Voice over Internet protocol (VoIP) was at one time ubiquitous within the office environment. It had been employed to make crystal-clear digital phone calls, to send large packets of proprietary information and to hold webinars with attendees from around the world. However, we have recently seen a shift in regards to the presence of this amazing technology. Why is this the case and what can we expect to witness in the future?
The (Slow) Demise of VoIP?
One of the first questions that must be asked involves the sheer popularity of this type of communications. If voice over Internet protocol was so very popular, why are we seeing a decline in recent times? The answer to this quandary does not necessarily involve diminished technological capabilities or a lack of effective firewalls. In fact, the reality is more associated with the ways in which modern organisations are conducting their day-to-day business.
It is no secret that companies are attempting to cater to the needs of the technologically savvy generation. It has been shown that millennials will comprise a sizeable portion of the workforce. This is quite significant, for the entire concept of "business as usual" will soon change (if this shift has not already begun). How will this presence impact the role of traditional communications and what does it mean for static digital technologies?
Mobile Computing and the Remote Edge
According to authoritative sources such as LinkedIn, there are more than 5,000 remote positions within the United Kingdom alone. In other words, a growing number of employees are now opting to work from their home or when travelling. This is actually nothing new, for the very dawn of the Internet began to usher in such changes. The main factor that is weighing upon today's market is that smartphones have revolutionised the ways in which we communicate with one another.
Modern devices boast a number of features which would have been thought of as fictional a mere five years ago. Dedicated work-related apps, SSL encryption, real-time video chat software and GPS tracking have all evolved to the point where many workers do not need to "clock in" at the office any more. Thus, the requirement for dedicated voice over Internet protocol systems has been vastly reduced.
Economics in Motion
It is no surprise that businesses have begun to embrace this trend. There are numerous fiscal advantages associated with working remotely. A handful of the most pronounced include:
The capability to track the whereabouts of all workers.
Download and upload times dramatically faster than in the past.
The most important benefit involves overhead. In-house architecture, physical phone lines, billable man hours and even the cost of commuting to work all weigh heavily upon the modern business. If an organisation is able to offer remote technology to prospective employees, it is likely to attract a proactive audience. Of course, the ability to save thousands of pounds per year has not fallen upon deaf ears.
A True Demise?
We have to take such a question with a grain of salt. Let's not fail to mention that past predictions are sometimes less than accurate. In the 1950s and 1960s, some scientists believed that the flying car would become a reality by the 1990s. More recently, a few statisticians claimed that the personal computer would experience an ignominious end at the hands of the laptop. Neither of these has come to pass and in truth, many VoIP platforms will likely remain in place for years to come.