Microsoft Teams is a key player in the unified communications market – and it’s easy to see why so many enterprises are adopting it. After all, its productivity-focused instant messaging, online collaboration and voice and video calling functionality fits today’s fast-moving hybrid workplace like a proverbial glove.
But before they can connect to Microsoft Teams Phone, enterprises have some choices to make. Should they choose Direct Routing or Operator Connect to enable voice connectivity? And if they opt for Direct Routing, which requires a Microsoft-certified session border controller (SBC), should they deploy it on-premises or in the cloud?
What Is a Session Border Controller?
SBCs are an essential piece of the VoIP network puzzle. Available either as hardware devices or software solutions, they are deployed at the border between an enterprise and a service provider, where they control the flow of data generated during communications between two different parties, otherwise known as sessions.
SBCs also provide seamless connectivity, enhanced security, quality assurance and regulatory compliance, as well as ensuring that emergency calls are routed correctly and prioritized above other communications.
Why Do You Need an SBC for Direct Routing?
Direct Routing uses SBCs to connect between the Microsoft Cloud – where the customer’s Teams UCaaS solution resides – and the PSTN. This allows enterprises to make and receive calls from outside of their organization while fully enjoying all the other benefits of Microsoft Teams.
However, before this can happen, the SBCs must be certified by Microsoft as being approved for Direct Routing. This certification is only awarded to providers like AudioCodes after their SBCs have undergone and successfully completed an exhaustive testing process, whose aim is to ensure a consistently reliable Microsoft Teams voice calling experience for end users.
Direct Routing SBC Deployment Options
There are two deployment options for Direct Routing SBCs:
- The Customer’s Private Datacenter – Here, Microsoft-certified hardware SBCs or virtual SBCs are deployed on the customer’s premises or in their hosted/cloud environment. This can be good for organizations that want to own and control their operation, and apply their own security measures, but maintenance can be costly in time and money.
- In a Public Cloud – With public cloud-based deployments, the virtual SBC is hosted in a public cloud like Azure or AWS, in a partner’s environment. This type of software solution can be more resilient due to wider capabilities in the public cloud and there is much less chance of service-affecting outages and downtime.
In addition, customers need to consider the daily management of their Direct Routing. Organizations that don’t want the responsibility of managing the SBC, or who don’t have the in-house technical knowledge to do so, can opt for a fully managed solution. If that’s what you’re after, then please read on.
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Cloud Session Border Controllers for Microsoft Teams Voice
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Quick and Easy Deployment with AudioCodes Live for Microsoft Teams
At AudioCodes, we want every enterprise to be able to take advantage of the incredible productivity-boosting powers that Microsoft Teams voice calling brings to the party. But we also know that many businesses simply don’t have the resources or the know-how to manage the migration to Teams themselves.
That’s why we created AudioCodes Live for Microsoft Teams.
Based on our market-leading Microsoft-certified SBCs, AudioCodes Live is an innovative portfolio of voice-as-a-service solutions – which is often hosted in AudioCodes’ Azure cloud but can also be deployed on-premises or in the customer’s cloud – for simplifying the journey to Microsoft Teams voice calling.
Our experts take care of the entire project from A to Z, resulting in a smooth, rapid and cost-effective migration to Teams for high quality voice and video collaboration. We also have Day 2 covered, managing and monitoring the solution and providing you with 24/7 support whenever you need it.
So if want to enjoy a fast, smooth and reliable migration to Microsoft Teams voice calling through Direct Routing, a fully managed solution like AudioCodes Live is without doubt the best way to go.