When it comes to Skype for Business, a common question we often hear is – we already have Skype account. Why do we need Skype for Business?

As you may know, Skype for Business is the business version of regular Skype that offers more office applications for business usage. In this blog, we will focus on three key benefits to explain why you should choose Skype for Business over regular Skype: Cloud PBX, Expanded Capability, Stricter Security Control. Continue reading


Whether you have decided to deploy Skype for Business as your communication system or you are still evaluating to see if it meets your demands, checking Skype for Business requirements is an important step to help you sort things out and make a wise decision. Let’s take a look at what you need to prepare when deploying Skype for Business.


Choose Your Ideal Plan

The first step is to decide which plan you want to deploy. Customers can choose to purchase a standalone plan or as part of Office 365 plans which comes with Office applications, email, file storage and sharing, and more. Skype for Business provides multiple plans for different business levels with a rate ranging from $2 user/month to $12.50 user/ month.

  • Online Plan 1 and 2-Skype for Business online meetings
  • Office 365 Business Essentials- Include online versions of Office and email
  • Office 365 Business Premium- Include Office applications for desktop and email

Learn detailed plans comparison here.


Meet The Requirements

Once you have decided on your ideal plan, it’s time to get geared up for it. To maximize the full potential of Skype for Business capability, you would need to meet their requirements. Here is the list of the recommended components:

  • CPU: 64-bit dual processor, hex-core, 2.26 gigahertz (GHz) or higher
  • Memory: 32 gigabytes (GB)
  • Disk: 8 or more 10000 RPM hard disk drives with at least 72 GB free disk space OR Solid state drives able to provide the same free space and similar performance to 8 10000 RPM mechanical disk drives
  • Network: 1 dual-port network adapter, 1  Gbps or higher
  • Communication Equipment: Skype for Business certified Phones, Headsets, Gateways, Session Border Controllers.
  • Operating System: Windows Server 2012 R2 Datacenter OS, Windows Server 2012 R2 Standard OS, Windows Server 2012 Datacenter OS, or Windows Server 2012 Standard OS with required updates

VoIP Supply offers a wide range of Skype for Business friendly products including Polycom VVX410, Yealink  SIP T48G, Jabra EVOLVE 65 MS Stereo, Sangoma Vega 100 and more.


Learn How To Utilize It

Now you are ready to start utilizing Skype for Business! After installing and configuring the system, you can follow the video below to learn how to get started and utilize the basic functionalities. For more information about Skype or Skype for Business and other requirement details, please visit Microsoft’s website or VoIP Supply’s website. Good luck on deploying Skype for Business!

When it comes to video chatting, nothing is worse than having poor video and/or audio quality. In fact, most of the users could have a better Skype for Business experience if they put some effort into meeting the fundamental requirements. Let’s learn some Skype for Business video functions and how you can enjoy quality video calls.

Skype For Business Video Capability

In addition to the standard softphone functions such as answering/ending/rejecting calls, replying with instant message or audio only, and do not disturb setting, Skype for Business Video also offers four video layouts (Gallery View/ Speaker View/ Content View/ Compact View) and the ability to mute/unmute, turn off video or photo, set full screen or normal view. To learn detailed video functions, please visit Microsoft’s site.


How Can I Improve The Poor Audio/ Video Quality?

There are many possible reasons that can cause poor audio/ video quality. Here we provide four main reasons and solutions to help you ensure a good video chat experience.

Good Network Connection

Internet connection is always the top reason that comes to mind that can cause poor video quality. Make sure you have enough Internet bandwidth and stability to support the video calls. A wired connection usually has better performance than wireless connection.

Certified Hardware and Devices

Be sure to use certified devices and hardware for your calls to ensure the optimization of your call quality. See Skype for Business certified phones, headsets, gateways, SBCs and Skype compatible phones, headsets, video phones, and web cameras.

Right Location

During a video call, we tend to focus on the image from the other end of the call and neglect the lightness on our own side. Detecting the lack of brightness, Skype webcam system will automatically adjust the signal to reduce quality and brighten your image. Therefore, make sure the location you pick has enough light source and no other distractions such as noisiness.

Upgrade System and Equipment

Keeping your system and equipment up to date can minimize malfunction and avoid poor video call quality. Visit Microsoft’s website for the latest version of software and make sure your device and equipment are not outdated.

Once you meet all the requirements above, remember it’s always good to test before you start important video meetings. Utilize the test function in Skype for Business to test both audio and video device. Detailed step by step instruction can be found here.

For more information about improving Skype for Business audio and video quality, please visit Skype’s website or contact us at 1-800-398-VoIP or at voipexperts@voipsupply.com

As many of you know, Skype service is free of charge among Skype users. Actually, until today, millions of users rely on Skype service to communicate over the internet with friends, families, and even business partners. You certainly would wonder if you could utilize Skype in your business as well. To answer that question, we first have to take a look at the pros and cons of Skype.



