PSTN Conferencing is an essential feature for businesses that require reliable and efficient communication solutions. Microsoft Teams offers PSTN Conferencing, allowing users to join meetings from anywhere using a phone line. This form of conferencing is easy to use and offers a range of features that enhance the overall conference experience.
Understanding PSTN is crucial for businesses looking to improve their communication capabilities and allows users to join meetings from anywhere using a traditional phone line.
Microsoft Teams offers a range of features that make PSTN Conferencing easy to use and efficient. This article will explore the basics and provide a step-by-step guide on how to get started with PSTN Conferencing.
- PSTN Conferencing in Microsoft Teams allows users to join meetings from anywhere using a traditional phone line.
- Microsoft Teams offers a range of features that make it easy to use and efficient.
- Getting started with PSTN Conferencing in Teams is simple and straightforward.
Understanding PSTN Conferencing
PSTN Conferencing is a feature in Microsoft Teams that allows users to join a meeting using a traditional phone line. PSTN stands for Public Switched Telephone Network, which is the global network of interconnected telephone networks that allows people to make phone calls to each other.
With PSTN Conferencing, users can join a Teams meeting from anywhere, even if they don’t have access to the internet or a computer. They simply dial a phone number and enter a conference ID to join the meeting.
This feature is ideal for users who are on the go or who work in areas with poor internet connectivity. It also allows users to join meetings using their preferred device, whether it’s a mobile phone, landline, or VoIP phone.
To use PSTN Conferencing in Microsoft Teams, users must have an Audio Conferencing license. This license allows them to host and join meetings using a phone line. The license is assigned by an administrator, who can also configure the settings.
Users can also enable dial-in conferencing for their meetings, which allows participants to join using a phone line. This feature is useful for participants who don’t have access to the internet or who prefer to join using a phone line.
PSTN Conferencing is a valuable feature in Microsoft Teams that allows users to join meetings using a traditional phone line. It’s ideal for users who are on the go or who work in areas with poor internet connectivity.
With an Audio Conferencing license, users can host and join meetings using a phone line, and administrators can configure the settings for PSTN Conferencing.
Microsoft Teams and PSTN Conferencing
Microsoft Teams is a powerful collaboration tool that allows teams to work together seamlessly. One of the key features of Microsoft Teams is PSTN Conferencing, which enables users to join meetings using a telephone line.
This feature is particularly useful for remote workers or those who are traveling and don’t have access to the internet.
To use this functionality in Microsoft Teams, users need to have an Audio Conferencing license. Once the license is assigned, users can schedule a Teams meeting and include a dial-in number and conference ID.
The dial-in number and conference ID can be obtained from the Audio Conferencing settings in the Teams Admin Center.
When a user joins a Teams meeting using a telephone line, they will be prompted to enter the conference ID followed by the pound (#) key. Once they have entered the correct conference ID, they will be connected to the meeting. Users can then participate in the meeting using their phone.
PSTN Conferencing in Microsoft Teams supports a wide range of dial-in numbers from different countries and regions. This means that users can join a Teams meeting from virtually anywhere in the world using a telephone line.
Getting Started with PSTN Conferencing in Teams
PSTN Conferencing in Microsoft Teams allows users to join a meeting from anywhere, even if they don’t have internet access. PSTN enables users to dial into a meeting using a phone number, and it also allows users to add a dial-in number to a Teams meeting.
How To Turn On PSTN Conferencing In Teams?
To turn on PSTN Conferencing in Teams, the organization needs to have a Phone System license. The user who wants to use PSTN Conferencing needs to have an Audio Conferencing license.
To turn on PSTN Conferencing, the user needs to go to the Teams admin center and select “Meetings” from the left-hand navigation. Then, they need to select “Audio conferencing” and turn on the toggle switch for “Dial-in conferencing.”
Once the user has turned on, they can add a dial-in number to a Teams meeting. To do this, they can schedule the Teams meeting from Outlook or Teams and make sure that its turned on for their account.
