Telephone Line Sharing
SHARING TELEPHONE LINES
Most telephone lines are under utilized making the effective cost for actual usage much higher than it appears. This is as true for the SOHO (Small Office Home Office) as it is for larger commercial organizations.
CPS manufactures a number of hardware products that are oriented toward allowing these dial phone lines to be shared for greater utilization. Sharing may include sharing a line between multiple users, using the same application (i.e., Internet access), or sharing the same line for different applications (i.e., voice and modem). In some cases the peripheral hardware itself may also be shared (i.e., modem sharing). Some of the more common requirements for sharing phone lines in today's world are:
- Internet Access
- Credit card scanners and other office equipment
- Remote Maintenance (also see Rebooting and Rebooting and Remote Access)
- Remote PC Access
- Dynamic Allocation of Dial Resources
- PBX Expansion
The Sharing Products are listed below along with the application for which they were primarily designed. Keep in mind they can also be used for other applications. These are listed as one liners under "Other Applications".
Be sure to also review the section on Combining Products. You won't believe how they can exponentially increase sharing and savings.
NOTE: To determine the Telephone Line Cost Savings related to these products, use the Cost Comparison Calculator.
THREE CALL WAITING PRODUCTS
To share voice lines with Modems
They ALERT the modem user that an inbound call has been detected
What are the differences between them?
- They all have the same auto adaptive high precision signal-processing engine that distinguishes the call waiting tone from the simultaneous overlapping modem signals. It recognizes the Call Waiting tone the FIRST TIME, EVERY TIME; no matter what state the modem is in.
This was the first on the market and is field proven with hundreds of installations operating with various central office telephone switches.
- They all provide a "beeping" alert and a flashing LED when a waiting call is detected.
- They primarily differ by their optional methods of taking the waiting call.
Why do you need a Call Waiting Product?
COMBINING THE PRODUCTS
The Telephone Line Sharing products can obviously be used separately, but the great thing about the CPS product line is that many of the products can also be combined to exponentially increase the telephone line utilization and savings. It is impossible to document all of the combinations, but the following are a few fundamental examples.
NOTE: This is also covered in an article "Optimizing SOHO Telephone Lines with Call Waiting" .
SINGLE LINE SHARING
In many SOHO applications it is typical to try to share a single phone line between three devices; a VOICE SET, a FAX, and a MODEM. In the past, a number of different vendors supplied boxes to perform this function. The boxes would recognize the inbound calling device and direct the call to the proper port (voice, fax, or modem).
In today's SOHO world however, there is not much requirement to receive inbound modem calls since the Internet is acting as the clearing house for information as well as e-mail (unless you are using one of the remote access packages). Accessing the Internet is an outbound dial application. Additionally, most fax machines now have jacks for a VOICE SET and an ANSWERING MACHINE and they handle the switching between the various connections as well as the FAX, of course. So the reason for the legacy types of sharing boxes has all but disappeared.
A more up to date alternative is to connect your PHONE and ANSWERING MACHINE through the FAX machine and connect your modem to a CPS Call Waiting Switch (diagram below). This accomplishes the same general sharing objective as the older boxes and at lower cost. More importantly, it provides the added advantage of never missing an important inbound customer call. And your customer will not get a busy signal or unanswered ring simply because you are on the Internet. This adds a new dimension to the sharing concept. Note Call Waiting service from your local phone company is also required.
ADDING A MODEM LINE SHARING SWITCH
MULTI- LINE APPLICATION (provides a maximum 6 month pay out)
Since Internet access is probably the single largest requirement for sharing telephone lines, the following diagram demonstrates how different CPS "sharing products" can be combined to provide the Ultimate in Telephone Line Sharing for Internet Access; or any other access for that matter.
This application eliminates the need to dedicate certain lines to Internet access. Instead, it allows you to use all of your lines for outbound access while never missing an inbound call.
Another great thing about this configuration is that your 56KB modems by-pass the current phone system that may present a 9600 or 19.2KB restriction.
Each of the products may be used individually or they may be combined with any other product in the diagram. If your application only requires one or more of the products or the number of lines at this time, simply hold your finger over those that may not be needed, while keeping in mind that they can be added as your requirements change. Combine any of the following products and watch your savings grow. They can all play together.