Simplest VoIP solution

Unanswered Question
Apr 2nd, 2008

Hello there,

What is the cheapest VoIP solution for a very small company of 5 users? Each user needs an extension and a voicemail. It would be a plus if this solution can support Automated Attendant to avoid the need of a receptionist.


I have this problem too.
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Overall Rating: 3 (3 ratings)
Brandon Buffin Wed, 04/02/2008 - 13:24

It depends. It can start at $3K or so depending on the configuration, number of phones, etc.


jarmitage Wed, 04/02/2008 - 13:58

Hi Bahman,

The absolute least cost approach for something like this would be to use an open-source VoIP solution.

Using this approach, the only cost would be for the commodity hardware, interface cards, network cabling and phones.

The downside to this approach lies in the support level you get (or lack thereof). Without purchasing a support package from either an independent contractor or distributor, you're on your own.

That's one of the greatest things about the Cisco products -- access to TAC, the knowledge base they have and this forum! Well worth the purchase price, but it does set a barrier to entry some really small companies can't get over.

Take a look at:



Paolo Bevilacqua Wed, 04/02/2008 - 14:11

The thing is that even leaving aside features/performances/support factors of a cisco solution Vs opensource, the prices difference is really not much.

Check a rackmount network server with decent cpu, add pots interface as needed(the good ones are not cheap at all) and check price against, for example, a refurbished 2801.

The PoE switch, you will need in any case and same for the phones. Eg the 7931G are hard to beat in price performance by the competition.

So when bought sensibly cisco can enter almost any account.


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