PSTN Conferencing Features in Microsoft Teams
PSTN Conferencing is a feature in Microsoft Teams that allows users to join a meeting using a traditional phone line. This feature is particularly useful for those who do not have access to a computer or internet connection. PSTN meetings in Microsoft Teams offer several features that make it a powerful tool for businesses.
Audio Conferencing is a feature of PSTN teamsmeetings that allows users to dial into a meeting using a phone line. This feature is particularly useful for those who are on the go or do not have access to a computer. With Audio Conferencing, users can join a meeting from anywhere in the world using a phone line.
The Teams client is the primary interface for Microsoft Teams users. It is where users can access all of the features of Teams, including PSTN. The Teams client allows users to join meetings, make calls, and access other features of Teams.
Call Queues is a feature in Microsoft Teams that allows users to route incoming calls to a group of people. This feature is particularly useful for businesses that receive a large volume of calls.
With Call Queues, incoming calls can be routed to the appropriate team member, ensuring that customers receive the help they need quickly and efficiently.
Auto Attendants is a feature in Microsoft Teams that allows businesses to create a virtual receptionist. This feature is particularly useful for businesses that receive a large volume of calls.
With Auto Attendants, incoming calls can be routed to the appropriate team member or department, ensuring that customers receive the help they need quickly and efficiently.
Dial-in Numbers and Calling Plans
Microsoft Teams provides users with the ability to join meetings using a phone, in addition to joining via the Teams app on their computer or mobile device. This is known as PSTN Conferencing, which stands for Public Switched Telephone Network Conferencing.
To use, users need a dial-in number. Dial-in numbers are phone numbers that participants can call to join a meeting. Microsoft Teams provides two types of dial-in numbers – Toll and Toll-free.
Toll dial-in numbers are regular phone numbers that incur charges for the caller. Toll-free dial-in numbers, on the other hand, are free for the caller to use. Microsoft Teams provides both domestic and international dial-in numbers, allowing users to join meetings from anywhere in the world.
To use Toll dial-in numbers, users need to have a Microsoft Calling Plan. Calling plans are available in select countries/regions and allow users to make and receive phone calls directly from Teams.
To set up a Calling Plan, users need to follow a few simple steps. First, they need to check if Calling Plans are available in their country/region.
Once confirmed, they need to buy and assign licenses, get phone numbers, add emergency addresses and locations for their organization, assign an emergency address and a phone number to a user, and finally, tell their users about their new phone numbers.
Overall, dial-in numbers and Calling Plans are essential components of conferencing in Microsoft Teams. By providing users with the ability to join meetings using a phone, Microsoft Teams ensures that everyone can participate in meetings, regardless of their location or access to a computer or mobile device.
Direct Routing and Operator Connect
Direct Routing and Operator Connect are two PSTN connectivity options that allow users to make and receive calls through the Public Switched Telephone Network (PSTN).
Direct Routing enables organizations to use their own PSTN carrier by connecting their Session Border Controllers (SBCs) to Teams Phone. With Direct Routing, users can use virtually any PSTN trunk with a Phone System. This option provides greater flexibility and control over the PSTN connectivity, allowing organizations to design a solution for a complex environment or manage a multi-step migration.
To configure Direct Routing, organizations need to follow four steps:
- Connect the SBC with the Phone System and validate the connection
- Enable users for Direct Routing, voice, and voicemail
- Configure call routing
- Translate numbers to an alternate format
Operator Connect is a PSTN connectivity option that enables organizations to connect directly to a certified operator network from within Teams. This option provides a simplified PSTN connectivity experience, as Microsoft manages the connectivity to the operator network.
To configure Operator Connect, organizations need to follow three steps:
- Enable an operator
- Set up phone numbers
- Manage your operators
Organizations can also release numbers and manage their operators through the Teams admin center.
Teams Phone and Emergency Calling
Microsoft Teams Phone provides various features, including emergency calls. Emergency calling is a critical feature that enables users to call emergency services in case of an emergency.
