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How Reliable Would Your Phone System Be in a Disaster?


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2 min read

Cloud-based business phone systems are powerful tools for modern communications, but for some potential buyers, cloud services raise concerns about reliability. After all, for many businesses, downtime directly impacts revenue.

Since day one, RingCentral has been designed with reliability in mind. Early on, we made a strategic decision to build our own network, which allows RingCentral to provide carrier-grade reliability and outstanding call quality. Here’s how our network keeps your business up and running even in the face of disaster.

RingCentral is fully redundant geographically in every location where we operate. This is a key differentiator between RingCentral and our competitors, many of whom do not have international redundancy built into their systems. This redundancy helps RingCentral maintain service to customers through natural disasters, such as severe storms or earthquakes, as well as human-made disasters like hardware failures. RingCentral maintains a direct trunk connection with the PSTN and does not rely on multiple hops through aggregators. The goal is enabling all calls to make one hop to their destination. As a result, RingCentral has high mean opinion scores—an important indicator of quality.

When considering cloud phone solutions, you may think that virtual solutions are less robust than traditional hardware, when in fact the opposite is true. RingCentral’s redundant systems ensure that even when there is a problem, services can continue uninterrupted. The RingCentral platform has been architected to support failover conditions in case of emergency. Using SIP-trunking, RingCentral provides real-time disaster recovery by switching active services from one data center to another. Thanks to redundant internet connections, our fax, voice, voicemail, and conferencing services will all continue to operate without interruption. RingCentral is built with geographically distributed operations so that service continues if one location is not available. This provides our customers around the globe with service reliability unmatched by both traditional hardware and other cloud-based systems that don’t have the redundancy we’ve built in from the start.

In addition to disaster recovery, RingCentral’s systems are designed to continually monitor the end-to-end performance of our network to ensure call quality, completion rates, and service availability remains at peak levels. We have alarms in place to warn of widespread, significant drops in endpoint performance. RingCentral also monitors network configurations and proactively notifies customers when problems arise.

For example, a customer with 100 lines experienced a decrease in call quality every afternoon at the same time. RingCentral reviewed network settings and discovered that the customer’s IT department ran a remote backup at the same time every afternoon, effectively consuming all the available bandwidth. As a result, by proactively monitoring and reviewing the network settings, RingCentral prioritized the network traffic and successfully resolved the customer’s issue.

RingCentral also utilizes a next-generation audio technology called Opus, designed for interactive real-time audio transmission over the internet. Opus includes very robust protection against packet loss and jitter as well as other capabilities designed to compensate for network issues. RingCentral uses Opus on all software end-clients and mobile apps. The resulting call quality is a key competitive differentiator as many of our competitors have yet to implement the Opus codec.

RingCentral’s robust platform is built from the ground up with disaster recovery in mind. Keeping you open for business is our top priority, and our robust business phone service is monitored 24/7/365 to provide the most reliable communications for your company.

Originally published Jan 30, 2017, updated Aug 12, 2020

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