Communication is key for the smooth functioning and growth of any business. Whether it is internal communication with employees, or external communication with customers, you need a reliable and cost-effective communication service. With the enhancements in communication technologies, many companies are seeking to move towards VoIP-based communication (aka Unified Communications as a Service (UCaaS)) systems to replace their traditional landline connections. Hence, the ‘VoIP vs Landline’ topic is one which can certainly be considered “hot”.

Let’s learn about both of these technologies, so that you can decide if VoIP, landline or a hybrid of the two is more appropriate for your business.


Landline refers to the traditional telephones that have been in use since the 19th century. Landlines use the Public Switched Telephone Network (PSTN). The PSTN connects to your home or office over copper wires. Within the PSTN, a call is carried over dedicated circuits that remain in place for the duration of the phone call.

Initially the switching in the PSTN was done manually: surely you remember the scenes from the movies of yesteryear with many ladies in a room receiving calls and making manual connections! Later on the switching was taken over by purpose-built “switches”.

Initially the PSTN was based on analog technology. It later transitioned to digital technology which offers many benefits such as improved quality and the ability to offer both voice and data services.

To use a landline, you have to be very close to the fixed-line phone.


Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) is a technology that allows users to make voice and video calls over a data network. The network used can be public such as the Internet, or private such as that operated by a corporate entity.

VoIP can be software or hardware-based

  • Hardware-based: IP-phones connected to a network can be used to make calls
  • Software-based: software known as a softphone, when installed on your computer, allows you to make voice and video calls.


To use VoIP, you can be anywhere, as long as you are connected to a network. You can also use any device – such as your laptop or smartphone – to communicate.


A hybrid system is one in which your business is connected to both landlines and to a VoIP system. You could use the landline for making local calls, and use VoIP for long-distance calls.

A hybrid model offers the following benefits:

  • Redundancy: you can continue to make calls even if one of the two networks becomes unavailable.
  • Cost: making long-distance calls over VoIP is much is more economical compared to landlines.
  • Scalability: you can use VoIP to increase the number of voice lines for any seasonal load increases, and get these additional lines disabled when you don’t need them.

Benefits and Limitations of VoIP and Landline

In order to decide between VoIP and landline, it is important to understand that both these technologies have strengths and weaknesses. Maybe “weakness” is not the proper term, as each technology has a certain set of characteristics, which make it suitable for some situations, and not suitable for other situations. Therefore, we will use the term “limitations”.

Benefits and Limitations of VoIP

Benefits of VoIP

  • Persistence market research showed that businesses consistently move to VoIP because of low setup and low ongoing maintenance costs and considering other pros and cons of VOIP in telecommunication sector.
  • Calls can be transmitted through the public Internet or any other network. Rather than having two separate networks, you can have a single network for both voice and data. This automatically brings down the overall cost of operation and maintenance. VoIP is also an excellent solution for lowering the cost of long-distance calling.
  • Enables hiring of remote workers and enlarges the potential hiring pool
  • VoIP allows you to stay connected even if you are in a plane, somewhere in the desert or on a cruise ship. All you need is a wired or wireless network connection.
  • VoIP supports multiple value-added services such as messaging, voicemail, call analytics and reporting.
  • VoIP allows easier integration with existing and developing communications technologies.
  • You can make VoIP calls while on the move: 3G, LTE and 5G offer ample bandwidth and can be used for making video and voice calls.
  • You can use any network-connected device for making VoIP calls such as an IP-phone, laptop, smartphone, tablet etc.

Limitations of VoIP

Limitations of VoIP

  • VoIP is a real-time service: it functions well only with low packet loss and jitter, and requires low latency. Therefore, the network used to carry VoIP needs to be carefully provisioned to prioritize real-time traffic.

Benefits and Limitations of Landline

Benefits of Landline

  • Reliability is the biggest benefit of fixed landline service. The telephone call is transmitted over buried copper or fiber wires, which function even during hurricanes and earthquakes. For this reason, many businesses, even today, have at least one landline telephone connection on their premises.
  • In the event of a power outage, the landline will still work since it is powered by batteries at the phone company Central Office (CO).
  • e911–when calling 911, the dispatcher already knows the location of the call since it is coming from a landline
  • Call clarity is guaranteed
  • Landlines may be the only feasible option for locations that do not have reliable Internet service.

Limitations of Landline

  • As businesses are becoming more and more flexible, employees and users are seeking to make calls from anywhere and at any time. Unfortunately, this is not possible with landlines. Since 2004, landline usage has dropped from 90% of households having service as compared to only 40% in 2021. The trend for businesses is similar.
  • In comparison to VoIP systems, landlines are costly to operate, especially if you include additional features like call waiting, caller ID, or voicemail (this assumes that you haven’t signed up for a package which could include most features at limited extra expense as long as you agree to a contract term)

VoIP vs Landline – Which is better for your business?

Having looked at how these technologies function and at their benefits and limitations, we will now compare criteria such as features, cost, reliability, flexibility and scalability.


In terms of usability and features, VoIP certainly has the upper hand. You have a variety of features at your disposal that can enhance the overall communication experience. Therefore, if your business relies heavily on features like email access, call forwarding, etc. as a part of your integrated communication service then VoIP is a better option than a landline.


If your business requires a single telephone connection, then a landline is a good and reliable option. However, setting up multiple telephone connections can add to the cost of installation, operation, and maintenance. This is not the case with IP telephony as the system works on a single Internet/network connection irrespective of the number of voice lines you use.



When it comes to reliability, landline systems are certainly more reliable than Internet-based communication services. If you are located in remote areas that are prone to Internet outages or unreliable Internet connectivity, then VoIP may not be entirely suitable for ensuring reliable communication services.


To add landlines, you need to order physical connections which are costly and take time to implement. On the other hand, VoIP is highly scalable: only additional software licenses and bandwidth may be required to add additional lines, and all required changes can be made in very little time.


Several providers offer hosted VoIP solutions: you only need an Internet connection, and the service provider will provide a hosted VoIP server at its premises. The service provider will also take care of all upgrades and maintenance. This model is suited to businesses that need fast deployment without any up-front costs.

You can also choose to go with an on-premise VoIP server, which connects to the service provider over the Internet or over a dedicated MPLS connection, for example.

With landlines, the only solution is to have the lines terminate on an on-premise Private Branch Exchange (PBX).


VoIP or Landline or Hybrid: the best solution for your business depends on your particular requirements.

The team at Carrierbid can help you in developing the best solution. We can perform detailed assessments and help you in determining the solution that is right for you. Our domain experts can be reached directly at 1-888-706-5656 or through our website at

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