Teams Phone supports dynamic emergency calling for Microsoft Calling Plans, Operator Connect, Teams Phone Mobile, and Direct Routing.
To set up emergency calls, users must follow a few steps, including buying and assigning a Phone System license, choosing a PSTN connectivity option, getting and assigning phone numbers for users and services, and setting up emergency calling.
The emergency location is conveyed to the PSTN network when the Teams client makes an emergency call. The ability to do automatic routing to the appropriate Public Safety Answering Point (PSAP) varies depending on the country of usage of the Teams user.
Users should acknowledge and agree that they have read and understand the differences in Microsoft’s Emergency Services calling and provide this notice to each user with Calling Plans in Microsoft 365 or Office 365.
The differences in Microsoft’s Emergency Services calling capabilities include the fact that Skype for Business and Teams may not know the actual emergency location of the user when they make an emergency call.
Cost Considerations for PSTN Conferencing
When considering it is important to understand the associated costs. PSTN Conferencing allows users to join meetings using a traditional phone line, which can be useful for those who do not have access to the internet or are unable to use the Teams app.
To use PSTN Conferencing, users must have an Audio Conferencing license. This license can be purchased separately or as part of the Microsoft 365 Business Voice or E5 subscription.
The cost of the license varies depending on the subscription and the number of users.
PSTN Call Costs
In addition to licensing costs, there may be additional costs associated with PSTN Conferencing, such as PSTN call charges.
These charges vary depending on the location and duration of the call, as well as the type of phone line being used. It is important to check with your PSTN provider for their rates.
Microsoft offers Communications Credits to help cover the cost of PSTN calls made through Teams. Communications Credits are a pre-paid balance that can be used to pay for PSTN calls and other communication services.
The cost of Communications Credits varies depending on the number of credits purchased.
Overall, PSTN Conferencing can be a useful tool for those who need to join meetings using a traditional phone line. However, it is important to consider the associated costs, including licensing fees, PSTN call charges, and Communications Credits. By understanding these costs, users can make an informed decision about whether PSTN Conferencing is the right choice for their needs.
Quality and Control of Conference Calls
Microsoft Teams PSTN Conferencing provides high-quality audio and video conferencing for remote teams. The call quality is determined by various factors, including network bandwidth, device quality, and internet connectivity.
To ensure the best possible call quality, Microsoft Teams provides various tools to monitor and manage the call quality.
Teams administrators can use the Call Quality Dashboard to monitor call quality and troubleshoot issues. The dashboard provides a real-time view of call quality metrics, such as packet loss, jitter, and latency.
Administrators can use this information to identify and resolve issues that may affect the call quality.
In addition to monitoring call quality, Microsoft Teams also provides various call control features to help users manage their conference calls. Users can mute or unmute their audio, turn on or off their video, and share their screen during the call.
They can also add or remove participants from the call and control the call recording.
Microsoft Teams also provides outbound calling capabilities, allowing users to make calls to external phone numbers from within Teams.
Outbound calls can be made using the Teams client or a Microsoft-certified SIP phone. Teams administrators can configure outbound calling policies to control who can make outbound calls and which phone numbers they can call.
Overall, Microsoft Teams PSTN Conferencing provides a comprehensive set of tools for managing and controlling conference calls.
With real-time call quality monitoring, call control features and outbound calling capabilities, Teams users can ensure high-quality, productive conference calls with ease.
Administering PSTN Conferencing in Teams
Administering PSTN Conferencing in Teams requires a Teams admin center account and an IT admin with the necessary permissions. The IT admin can assign PSTN conferencing licenses to users and manage service numbers for conferencing bridges.
The following steps outline the process for administering PSTN Conferencing in Teams:
- Assign PSTN Conferencing licenses to users: The IT admin can assign PSTN Conferencing licenses to users in the Teams admin center. This license allows users to dial into a meeting using a phone number.
- Get service numbers for conferencing bridges: The IT admin can get service numbers for conferencing bridges from a telecom carrier. These service numbers are used to connect the PSTN to a Teams meeting.