Skype is well known for its less expensive service and easy installation process which are the two main unbeatable advantages in the industry. The fee can be as low as $0.02/ minute for Skype and $2/ month for Skype for Business. Simply download the software, you are ready to talk!

Covering almost all basic VoIP functions that users expect, Skype satisfies VoIP users with fundamental needs. Skype for Business further expands the capabilities such as the number of attendees allowed in the same video conference to better fit for business usage. Here is a list of the unctions you can expect from Skype and Skype for Business:

  • Call waiting and forwarding
  • Voicemail
  • Caller ID
  • Video calling and screen sharing
  • SMS text messaging

You can visit Skype’s page for more detailed features and functions. To learn about the difference between Skype and Skype for Business, please refer to our blog.



It sounds great so far; however, if your business requires more advanced functions such as call return and blocking, you may want to seek for other VoIP service providers. Also, Skype doesn’t provide emergency call (911) service like many other VoIP service providers or landlines offer. Therefore, you will want to have a backup support for emergencies.

In addition, Skype for Business is designed to be used as a softphone that can only generate calls through a computer, cellphone, or tablet apps but not on a regular telephone. To have the best communication quality, certified hardware is required. Visit our store for Skype for Business equipment and Skype equipment.

Back to our question, is Skype good enough for your business? It depends on how much your business needs for VoIP. For small business with a limited budget who only expects basic VoIP functions, Skype could be a great deal. However, for larger-scaled companies and enterprises, the functions and services offered by Skype might not suffice their demands.

If you are looking for a VoIP Cloud Service provider that can meet your unique business needs, please give us a call today at 1-800-398-VoIP or fill out the form below for a free Cloud Service consultation. Our VoIP expert will evaluate your case and find you a perfect match for your business.

skype 4bIt all started a decade ago when Skype blurred the boundary between international and domestic communications. Today, Skype has been used by over 300 million people all over the world, creating unprecedented bonds among people.

Well, that’s not the end of the story. Skype has further reached out to the business market, focusing on business communication tools people use at work. So, how is Skype for Business different from Skype? Let’s look from three main aspects: Capability, Cost and Security.


Skype v.s. Skype for Business



Both Skype and Skype for Business allow users to message, share files, and video chat. Simply install the software and prepare the required hardware, you are ready to chat! The difference is the number of people you are allowed to meet up simultaneously. While Skype allows you to have up to 25 people on group calls with 10 people video enabled, Skype for Business has the ability to raise the limit up to 250 people!



skype 4b-2Skype is free among Skype users but calls to and from landlines, VoIP cloud services and mobiles are not free. Although they require Skype credits, many less expensive call plans are available for you to avoid hefty international call charges.

Skype for Business is not free in all cases. There are two basic plans available:

  • $2/ month per user with an annual commitment
  • $5.50/ month per user with an annual commitment

The cost of Skype for Business varies case by case, we encourage you to consult with Microsoft for a proper calculation. Visit our website for more detailed information.



Both Skype and Skype for Business offer privacy settings that protect your account from being disturbed by scammers. In most cases, your account is secure and it requires some effort for criminals to invade. However, Skype for Business allow you to have better controls. In addition to the authentication and encryption for producing and archiving private communications, it also allows Skype providers to control their guests’ accounts. They can easily disable or enable certain functions or calls to make the communication more efficient.

Depending on your needs, Skype for Business could be a cost-effective substitute for other VoIP services considering the functions and costs. If you are interested in learning more about Skype and Skype for Business, please visit our website, or Skype’s website or simply give us a call at 1-800-398-VoIP, Our VoIP experts are here to help and will be happy to assist you with any questions you have!

I recently wrote this post, VoIP Q & A: Phoenix Audio Speakerphone and Polycom RealPresence Group 300 Video Conferencing, in which I included some misinformation about the capabilities of the Polycom RealPresence Group 300 video conferencing system.

This question had been submitted to VoIP Supply:

“Is it possible to use the Polycom Realpresence Group 300 with online services such as Skype or Go To Meeting?”

I mistakenly wrote that “yes” you can use Skype and GoToMeeting with the RealPresence Group 300 because it is standards based.

Rookie mistake.

Thankfully Michael Graves of Graves on SOHO Technology called me out on it in his post, A VoIP Supply Q&A Batting .500!.

I was confusing the Polycom RealPresence CloudAXIS Suite with “standards based.”

Click here for my original, and now updated, post and click here to read Graves’ full explanation of the differences between desktop and room-based video conferencing solutions.

Thanks again to Graves for pointing me in the right direction and helping us all get the right information!

