What is a softphone? How does it work?

November 9, 2020 by Ying-Hui Chen

If you travel a lot or work offsite frequently and you haven’t heard about softphones, you are really missing out!

What is a softphone?

A Softphone is a software-based application that is usually available as an app on your smartphone or PC. It is mostly used as the main phone or an extension of a desk phone.

Softphones have become a more popular solution to remote workers as it eliminates the need to carry a physical phone with you when you work offsite. It is also a more efficient and convenient solution to connect onsite and offsite workers. 

Read here to learn more: Why Using Softphones Is a Better Solution for Remote Workers

How Does a Softphone Work?

There are two main forms of softphones: Desktop softphones and mobile softphones.

Desktop softphones allow users to access UC features right from their computers without a desk phone. Simply download a dedicated app from your computer, features like chats, visual voicemail, document sharing, and more will all be available to you.

Mobile softphones give you the ability to connect with your team through your mobile phone. Through a dedicated softphone app on your cell phone, you will be able to call, forward calls, receive voicemail and chat with coworkers just like using a desk phone in the office.  

What are the Softphone Options on the Market?

Many VoIP service providers now provide a softphone option with no additional fees. Once you purchase the service subscription, you can download the softphone application at no charge. 

With the softphone, you will be able to take advantage of all the phone features you expect from a desk phone through an app. Here are a few examples:

There are also stand-alone softphone options like ZoiPer, a softphone solution that’s compatible with several VoIP service providers and PBXs including Asterisk, Freeswitch, 3CX, and more. 

Check out these 20 Free Softphone Options available to you here!


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