Sipgate Team review

Dave Mitchell

22 May, 2018

Deployment can be lengthy, but Sipgate Team offers inexpensive cloud-hosted IP PBX services with plenty of call features

From £14.95/month exc VAT

Small businesses that want a simple, low-cost cloud-based IP PBX will find Sipgate Team ticks plenty of boxes. The Light version starts at only £14.95 per month for three users and can be upgraded in small increments so you only pay for the features you need.

The Light version doesn’t cover calls to landlines and mobiles, which will be charged to your account as they are made – so if this is an issue consider the UK or EU call packages. The UK Call Pack bundle, for example, starts at £44.95 per month and includes all VoIP calls to UK landlines and mobiles regardless of their duration.

This latest version shows off a redesigned web portal which we found easy to use. We settled for the numbers already assigned to our account but could request local or international numbers and port over existing landlines with prices for the latter starting at £20.

To avoid unauthorized access, Sipgate posts a start code to the main account holder. We could configure our users and phones but had to wait two working days for this to arrive before we could activate our account.

Sipgate doesn’t have an import function so each user account must be created manually by entering their name and email address and assigning a phone number plus extension. On completion, they’ll receive an email with their personal web portal login details.

Hardware and software phones are also configured manually but plenty of help is at hand. We use Yealink T23G IP phones and the portal provided screenshots of their web interface showing clearly where the SIP account and proxy details are entered.

Sipgate doesn’t offer its own softphones but supports plenty of third-party products so we chose the popular Zoiper for testing. After downloading the preconfigured Windows version from Sipgate, we added the SIP ID and password as displayed in the user’s web portal.

The Zoiper iOS app is configured by tapping the QR icon at the top of its dialpad screen and scanning the code displayed in your account web page. It took a few more seconds to add our SIP credentials after which our iPad was successfully registered.

Businesses with remote offices will like the Sipgate Location feature. These link different geographical locations together within the same package, each with their own set of users, and all VoIP calls between them are free.

Place selected users in a group with a dedicated phone number and extension and when it’s called, all their phones will ring. Both groups and users can have custom greeting messages assigned but the Click2Record feature from previous versions is no longer provided so we had to record our messages separately as MP3 files and upload them as new announcements.

Group voicemail allows callers to leave a message while call forwarding and hunting rulesets redirect them to other users or phone numbers. These are quite versatile as multiple rulesets for both groups and users can apply a range of actions while schedules determine when they are active.

Call queuing and an IVR (interactive voice response) service are available in the Pro package which costs from £10 per month extra. The IVR service is basic when compared to RingCentral but does allow you to upload MP3 greeting messages that present callers with a choice of up to 10 extension numbers.

The lack of free softphones will increase per-user costs, but Sipgate’s low monthly charges and no minimum contract period can offset this extra expense. For small businesses looking to make the jump to cloud-hosted VoIP, Sipgate Team is a good choice that offers slick call handling features and easy management.