voip

Skype Business

Enterprise 1 £6/user
Enterprise 2 £17.60/user
Enterprise 3 £30.80/user
 
60 minutes per user included
 
12-month contract
 

 

vonage Voip Provider

voyage voip

Vonage Business

Select £9/user
Professional 2 £12/user
Ultimate £16/user
 
Unlimited calling with Ultimate
 
12-month contract
 

 

ring central Voip Provider

ringcentral voip

RingCentral Office

Entry £7.99/user
Standard £14.99/user
Premium £19.99/user
Ultimate £24.99/user
 
Ultimate 4000 minutes/month/user
 
30-day contract 

 

8x8 Voip Provider

8x8 voip provider

8x8 Virtual Office

X2 £18/user
X5 £32/user
X8 £45/user
 
 
Unlimited International Calling
 
 
12-month contract

 

Mitel Voip Provider

Mitel Voip package provider

Mitel Cloud

Essentials From £13.59/user
Premier From £17.84/user
Elite From £23.79/user
 
 
Unlimited Calling
 
 
12-month contract

 

Gradwell Voip Provider

Gradwell voip

Gradwell VoIP

Single User £5/user
Multi-User £10/user
VoIP + Calls £20/user
 
 
3000 Landline 1000 Mobile With VoIP + Calls
  
12-month contract

 

lily Voip Provider

lily voip

Lily VoIP

Custom Quote/user
 
 
Unlimited Calling
 
 
12-month minimum contract

 

telappliant Voip Provider
telappliant

VoIP Office

Starter £4.99/user
Plus £11.99/user
Premium £17.99/user
 
 
Add on minutes/month/user
 
 
12/24/36 month contracts

 

voip studio Voip Provider
voip studio

VoIPstudio

PAYG £4.99/user
National £9.99/user
International £19.99/user
 
 
2000 minutes National/International
 
30-day contract

 

voipfone Voip Provider

voipfone

Voipfone

PAYG £1/user
Unlimited £19.99/user
 
 
Unlimited calling option
 
 
12-month contract

 

circleloop Voip Provider

circle loop voip

CircleLoop

PAYG £4.99/user
Unlimited £9.99/user
 
Unlimited calling to UK, USA, Canada, Ireland
 
30-day contract

 

Performing a VoIP comparison is proven to be the most effective way of reducing costs and ensuring you get the best deal. VoIP providers are continually amending their prices and adding functionality.

Use Amvia's experts to identify the right deal, at the best price.

Did you know it is often cheaper to buy a VoIP service through a wholesale partner than directly from the VoIP provider? With 100s of providers of voice over IP in the UK, comparing providers can be an arduous task. That's why Amvia built AmviaSearch™, a VoIP comparison tool enabling you to search all providers and get side-by-side pricing in a couple of clicks. You can even compare VoIP compatible internet connection lines too!

amvia search data

How the VoIP comparison works

It's the easiest way to find the best deal at your business location

select your location to compare
Specify the spec of VoIP system
Choose number of users, the functionality you need, within the budget you set.
compare voip providers
Compare VoIP providers
Compare all prices side by side
voip comparison
Select VoIP provider
Select the best provider that meets all of your needs.

Compare all these providers, in a couple of clicks

Make a VoIP provider comparison simple. In just a couple of clicks, you can check providers and get a side-by-side comparison of prices.

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The best VoIP phone is the ideal phone for your communication needs. We have categorised budget, value and feature-rich phones. The best budget range is the Yealink SIP range, the best value phones are the Htek UC range, the best feature phones are the Polycom Soundpoint range.

 

Find out more about each of these phones in the detailed breakdown below.

what is the best voip phone?

The best VoIP phone if you are on a budget is the Yealink SIP range.

Although the Yealink SIP range is designed for buyers on a budget, it still offers a lot of value. Target price: £40/handset

Pros:

  • Price
  • Call hold
  • Three-way conferencing
  • SMS
  • Anonymous calling

Cons:

  • Single SIP interface
Yelling SIP range

If you're looking for value for money, the best VoIP phones are the Htek UC range.

Although the price of this phone is relatively modest, the feature set is amazing when compared to the cost. This VoIP phone looks good, works well, is feature-rich, and won't break the bank. Target price: £79.50

Pros:

  • 3.5-inch colour screen
  • Context sensitive actions
  • Headset compatible with RJ9 port
  • Five-way conferencing

Cons:

  • None
htek uc voip handset

The best VoIP phone if you are looking for features is the Polycom Soundpoint range.

The Polycom SoundPoint IP range of VoIP phones are suitable for medium and large businesses with busy receptions, call centres and complex processes. Target price £75-400. 

