Are Desk Phones Still Relevant in Today’s Communication Ecosystem?

2 min read

Lisa Campbell

Lisa Campbell | March 25, 2024

The ecosystem of tools we use to communicate and collaborate is fundamental to how we connect. In today’s communication environment, we have soft clients for chat, video and audio conferencing, screen sharing, and devices like mobile phones, desk phones, and watches; we can even talk through home security cameras. With continuous innovation at our heels, we now have more options to help us accomplish more meaningful and purposeful interactions than ever before.

As the collaboration technology landscape evolves into niche areas like vertically specific Internet of Things (IoT) integrations, more differentiating communication capabilities are being introduced into the ecosystem. So, the question about the role of the traditional desk phone in this new environment is inevitable – does it still deliver value?

A Shift in the Desk Phone Mix

The maturity and increased frequency of communication tools like soft clients and mobile devices in the workplace have come with a cost. The more adoption, the more their limitations became exposed, diluting the idea that the desk phone could be replaced. Many organizations have recognized the compromises and risks of low voice quality, reduced reliability, and security threats, making a complete switch unadvisable.

These factors – the need for “always available” voice communication – and ongoing innovations, such as cloud communication infrastructure support, spotlight the desk phone advantages in numerous use cases. We know this to be the case as we see growth in the composition of desk phone purchases toward entry-level devices. Customers need them as a more targeted, cost-effective voice communication option.

Need a High-Quality Desk Phone Headset? Mitel Has You Covered > 

Companions in the Communication Ecosystem

The desk phone's primary value propositions – resilient, quality voice – reinforce its position in the communication tools landscape. Whether helping to improve concentration levels during business calls or facilitating connectivity in fluid office environments through hoteling or hot-desking, the desk phone serves as a valuable companion to soft clients and mobile devices, highlighting that in a time of technological disruption, it's essential to compare the gives and takes of innovation.

It’s about use cases and appropriate endpoints for different needs. Consider these questions if you are wavering between the traditional desk phone versus softphone or other soft communication clients:

  • Do you want to risk safety with a questionable connection?
  • Can you risk having an uncharged mobile phone?
  • Do you require secure or private lines of communication?
  • Will audio quality changes affect employee or customer experience needs?
  • In emergency communication, is your business phone system resilient?

If these factors are important, the desk phone is the answer.

The Future of the Desk Phone

As the endpoint mix changes to serve more specific use cases, the desk phone’s role has fascinating potential, especially in expanding capabilities where their use is necessary. There are meaningful influences that could make their role even more critical through IoT integrations and established connectivity to key systems. Recognizing the preciousness of desktop real estate, it's primed to have added utility even outside the person-to-person communication space. Think about how it could share office utilization data, temperature or airflow information, and security checkpoints. With faster production capabilities, the turnaround to support such use cases is just around the corner. Their evolution will be fascinating to watch.

While the allure of new technologies may be enticing, let's not overlook the enduring capabilities of the desk phone as part of your organization’s greater business phone system. As it adapts and evolves, the desk phone continues to help foster connections and drive organizational outcomes.

Check out the Mitel IP Phone System: 6900 IP Phone Series >

Lisa Campbell

Lisa CampbellCorporate Communications and Solutions Marketing Expert

Lisa has worked in the UC industry for nearly 15 years. She has held several marketing and communications roles, including positioning, messaging, portfolio vision and strategy, solution marketing, thought leadership, and executive communications. Lisa is passionate about the power and variety of communication options and our opportunity to challenge their boundaries and assumptions to discover better ways to connect. She’s also an active photographer, gamer, and hobby farmer. Lisa’s expertise in MarCom is demonstrated through nearly 25 years of working with industry-leading brands such as Siemens Enterprise Communication, Unify, Volkswagen, Audi, Porsche, and Atos.

Ready to talk to sales? Contact us.