- Assign a service number to the conferencing bridge: The IT admin can assign a service number to the conferencing bridge in the Teams admin center. This service number is used to connect the PSTN to a Teams meeting.
- Configure Session Border Controllers (SBCs): The IT admin can configure Session Border Controllers (SBCs) to connect the PSTN to Teams. SBCs are devices that sit at the edge of a network and help to secure and manage VoIP traffic.
- Test the PSTN Conferencing setup: The IT admin should test the PSTN Conferencing setup to ensure that it is working correctly. This can be done by scheduling a Teams meeting and dialing in using a phone number.
Administering PSTN Conferencing in Teams requires careful planning and configuration to ensure that it works correctly.
The IT admin should work closely with the telecom carrier to ensure that the service numbers and SBCs are configured correctly.
Once the PSTN Conferencing setup is working correctly, users can dial into Teams meetings using a phone number, making it easier for them to join meetings from anywhere.
Advanced Features and Options
Microsoft Teams PSTN Conferencing offers several advanced features and options that can enhance the conferencing experience. These features include private branch exchange (PBX) integration, location-based routing (LBR), and dial plans.
PBX integration allows organizations to connect their existing PBX system to the Teams Phone System. This integration enables users to make and receive calls through their PBX system while using Teams as their primary communication tool.
With PBX integration, users can leverage the advanced call routing and management capabilities of their PBX system while still enjoying the benefits of Teams.
Location-based routing (LBR) is another advanced feature that enables organizations to route calls based on the location of the caller. This feature is particularly useful for global operations that have multiple offices in different locations.
LBR ensures that calls are routed to the nearest available call center or agent, reducing call latency and improving call quality.
Dial plans are another advanced feature that enables organizations to customize the dialing experience for their users.
With dial plans, staff can define custom dialing rules that enable users to dial internal extensions, international numbers, or emergency services. Dial plans can also be used to block specific numbers or restrict dialing to specific regions or countries.
In addition to these features, Teams PSTN Conferencing also offers several options for PSTN connectivity. These options include calling plans, operator connect, and direct routing. Calling plans provide an all-in-the-cloud solution with Microsoft as the PSTN carrier.
Operator Connect enables existing carriers to manage PSTN calling and session border controllers (SBCs) through the Microsoft Operator Connect program. Direct routing enables organizations to connect their own SBCs to the Teams Phone System, providing greater control and flexibility over their PSTN connectivity.
Reporting and Record-keeping
Microsoft Teams provides several tools for reporting and record-keeping purposes related to PSTN Conferencing. These tools are useful for analyzing call patterns, identifying trends, and ensuring compliance with regulations.
Microsoft Teams keeps detailed records of all calls made through PSTN Conferencing. These records include information such as the date and time of the call, the duration of the call, the number of participants, and the endpoint used. Call records are stored in the cloud and can be accessed through the Teams admin center.
Teams also provide several reports to help administrators analyze usage and identify trends. For example, the PSTN usage report provides information on the number of calls made, the duration of calls, and the type of call. The report can be filtered by date range and endpoint.
Endpoint reporting is particularly useful for identifying issues related to call quality. Endpoint reports provide information on the devices and networks used by participants in a call. This information can help identify sources of poor call quality, such as outdated hardware or poor network connections.
UTC Time Zone
It’s important to note that all call records and reporting in Teams are based on UTC time zone. This means that administrators must convert call times to their local time zone to accurately analyze usage patterns.
Overall, Teams provides robust tools for reporting and record-keeping related to PSTN Conferencing. These tools are essential for ensuring compliance with regulations and identifying areas for improvement in call quality.
External and Internal Users
When using PSTN Conferencing in Microsoft Teams, it is important to understand the difference between external and internal users. Internal users are people who are part of the same organization and have the same email domain as the meeting organizer.
External users, on the other hand, are people who are not part of the same company and have different email domains.
Internal users can join a PSTN conference call using their Teams client or by dialing the conference number provided by the meeting organizer. They can also be assigned a dial-in number if they are not able to join the call using their Teams client.
