When choosing a phone plan, businesses need to assess their needs; consider phone service carriers; examine contracts, fees, coverage, roaming and voice plans; select a phone; and review email and collaboration services. In addition, businesses may want to look at extra devices and services.
To assess needs, businesses must know what kind of services they need to offer their internal and external clients. Staff who travel such as salesmen may require mobile phones. Desk-bound staff can sometimes make do with dumb phones, but if staff needs to use email, text, the Internet or apps, smartphones are required. Businesses also need to estimate the number of text and messaging minutes each smartphone holder may use per day and per month, and based on that, choose plans that cover those estimates or choose unlimited options.
Businesses can choose from large mobile service providers or regional carriers that link up with the larger providers to offer free roaming throughout the United States. Prepaid smartphone options also offer savings when the smartphone user does not require long-term smartphone use. Mobile service providers offer attractive discounts on hardware to lock customers in long-term contracts that typically run for two years. Usually, they charge activation fees as well as hefty early-termination penalties that businesses need to be aware of. Furthermore, there are also overuse charges for exceeding caps on data, text or messaging.
Businesses also need to check the quality of coverage provided by the various carriers. Among the choices of phones are Android devices, Windows phones and iPhones. Businesses may also consider group voice plans that pool everyone's minutes, as well as tethering access that allows notebooks and laptops to access Wi-Fi through smartphone subscriptions.