Business VoIP Providers Comparison: OnSIP Versus ShoreTel Sky–Pricing, Features, Phones, Support

OnSIP and ShoreTel Sky are both great VoIP service options for businesses. You can get a complete business communications system with either vendor and reduce your business phone service costs. If you are using an analog phone system, your savings may be fairly dramatic. You can also gain access to great features with your phone system and accomplish more at work, thanks to the added capabilities of VoIP.

Voice over IP (VoIP) can help you reduce your communications costs while still connecting with customers, vendors and employees. In contrast to traditional plain old phone service (POTS) systems, VoIP uses the Internet to transmit phone signals from the caller to the recipient and vice versa. This is enormously more efficient and much cheaper than POTS phone service, enabling VoIP vendors to pass these savings directly to subscribers. Your business can reduce costs and become more productive with the services and tools offered by VoIP providers.

OnSIP and ShoreTel Highlights:

  • OnSIP—OnSIP has four different plans with different pricing levels, including a limited free plan, a Pay-as-You-Go plan, a metered plan and an unlimited plan. Costs range from $8.95 per month per user to $24.95 per month per user.
  • ShoreTel Sky has two plans at $32 per month and $40 per month. Over 80 different features are available with ShoreTel service.

In this article, we will help you compare OnSIP and ShoreTel. We will review pricing, features, phones and support.

Article Contents:

  1. What is VoIP and How Can it Help My Business?
  2. Pricing: OnSIP vs ShoreTel Sky
  3. Features: OnSIP vs ShoreTel Sky
  4. Phones: OnSIP vs ShoreTel Sky
  5. Support: OnSIP vs ShoreTel Sky

1. What is VoIP and How Can it Help My Business?

VoIP gives you access to reduced costs with your phone services, but it also allows you to access exciting features that can help with your productivity. Vendors have their own features, which can differ, but many of them enable you to track data on calls automatically, use conference bridging to bring large numbers of conference participant into calls, use analytics to study changing statistics, create virtual extensions for everyone in the office without adding additional infrastructure or purchasing a private branch exchange (PBX) box, and more. These are features that previously were very expensive or completely inaccessible, particularly for small businesses. You can place phone calls and other communications to other VoIP users or even to POTS phone users.

You can usually control these functions from an online admin portal, making it easier to make quick changes, add extensions or adjust something else about your system. These systems can be deployed quickly so you can start using these features almost immediately. Sometimes, you can get the entire system set up and deployed in under a day.

2. Pricing: OnSIP vs ShoreTel Sky

Both OnSIP and ShoreTel offer reasonably priced VoIP services. They differ, however, in the plans they have and how these plans are structured and priced. Both companies strive to offer plans at different levels so you have ranges to choose from.

OnSIP

This vendor offers four plans. From a free plan that has very limited functionality to a full-featured Pay-as-You-Go plan, OnSIP has something for just about every business. You can sign up for a metered plan or a Pay-as-You-Go plan if you want the great features but do not expect to use your phone service as often. If your business has a relatively low call volume, this may generate substantial savings for you. High volume users should probably consider the Unlimited plan instead.

Each OnSIP plan is structured and priced a bit differently:

  • Pay-as-You-Go—This plan is priced based on the features you sign up for, so it is very flexible. You can add the features you want and customize your plan, as long as you sign up for at least $49.95 worth of features every month, per user. So the true minimum cost of this plan is $49.95 per user per month plus whatever else you will pay for minutes and use. This could be a great deal for businesses that do not expect to have heavy call volumes, because you can get great access to features you otherwise might not have the budget for. You can add as many phones as you need to without raising the price of service.
  • Metered—This plan is priced at $8.95 per user per month, with a five user minimum applying to this option. So, if you sign up, you are charged for the minutes you use and you must have at least five users signed up.
  • Unlimited—This plan has a five user minimum and costs $24.95 per month per user for unlimited calling. This can help your business save money if you have high call volumes and expect to need a lot of minutes.

ShoreTel Sky

ShoreTel Sky offers a Full Managed Profile plan at $40 or $32 a month per user, with a predetermined list of features this plan purchases. Automatic Call Distributor (ACD), auto attendant and more than 80 other features are offered with this plan.

You are required to obtain broadband Internet service from a set vendor list provided by ShoreTel Sky in order for your plan to work. You may also need to pay activation fees per user, depending on how you choose to set up your plan and whether you choose onsite or offsite hosting.

3. Features: OnSIP vs ShoreTel Sky

Both plans have a wide range of features, including:

  • ACD Queues
  • Auto Attendant
  • Call Forwarding
  • Call Monitoring
  • Call Parking
  • Call Recording
  • Click-to-Call
  • Conference Bridge
  • Dial-by-Name Directory
  • Developer APIs
  • Geographical Redundancy
  • Group Paging
  • HD Voice
  • Mobile Softphone App
  • Music on Hold
  • Number Porting
  • Queue Call Barge
  • Queue Call Whisper
  • Ring Groups
  • Voicemail to Email

Other features, besides what is listed here, are offered by both VoIP services. There are differences, too. ShoreTel Sky also offers online faxing and outlook integration. OnSIP has a busy lamp field, free web softphone, web RTC app and ZenDesk integration.

4. Phones: OnSIP vs ShoreTel Sky

ShoreTel Sky provides rental phones and sells phones to customers, as well.  They have their own branded ShoreTel IP Phones for subscribers to use. You may not be able to use these phones if other services if you decide to switch from ShoreTel Sky’s VoIP service, which is something to keep in mind if you are considering an investment in purchasing phones from ShoreTel Sky.

OnSIP has a Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) requirement. OnSIP customers are required to obtain a SIP phone to make sure it is compatible with the service, however.

5. Support: OnSIP vs ShoreTel Sky

ShoreTel Sky and OnSIP both offer US-based support centers to contact if customers need technical support. ShoreTel also has knowledge center database articles in case you ever encounter problems you want to solve yourself, as well as a forum to discuss technical challenges with others. Both OnSIP and ShoreTel try to keep themselves accountable by posting their network disruptions for customers to see.

If you encounter a significant issue, both ShoreTel Sky and OnSIP have customer service associates who are trained to help you diagnose and fix the problem with your business communications system.

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