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Microsoft recently announced that Teams now has 145 million daily active users. The number stood at just 32 million before the COVID-19 pandemic.

This has lead many businesses to replace their traditional on-premises phone system with Microsoft Teams, allowing users to make and receive external calls directly from Teams on their mobile devices, a headset with a laptop or PC, or Microsoft-certified IP Phones.

Organisations can add cloud telephony to Teams by using Microsoft’s own Calling Plans or Direct Routing.

Understanding The Technology Behind Direct Routing For Microsoft Teams

Direct Routing is generally the preferred choice due to wider geographic coverage, and unlike Microsoft’s own Calling Plans there is no per user cost (which is common with most cloud phone systems). With Direct Routing, you only pay for the maximum number of concurrent calls that you need; helping businesses make big savings on their monthly telecommunications bills.

We’ve seen demand increase as more and more businesses begin adopting Microsoft Teams. But we also know that it can be confusing understanding exactly how it works and what different technologies go into making it possible.

That’s why we thought we’d take a quick look at what’s involved with Direct Routing, giving you a rundown of what the different elements are and how they work. We understand that it can be difficult to get your head around – especially if you’re not part of the industry or have prior understanding about telecommunications.

How does it work?

Microsoft Teams Phone System delivers business phone services with all the features you would expect from a traditional phone system. To place and receive calls, Phone System users can use their mobile devices, a headset with a laptop or PC, or Microsoft-certified IP phones

To connect Microsoft Teams Phone System to the Public Switched Telephone Network (PSTN) to enable calls to landlines and mobile phones you have two options:

Direct Routing allows customers to choose their telecom provider to enable their users to make and receive calls in Teams.

In this scenario SIP trunks are connected to Microsoft Teams via a Microsoft-certified Session Border Controller (SBC).

Once connected and configured, users that have applied the Microsoft Phone System license can make and receive calls using Microsoft Teams.

What is SIP trunking?

SIP trunking is a very important part of how we deliver Direct Routing for Microsoft Teams here at Infinitel. In fact, SIP trunking is an important part of how we deliver most of our business VoIP services. But what exactly is SIP trunking and what role does it play in direct routing for Microsoft Teams?

By using Infinitel’s SIP Trunks to route your calls over the internet, Direct Routing provides phone system capabilities for Microsoft Teams and Office 365 quickly, cost-effectively and easily. 

SIP trunking is the technology that connects your business phone system to the much wider public telephone network (PSTN), allowing voice calls to be made and received over a data connection, significantly reducing your charges. You only pay for the maximum number of concurrent calls you need, as opposed to paying for each user individually with Microsoft Calling Plans (which start from £9.10 per user per month).

Our global coverage allows organisations to maximise their Microsoft licensing investment and enable voice capabilities for Microsoft Teams. We provide full PSTN replacement including CLI, local ring back, and management of call routing to emergency services in 40+ countries and number coverage in 100+ countries.

Microsoft’s Calling Plans are restricted to certain markets, currently available in only 10 countries worldwide. With Direct Routing, we provide more than 4 times the coverage, allowing your business to communicate with the rest of the world using Microsoft Teams. This is especially advantageous for multinational organisations using Microsoft Teams.

With the approaching ISDN switch-off, If your business is using Microsoft Teams, or if you are looking to replace your existing phone system, there has never been a better time to make the move to more flexible, efficient and cost-effective VoIP services.infinitel microsoft teams phone

What is an SBC?

Microsoft Teams is the fastest-growing business application in Microsoft’s long and successful history. More and more businesses are looking to make the most of their migration to Microsoft Teams and unlock its full potential by enabling business phone services. 

However, one vital element is the SBC (Session Border Controller). Without the SBC, you won’t be able to connect Microsoft Teams Phone System to your telecoms provider’s SIP trunks in order to make and receive external calls.

An SBC is a specific device that is built with the purpose of protecting the calls you make via an internet connection. Internet connections can sometimes become insecure – an SBC helps to regulate your connection and make sure that everything keeps running smoothly through the internet. It protects your connection from attacks and any potential hijacking or breach of security. It also regulates the calls you make in order to provide excellent quality of service and calls – making sure that your calls keep up to speed and maintain clarity through efficient routing. 

Infinitel use Ribbon Communications’ Microsoft-certified SBCs for direct routing. Ribbon has an extensive portfolio of Microsoft-certified session border controllers, making them the absolute perfect solution for connecting Microsoft Teams Phone System with Infinitel’s SIP trunks. Ribbon are one of the few vendors who are both recognised and certified by Microsoft. A Direct Routing solution that includes a Ribbon SBC is fully supported by Microsoft.

ribbon and infinitel

How do we deploy the Microsoft-Certified SBC? We provide a fully managed solution. The Ribbon Communications’ Certified SBC is hosted by Infinitel and we handle all telephony services, allowing businesses to use Microsoft Teams to make and receive external calls without requiring any on-premise equipment. We provide a true 99.999% uptime SLA and 24/7 support from our dedicated support team of experienced engineers.

infinitel direct routing diagram

Want to find out more? Get In Touch

Infinitel are one of the few providers who can deliver fully-certified, managed and hosted business phone services for Microsoft Teams. More and more businesses are coming to us in order to make the most out of Microsoft Teams and creating an even more powerful communications tool with direct routing. If your business is using Microsoft Teams, or if you are looking to replace your existing phone system, Direct Routing could be the ideal communications solution.

For more information on Direct Routing, Microsoft Teams or any of our services, please call us today on 0333 996 0029 or email us at [email protected] and one of our specialists will be in touch shortly. 

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