PBXs – or Private Branch Exchanges– have been a mainstay in the business world for decades. As a private telephone network, they enable individuals in businesses to communicate with each other in their working environment, as well as customers and the outside world.

With the increased adoption of remote work, as well as employees who are out and about more than ever, a traditional PBX just isn’t cutting it for most businesses anymore. And as technology has advanced and Australian telcos have looked at migrating away from traditional infrastructure, it might be time to start thinking about moving over to a preferred cloud-based phone system.

What are cloud phone systems?

Cloud phone systems – at their core – are similar to traditional PBXs. Just with the convenience, cost effectiveness and technological advancements ramped way up.

That’s because cloud phone systems are accessed entirely via the internet.

By using VoIP (or Voice over IP) you’ll be able to conversate with colleagues and customers over the internet, rather than the traditional infrastructure.

What are the key advantages of cloud phone systems?

This isn’t just about an upgrade for upgrading’s sake, there are big advantages awaiting any business that makes the leap into the next generation of phone calling.


The big one is mobility. Forget about missing your lunch break because you’re stuck at your desk waiting for an important call. With the convenience of a cloud-based system, you’ll be able to take advantage of internet calling and send the call directly to your mobile phone. That way, your client gets the exemplary service you always provide, and you don’t miss out on your banh mi.

This is only one example of how cloud-based phone systems will help your business level up in terms of mobility. Whether you’re on the road, at home, in a branch office or at the job site checking up on things, you’ll have all the advantages of a traditional PBX system. Using a cell phone – or even just a web browser or app – you can call a colleague’s extension, answer a call, or make your own calls using your business number. All with the convenience of caller ID and forwarding.


Imagine, your business has been booming and you need to put extra employees on in your main office. In the past, it was a costly, inconvenient and time-consuming process to set up the PBX for these new hires.

With a cloud-based phone system, the process is as easy as setting up a user online and getting their phone plugged in. This makes it great for businesses who have rapid turnover or may need to upsize or downsize dramatically depending capacity and current work.

Advanced features

Part of the reason that cloud-based phone systems are catching on so quickly is their host of versatile technological features. Offerings like video calling – which has become commonplace in today’s workplace culture – as well as voicemail-to-email, auto-attendant and virtual-receptionist all are proof points that make upgrading to a cloud-based phone system well worth the effort.

Security benefits

In the modern age, every business should be concerned about their data. If you’re not, you’re doing your customers a serious disservice. Because cloud phone systems are compliant with relevant regulations and boast robust data protection, you can be confident that your conversations are kept private when using a cloud-based phone system.

Lower costs

Anybody who’s worked closely with a PBX system knows that the upfront expenses can be eyewatering. Luckily, the upfront expenditures of a cloud-based phone system are much more reasonable.

Even better, because your VoIP typically takes care of the server maintenance and management, any ongoing costs are part of the monthly bill. This even includes support for when you need assistance.

The four top phone cloud systems

Now that you have an idea of what a phone-based cloud system does for you and your business, it’s time to examine the standout options in the segment.

Microsoft Teams Calling

Even If your business doesn’t use Microsoft Teams, Teams Calling is a fantastic option that’s packed in best-in-class features.

But if do you use Microsoft Teams, Teams Calling becomes an even more enticing offering. It’s extremely integrated with Teams, as well as the Microsoft suite of productivity programs. This means that it’s easy to share, collaborate and communicate with your team, no matter whether they’re at work or home.

Combined with video calling, file sharing and ability to use a business number on any device, and Teams Calling is an excellent option.

And since It’s developed by Microsoft, you can be confident that it’s reliable, secure and has a strong support structure should you require any assistance.

Google Voice for Business

If you’re one of the many businesses that uses the Google ecosystem – like Gmail, Google Doc and Google Sheets – then it definitely makes sense to consider Google Voice for Business. After all, it integrates seamlessly into the Google Workspace, acting like another cost-effective Google app that just ‘works.’

It even uses Google AI to help you save time by blocking spam calls and automatically transcribing voicemails to text – two big ticks if you’re time-poor and can’t have unneeded distractions.


If you require significant customisation and individualisation, RingCentral might be the option for you. Their core product by itself is impressive and focuses on giving you a complete cloud communication solution – from calls and chat through to workflow automation and videocalls.

But instead of simply only offering cloud phone systems, Ring Central also offers virtual conference rooms, webinars, and events and video solutions. They’re also AI-forward in their product offerings, and feature an AI first contact centre for your business.

If you’re thinking of scaling up or have additional requirements in the tech space, consolidating all your needs with RingCentral could be a good option.


If you’re running a worldwide business, you need a communication strategy that’s up to the task. And with global coverage, that’s what 8×8 delivers – using its patented technology, your communications are automatically routed to the nearest data centre. Which ensures you’ll always be able to enjoy superior quality video and phone calls.

8×8 itself is an all-in-one collaboration for desktop and mobile devices with voice, video, private messaging, and team chat all in the one browser. Plus, the program can also integrate with CRM apps and Microsoft Teams seamlessly.

Our verdict? Teams Calling

While all four options we’ve profiled excel in their own ways, it’s difficult to go past the simplicity, security and all-in-one solution of Teams Calling. The convenience of being able to do everything — from communicating via video call to sharing documents to collaborating together in the one window — cannot be overstated. Especially when combined with Microsoft’s exceptional data protection and competitive pricing.

Of course, when you’re selecting a cloud phone system, make sure you study the benefits, shortcomings and costs of each one. Keep in mind what you need today as a business, but also what you might need in the future. Will more people be working from home? Do you think you’ll need to add on more people that you currently have?

By being aware of all these considerations, you’re ensuring that you’ll make the right decision. If you happen to require more assistance in comparing options or want to speak to someone about your organisation’s specific needs, please contact one of our knowledgeable consultants.

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