RingCentral Office

Since we first reviewed a number of years in the past, RingCentral has grown from a lesser-known model to at least one that is top-of-mind for anybody on the lookout for a business Voice-over-IP (VoIP) answer. Its flagship product, RingCentral Office, encompasses the entire core options clients anticipate from such an answer, and the corporate has expanded the platform through the years in order that it is now a real Unified Communications-as-a-Service (UCaaS) contender, too. What meaning is that clients can select to make use of RingCentral Office for rather more than voice communications. They can decide from choices akin to chat, video conferencing, cell VoIP, and different capabilities, all managed by way of the identical central console. All of this, plus a aggressive worth and superior capabilities round customized app growth and integration and artificial intelligence (AI) capabilities, implies that, for this iteration of our VoIP evaluation roundup, RingCentral Office simply holds onto its Editors’ Choice honor together with a lot bigger competitor AT&T Collaborate.

RingCentral Office begins at $19.99 per person per thirty days for the Essentials plan, its lowest tier. For small to midsize companies (SMBs), it gives the inspiration for a hosted Private Branch Exchange (PBX) system with quite a lot of high-end options. While its worth remains to be barely larger than a few of the competitors, it is turn out to be extra aggressive over the previous couple of years as options have been added, together with its Glip on-line collaboration software program in addition to manifold video conferencing choices

In truth, video conferencing has a number of choices now. In April 2020, RingCentral introduced an RingCentral Video an built-in video conferencing, display screen sharing, and messaging answer for groups. Currently, RingCentral Video is just out there as a part of RingCentral Office, just like Google Meet inside the Google G-Suite, although the corporate says it is going to launch it as a standalone app within the close to future. Those on the lookout for a standalone video conferencing answer can nonetheless buy RingCentral Meetings, an analogous however standalone conferencing and shared assembly app. New for 2020 is a freshened person interface that is cleaner and considerably extra intuitive. However, some helpful options are literally separate-cost add-ons to the bottom service, so do your math fastidiously earlier than buying.

Aside from the above software program choices, RingCentral presents top-tier providers and service-level agreements (SLAs) to make sure your cellphone providers are dependable. If you may have determined to buy the product, then take a look at our Quick Start: 7 Easy Steps to Configure RingCentral for Your Business information, which options quick, helpful educational movies that can take you from buy to being absolutely configured and calling in seven straightforward steps.  

A PBX within the Cloud

RingCentral Office consists of all PBX administration capabilities, cell app use on Google Android and Apple iOS, and limitless calling. It additionally consists of 1,000 toll-free minutes on the second tier, limitless convention calling, fax, enterprise SMS, and cell and desktop unified messaging apps with HD video conferencing. RingCentral Office additionally consists of Microsoft Office integration, name logging, and team collaboration together with video conferencing and Glip group messaging in a single app.

At $44.99 per person per thirty days (billed month-to-month) for the Premium plan, you add some probably important enterprise options akin to multi-level auto-attendant, inbound caller ID title, name recording, and a few identity management capabilities, notably: Single Sign-On (SSO) and Microsoft Active Directory (AD) or Google listing integration. You additionally get pleasure from a bump to 2,500 toll-free minutes. There are additionally choices out there to buy or lease preconfigured desk telephones to make use of with the service.

RingCentral is now providing limitless enterprise SMS and MMS and Microsoft Office integration. At the Premium stage, you additionally unlock 100 individuals for video conferencing.

RingCentral Connectivity

RingCentral Office capabilities as a hosted Session Initiation Protocol (SIP) supplier, which implies that you will want SIP telephones on-premises to make use of the service, except you solely want to use the softphone or cell apps, which some clients are prepared to do that days as witnessed by distributors who solely deal in VoIP software program, like Dialpad. Fortunately, RingCentral helps a variety of {hardware} desktop cellphone fashions from distributors akin to Cisco, Polycom, and Yealink, in addition to the choice to make use of a generic SIP machine. Some capabilities could not work correctly with generic gadgets, nevertheless, so utilizing an accredited SIP cellphone goes to be your greatest guess.