Pros:

  • High-quality speaker and mic
  • High definition options
  • Simple and easy to use
  • Expandable
  • Call centre features
  • Advanced hunt groups and reception support

Cons:

  • Cost
  • Complex features mean can be complicated to set up

 

polycom soundpoint voip handset

The top five manufacturers of DECT wireless or cordless VoIP phones are SNOM, Siemens, Yealink, Polycom and Panasonic. Prices range from £65-£200 depending on the quality of the handset, the brand and the functionality. Our pick for value is the Yealink with a target price of £85.

You can see an overall review of each of these DECT phone manufacturers by reading on below.

yealink dect business voip phone

Snom dect phone


SNOM makes beautiful phones that work well. Worth considering if your business requires a cordless DECT phone service.

Pros:

  • Reliable and strong signal when linked to an M700
  • Best-in-class contender
  • Great signal strength and coverage
  • Robust hardware
  • Auto-provisioning easy to add to a base station

Cons:

  • Expensive
  • Base stations hard to replace
snom voip dect phones

Siemens voip dect phones


Siemens Gigaset is a best buy, and if your business is considering a DECT VoIP handset they must be on your list to consider. Market-leading technology backed by German quality.

Pros:

  • Long range
  • Excellent sound quality
  • Easy to use
  • Stylish product

Cons:

  • Not the cheapest handset
  • Menu can be cumbersome
siemens gigaset voip dect phone

Yealink voip dect phones


Yealink is a brand synonymous with VoIP, business telecoms and great value. If budget is a primary concern for your choice of DECT cordless VoIP phone, Yealink should be on your list.

Pros:

  • Low cost and great value
  • Robust
  • Easy to set up
  • Good range

Cons:

  • Lower battery life than premium brands
  • Menu and functions a little dated

 

yealink dect cordless voip phone

Panasonic voip dect phones


Panasonic DECT phones are good quality. If your business operates outside or in a tough environment, these rugged DECT phone options are a robust choice.

Pros:

  • Automatic volume increase when noisy background detected
  • Surrounding noise reduction feature
  • Bluetooth capability
  • Dust, splash, shock protection options

Cons:

  • Relatively short talk time of five hours
Panasonic dect phone handset

Polycom voip dect phones


Polycom is a strong brand in the business VoIP space. Although this DECT cordless phone is functional, Siemens, Yealink, Panasonic and SNOM are better options.

Pros:

  • 10-hour talk time
  • Good call quality

Cons:

  • Rather dated
  • Heavy handset
  • Delay on menu
  • Expensive

 

polycom voip dect phone

The top five business VoIP softphones are made by Broadcloud, Vonage, Mitel, Skype and Ring Central. A softphone is an app that you use on your mobile or office computer and allows you to make, receive and transfer calls just like a desk-based phone.

You can see a review of each of the softphone apps from Broadcloud, Vonage, Mitel, Skype and Ring Central by reading on below.

 

voip softphone

Broadsoft softphone

240 X 60 Top Rated

 

The Broadsoft softphone client ‘UC-One’ is a slick, technologically advanced, application for iOS, Android, Mac and Windows. It has to be one of the considered options for any business serious about VoIP.

Here's how Broadsoft describes UC-One:

UC-One is an easy-to-use cloud collaboration app that lets you call, message, and meet with anyone from any device in full HD Video. It works on Mac and Windows desktops, Android and iOS tablets and smartphones. 

broadsoft voip softphone client app
broadsoft logo
240 X 60 Top Rated

 

 

UC-One Softphone Benefits

MOBILE COMPATIBLE
Use on your iOS or Android smartphone
FULL HD
Use high-quality HD voice and video from any device or conference room
MESSAGING
Communicate quickly and concisely with 1-1 and group chat functionality.
UC-One Softphone features
VIRTUAL MEETINGS
Improve workplace collaboration and make meetings engaging with HD video, voice, messaging and screen sharing
MOBILITY
UC-One works on iOS and Android tablets and smartphones so you can call, message and meet while you’re on the go
CONTENT IN COMMON
UC-One unites with other business apps, to bring you relevant emails and files, so you spend less time searching and more time getting work done

Skype VOIP softphone

240 X 60 Recommended rating

 

Skype is probably the most well-known cloud based VoIP softphone application. Since Microsoft acquired Skype you need a Microsoft 365 subscription to use Skype For Business.

Here's how Microsoft describes Skype For Business:

Enjoy the power of communications and collaboration on your desktop with a familiar Skype-inspired user interface.
  • Enjoy full communications with calling, IM, presence, and meetings
  • Real-time collaboration within a meeting
  • Video-based screen sharing for better sharing performance
  • Deep integration with Office and Office 365
skype for business voip provider
sfblogo
 

240 X 60 Recommended rating

Skype For Business Benefits

MEETINGS
Free online meetings for up to 10 people without a subscription.
SCREEN SHARING
Share your screen or a file. Give and take control.
INSTANT MESSAGE
Send instant messages during business meetings to offer new ideas.
skype voip
POWERPOINT INTEGRATION
Present with interactive tools, with annotation, highlighting, and laser pointer.
WHITEBOARD
Draft, draw and edit together like being in the same room.
CUSTOM ACCESSORIES
Make your meetings even better with certified USB speakerphones, HD cameras, and headsets.

