SOHO stands for small office and home office, and refers specifically to business telephone packages catered to customers operating out of and under that description. Traditionally, phone systems were way too expensive and impractical for either of the two, though the features were of course desired. The introduction of VoIP has changed all this, with many major providers offering feature-rich, unlimited packages, generally in or around the $20-30 per month range.
SOHO VoIP systems most typically include an auto attendant, voicemail to email, find me/follow me, and other basic features. The attraction of these packages is essentially that any business of any size, whether it be one employee or more, can customize their network to receive and handle calls in the same manner a large company’s IP PBX might. SOHO packages are especially alluring, since they are cheap, and arguably could be utilized without any hardware besides a PC, using a softphone or the like. Also, many providers will supply an ATA (for a monthly fee) and sell/provide IP Phones directly to consolidate all facets of VoIP implementation into one place, making things easy on the customer.
Prices remain competitive and low for SOHO VoIP, being many providers aggressively market towards small business – there is a wide open market and demand for these packages. The amount of perks and flexibility with SOHO VoIP is the biggest selling point, and as providers are aware of this, they are constantly vying to bring the easiest, cheapest, most versatile VoIP services for small and home offices. The following are some examples of major providers and what they might offer under their competitive small office/home office packages:
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