Note:  This post was updated with new information on August 6, 2014 pertaining to the Polycom video conferencing system mentioned below.

Questions about VoIP devices and services are regularly submitted to VoIPSupply.com through a technical support ticket or via the “Ask The Expert” tab on our product pages.

We respond to these requests directly but more often than not, this Q & A would be helpful for lots of other folks.

Below are your VoIP questions answered – Real questions from real people  just like you.

Phoenix Audio Quattro3 USB
Phoenix Audio Quattro3 USB Conference Phone

Q:  Can I connect this [Phoenix Audio Quattro3 USB] to my PC and use it for a Skype call?

Your question perfectly describes the purpose of the Phoenix Audio Quattro3 USB .

From the Quattro3 datasheet:

The USB outlet allows you to connect to the computer for any VoIP sessions such as Skype, Vidyo, etc.

So, the Quattro3 will work with any computer that has a USB port. Its small size makes this speakerphone extremely portable but with its multiple microphones, echo cancellation, noise suppression, and powerful speaker you can easily use the Quattro3 in larger conference rooms.

Polycom RealPresence Group 300
Polycom RealPresence Group 300 EagleEye Acoustic Video Conferencing System for Small Meeting Rooms and Offices


Q: Is it possible to use the Polycom Realpresence Group 300 with online services such as Skype or Go To Meeting?

A:  The Polycom RealPresence Group 300 EagleEye Acoustic is a video conferencing system that’s perfect for your office or small meeting rooms.

The beauty of the RealPresence Group 300 is that it is fully standards-based meaning, you can connect to “millions of other standards-based video systems in use today,” says Polycom.

It also works with leading Unified Communications (UC) platforms (like Microsoft Lync) so you don’t have to add any additional hardware, like expensive gateways.

UPDATE: In reference to the crossed out text about – I was wrong about the Polycom RealPresence capabilities and Michael Graves was right.

Graves correctly called me out in his post, A VoIP Supply Q&A Batting .500!:

When Polycom uses the term “standards based” they mean their product relies upon H.323 and SIP, the two most common standard protocols for VoIP and video conferencing equipment. I don’t believe that such a device can be used to join a Skype or GotoMeeting call. Neither of those services support interop with hardware end-points like the Group 300.

Read his post for a full explanation of the often confusing world of video conferencing interoperability.

I confused “standards based” with the Polycom RealPresence CloudAXIS Suite which, according to a Polycom Executive News Flash a year ago in Q1 2013, would allow RealPresence users to “invite anyone, anywhere with a browser to join reliable and secure video calls” and would be able to support “Skype, Facebook, and Google Talk for simple click-to-connect convenience…beyond the firewall for B2B and B2C connectivity.”

But, as it turns out, in addition to my misleading information, the Skype component of CloudAXIS no longer functions.

If you read the Frequently Asked Questions guide for Polycom RealPresence CloudAXIS:

Important Information Regarding Skype Integration
Microsoft announced the discontinuation of the Desktop Skype API as of January 1, 2014. This function is
critical for Skype integration with the RealPresence CloudAXIS social directory. Microsoft’s decision not only
affects Polycom but many other vendors using the API. Polycom is actively seeking an alternative way to
implement this feature but until it is determined we will have a gap in Skype support.

The CloudAXIS FAQ does mention a Skype workaround for the time being which can also be used for “virtually any messaging application”:

Is there a workaround for bringing Skype contacts into a RealPresence CloudAXIS meeting?
Yes. Although Skype contacts cannot be imported into the CloudAXIS global directory, users can still invite
Skype contacts into a CloudAXIS meeting by simply opening the Skype application on the desktop, checking
on the presence status of contacts within Skype, then copying and pasting the CloudAXIS meeting URL in the
Skype IM window with a message asking the contact to join the meeting. When the invitee receives the
message and clicks the CloudAXIS meeting link, their browser will launch and allow them to join the call. Note
that this same process can be used with virtually any messaging application.

Thank you to Michael Graves for pointing me in the right direction.

For more information and background about video conferencing options ranging from webcams to desktops to room systems, I encourage you to check out Graves’ post and these other articles:

Last chance to register for the next webinar in our Grandstream Learning Series.

Thursday’s webinar, June 26, 2014 at 2 PM EST, will give you an opportunity to learn and ask questions about the many multimedia features of the:

grandstream_gxv_video_phones_webinar_voip supply_banner
Grandstream video phones combine Android operating system and apps market with desktop VoIP features and HD video conferencing.

We’ve joined forces with Grandstream to offer you webinars through the Grandstream Learning Series.

Next up on the schedule is your chance to get a first-hand look at the new Grandstream GXV Series of Android-based VoIP Video Phones.

