Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) has become a vital tool for businesses in recent years, and as the number of companies adopting remote work continues to increase, so will the demand for VoIP systems. According to Business Wire, the global business VoIP services market reached $26 billion in 2020, and is expected to grow to $31 billion by 2027.
New trends and innovations in VoIP will make this fast-growing technology even more dynamic, mobile, and flexible. Keeping up with these changes can enhance internal and external business communications. These are the key VoIP trends to watch out for in 2021.
With many businesses around the world shifting to a work from home setup, employees making voice or video calls to conduct meetings will require consistently fast internet speeds. Businesses can achieve this with 5G, the fifth-generation of wide-area wireless network technology designed to provide enhanced response rates and communication speeds. This will reduce the frequency of dropped calls, enhance the connectivity of wearable tech, and offer improved data transfer speeds.
Artificial intelligence (AI) innovations for customer service
These days, AI is practically everywhere. It's the mechanism behind social media platforms' various capabilities, including the ability to ensure you receive updates from the connections you interact with the most. It also enables streaming services to recommend the best shows for you based on your preferences. Many businesses are also taking advantage of AI technology and integrating them into their VoIP system in the form of chatbots.
Chatbots are programs designed to interact with humans through messaging apps, live chat, or voice calls. They're used to offer predefined answers to simple questions or engage in conversation based on a customer's question. Advancements in AI technology will soon allow chatbots to become smarter. Aside from basic tasks of answering customer inquiries, chatbots will soon be able to gain customer insights, allowing them to recommend products based on a customer's purchase history.
Virtual assistants have also seen a steady rise alongside chatbots. eMarketer revealed that in 2020, 39.4% of internet users were using voice assistants like Siri, Google Assistant, and Alexa monthly. As innovations in language processing continue to develop, virtual assistants are expected to get even smarter, leading to improvements in various technologies including VoIP.
Soon, virtual assistants will automate mundane and redundant tasks like sending calls to voicemail or routing calls to specific people. VoIP assistants will also be able to record and transcribe meetings, allowing employees to review them in case they missed important details.
The end of landline phone systems
With more businesses moving to VoIP, landline phone systems may soon be a thing of the past. In 2004, over 90% of households in the United States were using landline phones; today, less than 40% of households do. This is because the advancements in VoIP technology have provided businesses with various ways to communicate with their customers, including video calls, chat, and SMS, effectively rendering landlines obsolete.
WebRTC merges with VoIP
WebRTC or Web Real-Time Communications is an open-source framework developed by Google. It uses application programming interfaces that enable peer-to-peer communication in mobile applications and web browsers. It was first thought that WebRTC would wreak havoc on the VoIP industry, but being an open-source framework means it can work well with most VoIP systems.
In fact, by incorporating the functionalities of WebRTC into a VoIP system, users can experience enhanced direct calls and peer-to-peer file transfers from web browsers. WebRTC's live video and instant call support can enhance your VoIP experience and eliminate the need for additional widgets and plugins. What's more, VoIP and WebRTC are expected to fully merge in the near future. This will allow users to make VoIP calls without the need to install anything on their end because they can call directly from a web browser.
If you're one of the many small- and medium-sized business owners in Southern California looking to explore the benefits of VoIP, give our experts at Complete Document Solutions a call.