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Private Branch Exchange (PBX) systems
If your business typically requires more than forty extensions, or your needs dictate you need advanced functions from your business phone system, then PBX systems are often solution. PBX systems used to be extremely expensive and only affordable by huge corporations with hundreds of extensions. Though this is still case for larger installations, development of technology required has progressed to point where a powerful, fully functional PBX office phone system for a small business is able to fit on top of a desk.
Nearly all these compact PBX phone systems come with all features you might want as standard. You pay a premium for programmability and flexibility that a PBX offers, but in most cases price difference is not as much as you may imagine between that of a less flexible phone system.
Key phone systems are more typical in businesses that require five to forty extensions. This type of phone system uses a central control unit called Key System Unit (KSU) to provide features and functions that are not available using ordinary phones. An example of this is: key systems using a KSU allow one extension to call another in house extension, and prevents any other users from picking up a line that is already in use. Key systems usually come as standard with most features any business would expect, but in some cases they are often less flexible than a PBX phone system.
PBX & Key Systems (hybrids)
Though Key and PBX systems have some different technical features, these differences have become somewhat blurred over past couple of years. Many Key systems now offer features that were once only available to those who chose to install a full PBX phone system. Some systems also operate internally as either a PBX or Key system depending on software installed. Sometime these systems are often referred to as “Hybrid” phone systems.
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Jason Morris is co-author, search engine optimization and marketing consultant of Business Phone Systems Direct. Specialists in the supply and installation of business phone systems and accessories