We encourage you to attend to ask questions and learn how they can fit into your business communication solution because as Gina Narcisi at SearchUnifiedCommunications points out, “There’s no doubt that consumerization has impacted business needs, and employees expect more of the features they are used to using in their personal lives — like video — at work. ”

  • When: June 26, 2014 at 2:00 PM EST
  • Where: Online. Click here to Register
  • What: Explain how business communications can be enhanced through the phone’s abilities to make video calls, initiate video conferences using multiple popular platforms, and access popular business and productivity apps from the Google Play Store such as Skype, Microsoft Lync, Salesforce1, and GoToMeeting.


Grandstream GXV3240 Multimedia VoIP Video Phone for Android

The Grandstream GXV3240 is a multimedia Gigabit VoIP Video phone with 3-way video conferencing, a tiltable CMOS camera, and HD audio/voice.

The GXV3240 is a great solution solution for a high-tech school campus or a fast-paced business that uses their own API for custom apps with its integrated WiFi, a built-in web browser, and HDMI connectivity.

Android-based Grandstream GXV3240 VoIP Video Phone with Access to Google Play Store

Features & functions:

  • Visual: Generous 4.3″ (480 x 272) capacitive touch screen and megapixel CMOS sensor camera with a privacy shutter.
  • Audio: 6-lines with up to 6 x SIP accounts, free IPVideoTalk account including video mail, HD Wideband Audio, up to 6-way audio conferencing and 3-way video conferencing, speakerphone with acoustic echo cancellation.
  • Connectivity: WiFi, Bluetooth, PoE, USB, SD, HDMI, EHS with Plantronics Headsets, Android 4.2 OS, access to Google Play including custom apps with Google API and Grandstream SDK toolkit, integration with Grandstream GXV Series of IP Surveillance Cameras, and built-in web browser.

Grandstream GXV3275 Multimedia VoIP Video Phone for Android

Want an Android tablet on your desktop that can also make and receive voice and video calls?

Then the Grandstream GXV3275 is for you.

This a 6-line multimedia video phone with a 7″ color touch screen, integrated WiFi, a built-in web browser, and HDMI connectivity.

Android-based Grandstream GXV3275 VoIP Video Phone with 7″ Touchscreen

Features & Functions:

  • Visual: Large 7″ (1024 x 600) capacitive color touch screen and megapixel CMOS sensor camera with privacy shutter.
  • Audio: 6 lines with up to 6 x SIP accounts including FREE IPVideoTalk account with video mail, HD Wideband Audio, up to 6-way audio conferencing and 3-way video conferencing, speakerphone with acoustic echo cancellation.
  • Connectivity: WiFi, Bluetooth, PoE, USB, SD, HDMI, EHS with Plantronics Headsets, Android 4.2 OS, access to Google Play including custom apps with Google API and Grandstream SDK toolkit, integration with Grandstream GXV Series of IP Surveillance Cameras, and built-in web browser.

“The new Grandstream GXV3240 and GXV3275 video phones offer a unique user experience by combining the power of Android, VoIP, and video conferencing all from your desktop,” said Tom Costelloe, Marketing Manager of VoIP Supply.

Questions about VoIP devices and services are regularly submitted to VoIPSupply.com through a technical support ticket or via the “Ask The Expert” tab on our product pages.

We respond to these requests directly but more often than not, this Q & A would be helpful for lots of other folks.

Below are your VoIP questions answered – Real questions from real people  just like you.


Q: Is this [Freetalk Connect Me] only for Skype or can it be used with any VoIP [sic] with compatible voice codec?

A:  The Freetalk Connect Me is a Skype-specific analog telephone adapter (ATA) that allows you to make and receive Skype calls from your regular, old home phone.

The Connect Me allows you to switch back and forth between making Skype calls and calls using your home phone number. The diagram above shows how the Connect Me ATA is a bridge between your landline and your broadband internet connection.

The Connect Me isn’t designed to provide you with VoIP service.

If you’re already using VoIP to make calls, the Freetalk Connect Me certainly shouldn’t impede that if you’re looking for a standalone Skype phone option to make and receive Skype calls while you’re away from your computer. For more info, here’s a good Freetalk Connect Me video tutorial.

Jabra GN9350e OC


Q:  Is the head band size ajustable [Jabra GN9350e OC]?

A:  You should be asking WAS the headband adjustable and the answer would be, yes, it was, and in fact it came with (3) wearing options – Over-the-head, behind-the-neck, and on-the-ear.

The Jabra GN9350e OC has been discontinued and has been replaced by the Jabra PRO 9450 which also features those same (3) great wearing styles and offers (4) ways to answer a call via the:

  • Headset,
  • Touch Pad,
  • PC Call Manager,
  • or Keyboard Shortcut

For a full run-down of the PRO 9450, check out this video:

Stay Tuned

Check back next time  for more VoIP Q & A.

Thanks for your questions!