For the last few years, there have been plenty of reports about the growing use of VoIP services around the world. Many small business leaders may not know exactly how prevalent the service has become, however, or what benefits it can potentially bring them.

Almost 40 percent increase in use
According to Crain's Detroit, nearly 79 percent of all businesses in America use VoIP phones in at least one of their locations, which rose sharply in just the past five years. In 2009, that figure was only at 42 percent.

With the rise in VoIP usage, there's a potential new trend that businesses may be able to take advantage of. Many locations, including Michigan, are considering introducing legislature to pave the way for phone companies to drop landline service by 2017. Instead, they'd be replaced with VoIP and similar services, with some backup plans in place for certain areas with poor Internet access.

The benefits of adoption back up this new trend, though. Some noted the technology's ability to even the market for small business competition, thanks to the low cost, easy mobility and ability to use only specific features if so desired.

Mobile VoIP growing
Midsize Insider adds that mobile VoIP is specifically on the rise in many business climates, reflecting new changes such as a shift to the smartphone. As a result, companies that want mobile VoIP simply need to adopt wireless Internet services in their business. They can either implement new software that provides mobile and computer apps for calls or refit existing programs for their own uses. For example, face-to-face video calls can happen on the Apple iOS app FaceTime, while Internet-enabled calls are easy with free apps like Viber.

The next step for both businesses and the VoIP market is to prepare for the next transformation of the technology. Updating or upgrading equipment so it's possible to run the next level of Internet-enabled phone calls will be a strong strategy for any small business, whether they are still on landlines or shifting their approaches entirely. The long-term benefits may include new mobility in the market, not to mention the potential for business improvement. 

Telecom industry piece brought to you by Marlin Equipment Finance, leaders in telecommunications equipment financing. Marlin is a nationwide provider of equipment financing solutions supporting equipment suppliers and manufacturers in the security, food services, healthcare, information technology, office technology and telecommunications sectors.