How does a virtual phone call work?
Thanks to rapid advancements in cloud-based phone system technology, virtual phone numbers are offering small businesses and startups flexible, scalable, and affordable business phone number solutions.
Once you’re set up with a virtual phone number, you’ll be able to make and take incoming calls anytime, anywhere.
Ideal for remote teams or a company with multiple office locations.
In this article, we’ll be delving into:
What is a virtual phone call?
A virtual phone call is any call made using a virtual phone number (sometimes called direct inward dialing or DID for short).
Unlike traditional phone systems and their traditional phone numbers—which were designed to work over one physically connected phone line in one physical location—virtual lines are not linked to individual landline phones or a specific device.
Instead, a virtual phone number can be routed and redirected between multiple devices and IP addresses.
Your virtual telephone number is essentially an online number that can be used alongside personal numbers on any device—even your personal phone.
You can make and receive phone calls from your virtual phone line whether you’re using your desktop app, iOS, Android, or any other internet-enabled device. That’s what make virtual phone calls so convenient for on-the-go business wonders, employees, and geographically dispersed teams.
Virtual telephone lines combine voice over internet protocol (VoIP) technology and cloud PBX (private branch exchange) to provide flexible business calling solutions for you and your business.
Oftentimes, virtual calls are used to forward calls to a business’ other destination numbers (e.g. business landlines and VoIP phone systems) in accordance with set call routing rules.
Benefits of virtual phone calling
Because virtual calls can be made from anywhere and on any mobile device, they offer businesses tremendous agility. There are many reasons why businesses choose to set up virtual phone systems:
1. You’ll be able to work from anywhere
A top benefit that comes with virtual phone calls is the ability to work from just about anywhere. With the flexibility to pick up calls on any device (mobile phone, softphone, computer), you won’t be chained to the office anymore.
You’ll be able to take up all those business opportunities without worrying about missing any important calls or text messages when away from your desk phones.
2. You won’t have to travel as much
As well as making it easier to travel, sometimes having a virtual phone is great for the opposite reason. Virtual phones mean that you won’t have to travel as much in certain scenarios. For example, you won’t have to travel to another location to meet with a client. Instead, you’ll be able to make a call—even over long distances or internationally.
3. Virtual phones make remote team collaboration easier
More and more of us are working remotely these days and virtual calls are making that possible. When your team is set up with a virtual phone system, it doesn’t matter where your employees are in the world.
That’s great for facilitating flexible working options for customer support teams. Plus, with more people out of the office, your business can start to enjoy greatly reduced utility bills.
4. You’ll be able to establish a business presence overseas
Compared to telecoms, virtual telephony providers offer business phone systems at competitive international rates. And, if you want to meet face to face that’s no problem. Many virtual phone services come with great call quality and video conferencing capabilities.
Virtual calls make international expansion an accessible and affordable prospect. With RingCentral, you’ll be able to activate your virtual business line, create local numbers, and take business calls to over 100 countries:
- Bosnia and Herzegovina
- Brunei Darussalam
- Burkina Faso
- Cayman Islands
- Costa Rica
- Czech Republic
- Dominican Republic
- El Salvador
- French Guiana
- Netherlands Antilles
- New Zealand
- Puerto Rico
- South Africa
- South Korea
- Sri Lanka
- Trinidad and Tobago
- United Arab Emirates
- United Kingdom
- United States
How does a virtual phone call work?
This all sounds great, but now you’re probably wondering how virtual phone calls actually work, right? To traditionally phone a contact is simple, is making a virtual call as easy? Let’s find out.
A virtual phone call is made over secure internet connectivity. These virtual calls are powered by VoIP technology which enables a multimedia communication system over the internet. All that’s required to make a virtual call is business VoIP software and a secure internet connection.
No cell towers in sight.
VoIP technology facilitates the transmission of voice data from a caller to receiver, over the internet in real-time. That could be over WiFi, 4G, or 5G networks. It does this by transforming voice data inputs into digitized data packets. These digitized data packets are transported over the internet, via an IP transmission, and decoded back into voice data for the recipient.
This all happens at super speed. Meaning that you won’t even notice a delay.
But what differentiates virtual calls from standard VoIP communications?
Even though virtual phone services are powered by VoIP, there is a difference between your virtual business phone service and regular business phones. VoIP applications also facilitate calls over the internet, but users can only communicate with other people using the same app.
By contrast, with a virtual phone, you’ll be able to call anybody, on any phone number, from and to any device. At the same time, you’ll be able to access a Cloud PBX server which provides access to features like call routing, auto-attendant/ virtual receptionist, and call management features.
RingCentral’s virtual phone system offers this very thing. Our web-hosted all-in-one communications suite adjusts to your unique business needs. Your virtual number will come with a reasonable pricing plan that will let you access your very own virtual office phone number from anywhere with an internet connection.
You’ll be able to mobilize tons of great features including:
- Auto-receptionist to automatically answer and route calls to virtual extensions
- Advanced features like call screening, call menu options, custom greetings, call recording, caller IDs, call forwarding (get calls routed to different devices), calling analytics, and business hours.
- Fax, SMS text messaging, and voicemail functionality
- Enjoy seamless integrations with CRMs and business productivity applications like Google Cloud, Microsoft Office 365, and Salesforce.
- Access to the RingCentral App on your computer, iOS, or Android where you can make outgoing calls, SMS, fax, and voice and text messaging.
How to get your own virtual phone number
Ready to set up your very own virtual phone number?
All you have to do is add a virtual number or numbers to your existing VoIP service via your VoIP provider for a small monthly fee. Alternatively, you can invest in a virtual phone system package from a virtual phone number provider, including a main virtual phone number and extensions.
With RingCentral, you can get a virtual number through an easy setup.
- Log into your RingCentral account
- Navigate to phone system and select phone numbers on the sidebar
- Under phone number, navigate to assigned tab, and select add number
- Select your country location or area code
- Choose whether you need a local phone number, toll-free number, or vanity number
- Choose a number from the list and select add numbers, then next
- Assign your new number to any of the following:
- RingCentral audio conferencing
- RingCentral meeting
- Click next
- Finalize and confirm your order
- Save your receipt to keep a record of your order
Virtual phone system FAQs
Do you receive a new number or can I keep my old number?
Do you do international plans?
How much do virtual phone systems cost?
Agile, flexible, affordable virtual phone solution
Virtual phone calls mobilize voice over internet protocol technology to transmit multimedia data like audio and video over the internet. And thanks to this fantastic technology, business communications have become so much more agile.