Hosted PBX vs Virtual PBX

Business Hosted VoIP Providers
Provider Plan Details Monthly Rate*
Vonage Business Award-winning Business VoIP Phone System
  • 40+ Business Phone Features
  • Amazon Chime Incl. at no cost
  • In-house 24/7 Support
As Low as
RingCentral Cloud Powered Business Phone System
  • Unrivaled functionality in 1 solution
  • Unlimited Calls/Fax/SMS/Conf.
  • Trusted by 350,000+ Businesses
OnSIP The Smartest Cloud Phone System
  • 50+ Features, Gartner Cool Vendor
  • 99% Customer-Rated Satisfaction
  • No surprise fees or contracts
MegaPath Cloud Phone Service. Built for Business.
  • 50+ Business-Class Features
  • No user mins. $19.95/mo/unlimited
  • Easy set-up. Professional Install.
Residential Hosted VoIP Providers
Provider Plan Details Monthly Rate*
ITP VoIP Phone Service
  • 2 months free for voip-info.org users
  • Free VoIP phone adapter
  • Scalable unlimited calling plans
Voipo Home Phone Service
  • Unlimited calling to US & Canada
  • Includes 60 international minutes
  • 40+ features
The vast majority of individuals believe that virtual PBXs and hosted PBXs are the same thing. The two technologies do share some of the same benefits that include providing lower cost service than traditional PBX systems. However, the two are significantly different in the way that they function and the benefits that they can provide for businesses.

Hosted PBX Systems

A hosted PBX is essentially a complete, enterprise-level business phone system that can provide outbound calls in addition to inbound routing. Companies that have more than a dozen employees and those that handle large numbers of calls should generally go with a hosted system as it will better suit their needs.

A hosted PBX provider will usually completely replace an organization's existing phone company. With this, a company will often need to switch to using IP phones, and all voice communications will go through a router that is connected to a broadband Internet connection. These systems are ideal for companies that are geographically disbursed and have more than one location as they provide a main number that handles all incoming calls. From the main number, outside parties are able to reach the person who they are trying to speak with using extension dialing. In addition, a hosted PBX will generally provide companies with things like auto attendants, conference calls, call holding, voicemail to email messaging and call forwarding. This is essentially a complete solution that mimics a physical PBX but comes at a much lower cost as companies are able to take advantage of SIP trunking and calling that is cheaper than what they would pay with a traditional phone company.

Virtual PBX Systems

A virtual PBX system is essentially part of a hosted PBX and is not exactly a full voice communications system by itself. These systems allow businesses to transmit incoming calls and route them to the appropriate person in addition to providing them with an automated answering service. Calls may be routed to VoIP extensions, cell phones or landlines.

While they may lack some of the features that come with a full hosted PBX, a virtual PBX system can be great for smaller businesses and those that utilize remote teams. The costs associated with setting up and maintaining a virtual PBX can be very low compared to a hosted system or physical PBX, and companies can utilize SIP trunking to forward virtual direct inward dial numbers to any phone that they would like. People can even utilize low-cost software phones with a virtual PBX. These systems may also provide options that allow for follow me or find me service and other types of advanced call forwarding.

However, business owners who are thinking about implementing a virtual PBX system should keep in mind that this technology is only capable of dealing with inbound calls. They will still need to maintain some sort of system to make outgoing calls to clients. While they may utilize something like business VoIP to reduce costs, they will still need to pay an additional amount for calls that employees make. In addition, virtual PBX systems do not come with extension dialing that can be used to connect employees, and they also do not have any call control options.

The Bottom Line

Virtual PBX and hosted PBX systems are similar in many ways, but they have quite a few differences. It is often best for companies to start out with a virtual PBX and move to a hosted PBX as there voice communication needs grow. With this, organizations can get exactly what they need out of their telecommunications system in a way that can scale with business growth while lowering overall expenses.

See also

Created by: admin, Last modification: Mon 18 of May, 2015 (17:47 UTC)
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