VONAGE softphone app

240 X 60 OK rating

 

The VONAGE softphone app is a free multi-functional app allowing you to make and receive calls, view your contacts and any missed calls, and access voicemail.

Here's how Vonage describes their softphone VoIP application:

Vonage Desktop­ App for Business Cloud is a free app that allows you to use your Vonage Business phone service from your computer. Make calls and send messages from your Vonage Business phone number using the integrated softphone, view your contact history with clients, see missed calls and listen to voicemails – all in one easy-to-navigate interface. It's almost like a softphone app, but better.

VONAGE VOIP PROVIDER
vonage-logo-2
SUPPLIER RATING

4 star rating

 

VONAGE Softphone Benefits

TEAM MESSAGING
Access all the power of team messaging right from your mobile, web and desktop with VonageFlow
CHAT
Chat with one or multiple colleagues on the account with group messaging
BUSINESS CONTACTS
Save your business contacts with Vonage Business; view them on Mobile App or Desktop­ App
Screen Shot 2019-01-08 at 20.35.36
AVAILABILITY
View call presence of your colleagues on the account
ONE NUMBER
Send and receive messages and calls to any number using your Vonage Business number
COMPATIBLE
Desktop­ App integrates your phone system functionality seamlessly onto your computer for both Mac® and PC users

Mitel's softphone

240 X 60 Recommended rating

 

Micollab is Mitel's softphone, which is designed to integrate with the Mitel range of business VoIP services.

Here's how Mitel describes Micollab:

With the MiCollab Client Softphone, road warriors and teleworkers can enjoy the same intuitive communications management as Mitel Business IP Phone users from a remote PC or laptop. When remotely connected to the MiVoice Business or Mitel MiVoice Office via a secure network connection, mobile users can make and receive calls as though they were inside the corporate network. The MiCollab Client Softphone also lets features call recording on your computer, unified communications, add customized ring tones, and configure HID-compliant USB devices through an intuitive user interface. 

mitel micollab
mitel-logo
 
240 X 60 Recommended rating

Mitel Softphone Benefits

EVERYTHING IN ONE PLACE
Remove the need to flip between multiple apps to get the job done by providing employees with a single application for voice, video, messaging, presence, audio conferencing, mobility and team collaboration
ENHANCE TEAMWORK
Keep up with projects, stay connected with colleagues, and boost the sharing of knowledge and ideas across business silos. Extend the power of teams beyond your walls so they can easily and intuitively do the same with clients and partners
MULTIPLE DEVICES
Get a communications experience that’s consistent across all of your devices. Stop a conversation on one device and pick it up on another. It’s that simple
Screen Shot 2019-01-09 at 15.00.02
INCREASE PRODUCTIVITY
With collaboration, conferencing and messaging all rolled into a single, unified service, employees spend less time trying to connect and more time engaged in productive communications
COLLABORATE ANYWHERE
No longer is collaboration limited to huddle rooms and conference tables. Collaborate anywhere, on any device, with the same set of tools and a consistent look and feel. Whether you’re in the office, at home or on the road
EASY TO DEPLOY
Deployment QR Codes simplify the process for deploying devices clients or redeploying them by the users themselves

Cisco Jabber

Recommended rating

 

Cisco Jabber should be on your list if you are a medium to large business that values internal and external communication.

Here's how Cisco describes Jabber:

Mobility doesn’t have to limit productivity. Cisco Jabber delivers instant messaging, voice and video calls, voice messaging, desktop sharing, conferencing, and presence. Find the right people, see whether and how they’re available, and collaborate more effectively.

Cisco Jabber functionality

1200px-Cisco_logo_blue_2016.svg

Recommended rating

Benefits Of Cisco Jabber

INSTANT MESSAGE
Improve productivity. Use real-time presence information and instant messaging to reduce delays. View the availability of contacts within and outside of your organisation.
HIGH QUALITY VOICE & VIDEO
Communicate clearly. Get secure, reliable communications with Cisco Jabber’s soft-phone features, including HD voice and video, plus desktop sharing.
COLLABORATE
Go where you need to go. Access all of Cisco Jabber’s features while mobile, including video conferencing, with the same ease of use found on the desktop.
Screen Shot 2019-01-09 at 16.27.36
CONNECT WITH MS OFFICE
Keep things simple. Access Cisco Jabber directly from Microsoft Office applications. Easily click to initiate chat, voice or video calls, or multiparty conferences.
TEAM FUNCTION
This new deployment option uses Webex for modern messaging while keeping your existing on-premises calling functionality.
ACTIVE CONTROLS
You now have more control with features like meeting roster, participant controls, customizable layouts, and more flexible screen sharing.
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