Desk Phones Vs. Softphones – Which one is better?

Desk phones are going out of trend. In fact, most of the decision makers have already migrated to soft and VoIP phones according to recent Frost & Sullivan survey.

An Executive using VoIP

Softphones are more interactive, responsive and offer better productivity. It is hardly surprising why many firms in first world nations have switched to softphones and left PBX-based phone behind.

So what should you pick?

Here are some of points to consider before you make a decision.

Upfront Costs

A mid-grade, voice only desk phone costs nearly $100. Add video calling and other perks and the cost goes well beyond a hundred bucks.

Comparatively, softphones are potentially free. If your office isn’t completely mobile, you will need a few of them in the least. In case you don’t have hardware like laptops or desktops PCs, you will have to pay $20 per unit.

Ongoing Costs

A Desk phone is going to cost additional $25 to $30. This is is the least amount. The more your business relies on call, the greater the amount.

In comparison, ongoing costs in softphones depend on hotspot and Wi-Fi provider. If your employees are always on the move, it’s always better to invest in Wi-Fi and cellular and cloud plans than location-based services.


Most desk phones are compatible and easy to intall. Just plug and play – there are no complications involved.

Not every phone or device might work as softphone. There are certain factors which will determine if the device can effectively work as softphone. For instance the service providers’ software, the model of cellular phone or tablet and/ or their operating system. Ensure all your concerned staff has compatible devices and ask the service provider.

Work Styles

It does boil down to purpose in desk phone vs softphone debate. Desk phones are the primary choice for those who prefer only audio and seek that professional feel. Making a call through tablet just doesn’t sound too professional to many.

On the other hand, in cases where mobility is essense of operations, softphones may be the only choice. Desk phone is not an option for those always on the go.

Network Impact

Based on the usage, desk phones are location-bound, which means their priorities lie just in ensuring the sound is of optimum quality and that preference be given to voice and video over other traffic.

Softphones are mobile, so their priorities are different. Access points and hotspots should be available at common areas like corridoors, classrooms and conference rooms. The network staff will have to ensure that voice and video receive prioirity over other data traffic.


Softphones serve a broader purpose and are cheaper. But in the end, the decision is made based work style or the purpose. If desk phones are more logical based on apparent scenario, then they should be preferred. But if cost-savings and mobility are first main concerns; then softphone is the best way to go.

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1 Comments Desk Phones Vs. Softphones – Which one is better?

  1. Manish

    Each one has their benefits, and which one is right may differ for different employees. As mentioned softphones can help control costs, and they also allow for easy integration of remote employees. For some employees always being at their desk is the norm and the reliability of a deskphone may better suit their productivity.


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