External users can join a PSTN conference call by dialing the conference number provided by the meeting organizer. They can also be assigned a dial-in number if they are not able to join the call using their Teams client. However, in order to join the call, they must be verified by the meeting organizer.
Verification can be done in two ways. The first is by sending an invitation to the external user’s email address. The invitation will contain a link that the user can click to join the call. The second is by adding the external user to the meeting as a guest. This will allow the user to join the call using their Teams client.
If an external user is joining the call using their mobile number, they will need to enter the conference ID and the phone number provided by the meeting organizer.
They will then be prompted to enter the conference ID again before they can join the call.
The transition from Skype for Business
Microsoft officially retired Skype for Business on July 31, 2021, and is encouraging users to transition to Microsoft Teams. This transition will provide users with more advanced features and capabilities for online meetings and video conferencing.
To make the transition from Skype for Business to Microsoft Teams, users can follow the steps outlined in Microsoft’s FastTrack Resource Hub.
This resource provides users with email templates, flyer templates, poster templates, and more to help with communication and onboarding.
Users can also work with their customer success manager to develop a plan for transitioning to Microsoft Teams. This plan can include training sessions and support for users who may be unfamiliar with the new platform.
It’s important to note that Microsoft Teams offers more advanced features for online meetings and video conferencing than Skype for Business. For example, Teams allows users to schedule meetings directly from their PC or mobile device, and offers more options for customizing meeting settings.
Overall, the transition from Skype for Business to Microsoft Teams may seem daunting at first, but with the right support and resources, users can quickly adapt to the new platform and take advantage of its advanced features.
Frequently Asked Questions
PSTN Conferencing License – How Much Does It Cost?
To use PSTN conferencing in Microsoft Teams, you will need to have a Microsoft 365 or Office 365 Enterprise E5 license. Alternatively, you can purchase an add-on license for PSTN conferencing. The cost of the add-on license varies depending on your location and currency. You can check the pricing details on the Microsoft website.
How do I set up PSTN conferencing in Microsoft Teams?
To set up PSTN conferencing in Microsoft Teams, you need to have an audio conferencing license. Once you have the license, you can enable the feature in the Microsoft Teams Admin Center. From there, you can configure settings such as dial-in numbers, meeting policies, and more. For detailed instructions, you can refer to the Microsoft documentation.
How do I obtain a Teams PSTN conferencing license?
You can obtain a Teams PSTN conferencing license by purchasing a Microsoft 365 or Office 365 Enterprise E5 license, which includes the license. Alternatively, you can purchase an add-on license for PSTN conferencing. You can buy the license from the Microsoft website or through a Microsoft partner.
How can I add a call-in number to a Teams meeting?
To add a call-in number to a Teams meeting, you need to have an audio conferencing license. Once you have the license, you can configure dial-in numbers in the Microsoft Teams Admin Center. You can add toll and toll-free numbers for different countries and regions. When you schedule a Teams meeting, the call-in number will be included in the meeting invitation.
What is the process for starting a conference call in Microsoft Teams?
To start a conference call in Microsoft Teams, you can either create a new meeting or join an existing one. If you create a new meeting, you can invite participants and add a call-in number if you have an audio conferencing license. If you join an existing meeting, you can join the audio portion of the call by clicking the Join button in the meeting window.
How do I enable audio conferencing for Microsoft Teams?
To enable audio conferencing for Microsoft Teams, you need to have an audio conferencing license. Once you have the license, you can enable the feature in the Microsoft Teams Admin Center. From there, you can configure settings such as dial-in numbers, meeting policies, and more. For detailed instructions, you can refer to the Microsoft documentation.
Can I host conference calls with external users in Microsoft Teams?
Yes, you can host conference calls with external users in Microsoft Teams. You can invite external users to a Teams meeting by sharing a meeting link or adding them as a guest in your organization.
External users can join the meeting using the Teams app or by dialing into the call using a phone number if they have an audio conferencing license.