As with different hosted SIP providers, all voice calls will undergo your web circuit, which implies you will want dependable and strong service at your office for greatest name high quality. Slow or spotty connections can be problematic and even forestall the service from functioning. RingCentral will help in community configurations to implement Quality of Service (QoS) in your community infrastructure. There’s a brand new admin perform to observe QoS, however it’s vital to comprehend that the web does not perceive QoS settings, so some organizations might have a devoted community connection. RingCentral measures MOS (imply opinion scores) when community connections are set as much as measure name high quality. Alternatively, RingCentral can supply devoted circuits to its knowledge middle facility. Naturally, it will price greater than a regular web circuit, however it might be your solely choice to get acceptable name high quality relying in your native space community high quality or that of your Internet Service Provider (ISP). QoS, in spite of everything, is a greatest effort try, however as a result of community infrastructure on the web cannot be set to acknowledge it, congestion or poor line high quality can nonetheless have a destructive influence on name high quality. Something that units

RingCentral Office aside from some rivals, like 8×8 X Series (Visit Site at 8×8), is that it will probably combine with some present PBX methods or native cellphone providers. It does this by way of using an on-premises Analog Telephone Adapter (ATA) that connects to the general public switched phone community (PSTN) by way of native analog strains. One characteristic that RingCentral has is a CLEC (aggressive native change service), which implies that it will probably do issues like flip off spam calls. RingCentral says they’ve a CLEC in each main market.  

RingCentral Office Dialpad Interface

Configuration and Functionality

Setting up RingCentral Office is easy. The internet administration person interface (UI) permits for the creation and upkeep of person extensions, the configuration of auto attendant providers, firm info, and telephones and gadgets.

Nearly each side of the PBX configuration is dealt with by way of using procedural wizards. While this may be useful to some, it will probably get tedious when working with a major variety of entries which will have to be added or modified. Adding a brand new person, for instance, includes utilizing a five-step wizard. The wizard lets you choose a metropolis and state for the Direct Inward Dialing (DID) quantity, and what kind of cellphone you want to buy for that person (in the event you elected to incorporate a cellphone with the person setup). Each person good points the power to obtain e-faxes as a part of the deal, too.

You can add a number of customers in the identical space by way of the wizard however they are going to all get numbers in the identical metropolis and obtain the identical cellphone mannequin. Since RingCentral is predicated round one line per person, in the event you’re in a scenario the place you want many telephones/extensions however only some precise usable strains to attach with the PSTN, then you definately’ll have to pay for a DID for each extension, which can be cost-prohibitive. However you may also merely assign extensions with out exterior numbers, and permit callers to enter the extension by way of the corporate listing or by way of a operator.

Once created, these customers could be assigned to varied teams (akin to name queues to deal with inbound gross sales or assist calls), shared strains (akin to a gaggle of telephones scattered all through a warehouse), or voicemail-only extensions used when you’ll want to direct callers on to a voice mailbox.

The auto-attendant capabilities present the usual enterprise cellphone options you’d anticipate, together with elective multilevel capabilities that may step callers by way of a number of layers of menus to route them to the right extension or group. It’s easy to arrange name handlers to route callers to voicemail in the event that they’re calling after hours or by way of the menu if not. There can also be assist for a dial-by-name listing and automated or triggered name recording.

RingCentral Call Handling & Forwarding

More advanced name dealing with is feasible, however is comparatively difficult to navigate with the wizard-based configuration methodology. You can add situations that can change name routing if met, such because the referred to as quantity, caller ID, the time of day, or a mixture of those three.

RingCentral Office presents a Visual IVR editor, which is a graphical person interface (GUI) software to help in constructing your IVR tree. This shows a visible illustration of the decision routing and menu choices, and makes it straightforward to know how your routing works. It’s straightforward to make modifications to the tree from this UI as nicely.

RingCentral Office gives easy and detailed name logs and reporting capabilities. The dashboard reporting instruments supply strong, at-a-glance figures and graphs that present cellphone system exercise; additionally they allow you to drill down into particulars on the precise calls positioned, that are filtered by way of quite a lot of standards. There aren’t any intensive name middle options included within the Standard version, although RingCentral Office does have an elective, absolutely featured name middle product out there individually. The Premium version consists of Call Center Lite, which gives lots of the options discovered within the add-on product, together with real-time reporting.

Video Conferencing

RingCentral Video represents RingCentral Office’s video conferencing functionality, and it is meant to compete immediately with the favored Zoom Meetings video conferencing answer. Like Zoom Meetings, which has experienced unprecedented popularity as a result of do business from home practices through the coronavirus, RingCentral Video is designed for ease of use. RingCentral Video permits entry to video calls utilizing a easy hyperlink or assembly URL without having to put in any software program on participant’s PCs. Launched in April 2020, it’s at the moment out there to RingCentral Office subscribers in North America utilizing Google Chrome or Microsoft Edge browsers.

