Softphones vs Handsets: Which is Best for Business Communication?

The telephony landscape is changing, with analogue services being switched off by BT soon (check here for more details). While in the home, landlines have long been taking a regression in the number of people requiring that service, in business landlines have been as crucial as ever. One of the critical reasons for this is due to how people perceive businesses that operate from a mobile number. They are often deemed unprofessional, or perhaps sole traders. The consensus is that no large, stable business operates from a mobile number. But in this transformation, comes innovation with new products that take your business communication up a level.

There are two products that Greenlight Telecoms offers. Softphones and handsets. Let’s discuss each.

What are softphones?

Softphones are software-based phones. To the uninitiated, people think softphones are some velvet phones – but that’s not the case! Softphones mean an app can be installed across various devices, like Windows, Mac, iPhone, and Android. The calls funnel through the app, and all devices connected to that number can receive and make calls.

Pros and cons of softphones


  • Calls can be taken from any device, allowing for greater mobility
  • Increased functionality as everything is software-based, voicemails and call recording come easy
  • Environmentally green, no production of physical handsets
  • Lower cost, cheaper than a traditional lined phone
  • Customised app interface, including integration into other technologies


  • Highly dependent on internet connectivity

Pros and cons of handsets


  • Easy communication, traditional handset pickup
  • Working from a single point of access can be beneficial, in a leisure environment for example


  • Social challenges – can often interrupt face-to-face communication with your clients as they are so intrusive when it rings
  • Can be expensive when buying, especially when you need more than a couple
  • Physical risks – can be stolen, damaged, can lead to physical discomfort

Handsets use-case: Brio Leisure

Brio Leisure offers affordable gym memberships and leisure facilities to local communities in the Cheshire area. What they needed, was an upgrade of a system that was expensive and did not meet the organisation’s needs.

They wished for a handset set-up but reprovisioning of old Yealink handsets for Cisco models over time. The handset solution was perfect for the face-to-face support they offer to their members, while also adding the advanced functionality of better hunt groups, IVR menus and overspills.

The handset benefits were perfect for Brio Leisure when combined with a VoIP solution. The phase 2 of their project, will be to eventually move them to a softphone-based solution allowing calls to be taken from any device.

Softphones use-case: Leep Utilities

Leep Utilities came to us wanting a VoIP telephony system that could maintain a 100% uptime. Greenlight Telecoms deployed a VoIP solution in partnership with our supplier, Marston’s Telecom to deliver a softphone-based solution for this utility network-centric company. Deploying the softphone solution across the country in Media City, Liverpool and Canary Wharf, Leep Utilities now have a new VoIP telephone system that brings the benefits of flexible working with softphones.

To read more about our case study for Leep Utilities, click here.