Microsoft Teams calling and PBX functionality – 3CX is the answer!
Despite the growth, for many companies it is still difficult to switch to full telephony on Teams platform, certainly due to the previous experience of traditional PBX with what we can consider the classic functions of a PBX. However, we have another valid option especially in those realities where a technological leap has already been made by implementing solutions such as 3CX.
Those who know this platform are well aware of the potential and flexibility that this product offers. Just in the month of August 2021 was finally released the version 18 of 3CX that, among the various new features, presents the integration with Teams, going to create that almost providential relationship.
The final version of 3CX V18 is here offering best in class audio quality, performance and reliability. With customer communication at the forefront, V18 provides an all-in-one integrated solution to communicate internally and connect with prospects.
Among the important new features of this version is a marked improvement of the WebClient that is now also available as a native Windows Desktop App, eliminating the need for a browser extension. This is feasible because it uses the same framework (Electron) used by Teams and WhatsApp that guarantees a better integration with the operating system and therefore a better reliability.
Another point of growth for management, but especially for security, is the introduction of Single Sign On (SSO) support. In fact, it is now possible to log into the webclient through one’s own Active Directory or Microsoft 365 credentials, SSO login being supported even in those hybrid environments with AD on Prem and AD Azure through the Azure AD Connect Service.
Integration with Teams offers a real alternative to Microsoft calling plans or to those regions where local phone providers are not yet fully integrated with SIP technology, through 3CX SIP proxy it is indeed possible to get a unified calling experience for 3CX users calling Teams users and vice versa, moreover it is obviously possible to make calls using the low cost rates offered by local providers, all this brings us to a cost optimization and a more powerful tool integrated with existing systems.
Let’s go back to the concept of SSO, I think that everyone has always wanted to be able to manage their access in a simple but at the same time secure way, the following video shows how to allow users to access the 3CX Web client using their Microsoft account:
This is a really interesting and very useful feature will ensure that users or suspected users who “accidentally” try to login in vain are automatically blacklisted by the system, also the security level of Strong Two-Factor Authentication (MFA), now essential in 365 environments is automatically extended to your 3CX account!
It’s certainly no secret that Microsoft Teams has seen exponential growth over the past couple of years. It has been and absolutely is a key tool that has allowed companies to weather this storm.
New business strategies have been adopted to meet the new demands, and because of this, it’s only natural that many administrators would look at the Teams phone system solution to see what benefits it could bring and what needs it covered.
However, to date, the system is not as feature-rich as many PBX systems and it also has the main disadvantage that if you want to make a call via PSTN, you need to buy very expensive calling plans directly from Microsoft or find a third party that offers a service called Direct Routing.
I don’t want to get into the technicalities of what Direct Routing is now, but this still doesn’t elevate the Teams phone system into a true PBX hosted in the cloud.
The solution of maintaining or deploying 3CX in the background or in parallel, offers all the features such as call queues, digital receptionists and reporting, etc., but connect it to the Microsoft 365 tenant and use Teams as a “softphone” or “front-end” client to create and receive calls, also relying on a competent and trained partner you can host the 3CX solution in virtual environments outside of our offices going to completely create an As a Service solution.
Head of Information Technology