RingCentral used to promote Zoom’s video answer as a part of its collaboration suite. The firm determined to create its personal built-in video conferencing answer principally in response to person requests for improved safety, in addition to tighter integration with RingCentral Office options.


(Image courtesy of RingCentral)

Since it is not a standalone product, nor a consumer-facing video conferencing answer, RingCentral Video is extra just like Google Meet, which equally comes bundled with a bigger bucket of G-Suite options. Again, for these needing a standalone answer, RingCentral additionally presents RingCentral Meetings (which begins at $14.99 per person per thirty days for the Essentials plan) is service for companies and customers that simply need the videoconferencing performance with out the PBX integration.

We examined RingCentral Video a couple of months after it was launched, and as such, the product nonetheless had quite a lot of tough edges. For instance, we have been unable to entry it from a Mac working the Safari browser and as an alternative needed to set up Google Chrome simply to get it to run through the demo. RingCentral says that this can be resolved within the close to future, as will larger availability (it’s at the moment open solely to subscribers in North America). Another present limitation that RingCentral intends to handle is the restrict of 200 attendees to a single assembly.

Once RingCentral Office is ready up, beginning a RingCentral Video name is easy. There’s an possibility to hitch a name by way of audio, which permits customers to decide on their supply microphone and speaker (or headphone) output and take a look at these earlier than initiating a name. There’s an choice to dial-in utilizing a neighborhood cellphone quantity for as much as 50 international locations., leveraging RingCentral’s world PBX experience. Other notable options embody a chat perform for members to confer throughout video calls in addition to the power to annotate gadgets on display screen throughout displays or collaboration classes.

Overall, RingCentral Video manages to be a handy video conferencing part to RingCentral Office, regardless of its tough spots. However, we’ll be curious to see what modifications RingCentral makes when it releases Video as a standalone product.

AI Integration

In November 2018, RingCentral introduced that it could add AI capabilities into its platform. The firm is working with Gong.io, ThetaLake, and Velvetech to ship voice analytics after you are completed with a name. RingCentral instructed us that Velvetech will construct real-time transcription whereas incorporating machine studying from an AI startup referred to as Xsell. Anybody who must document can reap the benefits of the brand new AI integrations as soon as they’re out there.

The Xsell machine studying capabilities let insurance coverage brokers get prompted throughout a dialog in the event that they neglect to cowl a few of their speaking factors. Gong.io, which presents a dialog intelligence platform, will assist gross sales groups use machine studying to enhance their efficiency, and ThetaLake, a supplier of compliance merchandise for audio and communications, will allow audio archiving in line with regulatory necessities. The ThetaLake integration might assist gross sales brokers make sure that they’re complying with laws just like the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS). RingCentral can analyze audio and video to find out the danger elements for violating these laws. It may even monitor facial expressions in a video for compliance violations.

RingCentral Outbound Calls Page

Glip for Collaboration

RingCentral has built-in Glip into RingCentral Office to supply extra choices for collaboration. Additionally, RingCentral Meetings is now a part of Glip, which makes for a well-featured group collaboration platform. Teams are merely a set of customers, both RingCentral Office customers or exterior customers. Adding somebody not related to your RingCentral service is so simple as sending them an e-mail. Once related, you are able to do any variety of actions together with chat, video convention, make and document calls, and rather more, all from inside the Glip perform of the RingCentral app.

The addition of GLIP additionally consists of integration options which you’ll be able to join seamlessly into your setting. Out-of-the-box capabilities embody full syncing with calendars from Google and Microsoft Outlook, file syncing with Dropbox Business , Google Drive and Microsoft OneDrive for Business; observe syncing with Evernote, and rather more. GLIP exhibits your contacts and their availability or presence primarily based on exercise. It additionally offers you fast entry to your calendar, process checklist, and associated info.

RingCentral Office Overview

Overall, RingCentral Office gives a superb and full-featured hosted PBX answer. While it does not have the backing of an organization as massive as fellow Editors’ Choice winner AT&T Collaborate, its characteristic set is equivalently deep. Both firms can serve the wants of small enterprise clients simply in addition to enterprises.

RingCentral Office Specs

Call RecordingYes
Voicemail TranscriptionYes
Software PhoneYes
SIP Phone SupportYes
Toll-Free OptionYes
SMS MessagingYes
E911 ServiceYes
Video ConferencingYes
Voicemail to EmailYes

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