Fax Goes Digital, Too
November 01, 2013
By Mae Kowalke
, TMCnet Contributor
Telephones aren’t the only office machines that have grown up.
The market penetration of voice-over-IP (VoIP) technology has gotten to the point where telephone companies are leveraging the technology behind the scenes, and businesses are switching to VoIP by the thousands.
But voice technology is not the only office technology that has evolved. So has the fax. Just as voice has moved to VoIP, fax has moved to fax-over-IP (FoIP).
FoIP preserves the business processes that require fax technology, and it enables businesses to continue to support partners that leverage fax technology. But FoIP takes the fax and brings it into the digital age.
There are many benefits that come from migrating to FoIP.
One benefit is security; unlike traditional faxes, FoIP leverages HTTPS encryption. This means that the same encryption used for credit card orders and bank logins is used for faxing.
A second benefit is efficiency. When faxes become digital, they can be automatically routed to the appropriate person in the office. No more waiting for an incoming fax, no more possibility of losing the fax among other documents, no more faxes ending up in the wrong hands.
Faxes can be searched when they arrive by FoIP, too, as optical character recognition can translate faxes into searchable documents that can be discovered as easily as Microsoft (News - Alert) Word files.
There’s familiarity. Many office workers live and die by email, and with FoIP there’s the integration of email with fax because faxes can come in by email. This helps employees keep all their documents in one place, and it makes it easier for them to work with fax documents.
Mobility also is a benefit of FoIP. With FoIP and the sending of faxes to email, there’s no missing link for mobile office workers. Just as they can check their correspondence and make calls from the road, so too can they see any faxes that come their way; heading back to the office for a fax is a thing of the past.
There are both dedicated FoIP solutions and options for those who would rather not replace their current fax hardware.
One solution for those who would like to upgrade their current hardware is AudioCodes (News - Alert) HTTPS Fax ATA. It is an enhanced version of the MP-20X series of Analog Telephone Adapters (ATA) which connects fax machines with analog lines and Multi-function Printers (MFPs) to cloud-based fax solutions and premise-based Fax Servers using HTTPS. Using such a solution, businesses can migrate to FoIP without a complete technology overhaul.
Just as calling has grown up, so too has the fax.