Online Faxing: Part of the Movement toward Cloud Computing
When one uses the expression ‘online faxing’, one is using a rather generic term that simply refers to any system which enables you to transmit faxes via the Internet. Within the bounds of this rather broad catch-all expression are at least three separate segments that have very differing functionality and scope.
The following is a brief summary of these various subdivisions of online fax:
Personal Online Fax Services
This is a term rarely used by service providers themselves, but does accurately describe the character of this specific category of Internet fax service. Two examples would be FaxZero and GotFreeFax. Both of these providers allow a user or business to send faxes periodically via web browser. In order to do this it is possible to type in your own text, or you can send a pre-existing .doc or .pdf file. This is really a service that will suit those who wish to send the odd page on an irregular basis.
Stand-Alone Online Fax Services
This particular type of service is designed to suit businesses who require a fax number, but don’t need a huge portfolio of communication options. Examples of this type of service are MyFax, eFax and RapidFax. Stand-Alone faxing enables you to have a local or toll-free fax number, to receive faxes in an email format, and some basic account management facilities. This sort of online fax service will suit most small businesses perfectly, or anyone who only requires a relatively small amount of fax capacity. Larger businesses that already have a functioning office PBX but need to replace their fax machine may also find value in such a service.
VoIP PBX with Fax
Voice over IP, more commonly known as VoIP, is a natural companion to online faxing. This sort of online service provides a lot more functionality than mere email faxing, it also provides a huge sutire of communication tools in one single package. RingCentral, Nextiva, and 8×8 are examples of this sort of service provider. If you are a mid-sized company, but growing by the year, and you require auto-attendant phones, mobile integration and fax, then it would be wise to consider this sort of VoIP and fax service provider. This genre of provider is often referred to as a Unified Communications provider, or sometimes Unified Messaging.
These three distinct groupings constitute the online fax market. It has to be said that the last sector is experiencing much of the contemporary activity. As the technology associated with Unified Communications becomes more advanced, more comprehensive capabilities at a cheaper price will increasingly become available.