Aastra Vs Cisco – Which is The best VoIP Solution For You?

An all in one communications solution frees you to focus on your core business, since you won’t have to chase many service providers all over town. But, who will fit your bill thus become THE brand for you!

AastraMX-One was a SIP-based communication system that offered voice communication and a variety of applications. In 2014 Aastra merged with Mitel as a result of which some of its products were discontinued, others were renamed or replaced. In our Aastra Vs Cisco discussion therefore, we will use Aastra and Mitel interchangeably.

Mitel and Cisco are amongst the most popular phone systems in the market today. In fact, they are almost the default unified communication solutions. Unified Communications (UC) denotes a phone system unifying/integrating numerous methods of communication within a business, including but not limited to phone, email, fax, SMS, video conferencing, instant messaging, etc. How does each brand perform in relation to the other?

What are their differences between Aastra Vs Cisco?

Aastra/Mitel
Cisco
Year Founded
1983
1984
Target market
Small/Medium  Enterprises
Large enterprises
Product Categories
Unified Communication Solutions, VoIP
Networking equipment, VoIP
Notable Mergers/Acquisitions
Mitel
Linksys, Scientific Atlanta
Major Products
VoIP
VoIP
Phone features
Basic features plus Built-in Voicemail, CRM integration, Micloud connect, teleworking and mobility, call center
Basic features plus Unified Call Manager – video calls, instant messaging,
Affordability
More cost-effective
Some products low priced
Support
More Intuitive programming
More Technical support

Aastra Vs Cisco – How Do They Compare?

Mitel offers complete collaboration, communications and contact center service in some of its devices, backed by google cloud’s security, reliability and scalability. It therefore remains a go-to solution for many small and medium businesses. Cisco develops, manufactures and sells telecommunications equipment, networking software and hardware, and other high technology products and services, particularly geared to large businesses. It is now trying to reach out to small businesses. How else do these IT giants compare?

Phone Features

Phones from both companies have basic phone features like call transfer, call waiting or forwarding. Mitel however extends the basic phone feature offering with features like message status indicator, pause button, timed reminder and call forwarding override – which can temporarily disable the forwarding of calls. These intricate features are absent in Cisco phones.

For more specific features, Cisco comes with the Unified Call Manager which greatly expands the phones functions. For example, it enables video and instant messaging set-up. These features better suit large organizations. Mitel reaches out more to smaller enterprises by adopting special features like built-in voicemail – a feature that has to be separately purchased with Cisco. In addition, Mitel has other advancedfeatures in various models. Such features include the CRM integration, Micloudconnect, call center, teleworking and mobility.

Affordability

The cost of VoIP phones is determined by the services offered by the system. As already observed, Mitel has a battery of features that end up reducing overall associated costs e.g. an inbuilt voicemail system as opposed to buying it separately. This makes Mitel more cost-effective irrespective of the business size. Although Cisco has lowly priced unified call manager systems for small businesses, the features are quite basic, making Mitel more competitively priced.

Scalability

For any growing business, systems that can easily scale up to match the growth are very important. Because they are soft-ware based, VoIP systems are not only easier to scale up, but last longer than traditional phones. Mitel’s 5000 (Mivoice) business range, for example, scales up to 250 IP phones/99 sites compared to Cisco UC’s 138 phones/5 sites (comparable to Mitel’s 3300-  Mivoice). But then again, Mitel phones handle 24 keys at a go compared to Cisco’s 8.

Support

Cisco is a well-established brand targeting large businesses. It therefore has in place comprehensive user support that includes training on how to use VoIP’s advanced features. Mitel on the other hand focusses more on user’s intuitive programming without much emphasis on imparting skills on handling of advanced features. Yes, Mitel has a customer support in place, it just doesn’t offer courses.

Aastra Vs Cisco – A Comparison Overview

Aastra/Mitel Overview

Aastra Technologies was originally founded in 1983 and had its headquarters in Ontario Canada. Its products consisted ofthe full range of VoIP solutions including telephone terminals, gateways, communication servers and advanced software applications for both residential and business clients. In November 2013, Mitel Networks Corporation acquired Aastra Technology. As a result, Aastra’s products were either discontinued, renamed or replaced. Mitel offers a range of VoIP phones, conference phones, consoles and peripherals. VoIP phones include:

  • Micloud/Mivoice Solutions deskphones (6900s, 5300s, 400s)
  • Mivoice Solutions SIP phones (6800s)
  • Digital phones (8500s, 4200s)
  • DECT wireless Solutions

The Mivoice 6940 IP Phone

Mitel MiVoice 6940 IP Phone (50006770) w/Wireless Handset
  • EASY READING AND INTERACTION
  • FROM THE CAR TO THE OFFICE AND BACK AGAIN

This phone seamlessly integrates with the user’s mobile phone contact and audio call information. This enables the user to answer calls to the mobile device from the IP phone, taking advantage of the IP phone’s superior voice performance and ergonomics.  The 6940’s 7” LCD touchscreen enables easy interaction and reading, while the enhanced, full duplex speakerphones enables the user to talk and walk around the office, multi-tasking even with multiple callers. The phone’s inbuilt Bluetooth offers clearer sound and greater range, through the optimized cordless headset. The phone also has 96 (16X6) programmable keys, 6 soft keys, Mitel Hi-Q audio technology and other amazing features.  It works well with Micloud, Mivoice 3300 controllers, Mivoice office 250, etc.

View Price on Amazon

Mivoice Conference Phone

This easy to use conference phone has 16 built in microphones, superior audio quality and platform to share ideas and files. Some notable features include:

  • 7” high resolution multi-touch color display to give users vivid presentation and conference functions
  • Interoperable one-touch Micollab conference sessions access
  • In-built HMDI port that connects LCD display or projector
  • 22kHz wideband audio
  • Gigabit port with PoE
  • Built-in keyboard function supporting QWERTY or AZERTY
  • USB and Micro SD card slot
  • Support for wireless mouse and keyboard

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Cisco Overview

Cisco Systems is a world leader in internet networking. In its service, Cisco aspires to accelerate digital transformation, manage compliance and costs, and connect teams and technologies. It provides business solutions for everything ranging from data center and networking to collaboration and security. Its VoIP telephony offers superior voice and video communications combined with mobile phone integration. Its user friendly IP phones use

VoIP Desk Phone: Cisco CP–8861

Cisco IP phones offer great value to business with their innovative AI powered Spark Assistant. The Cisco CP-8861 is designed with 5 lines, Bluetooth integration, Wi-Fi support and a fast charging USB port. It has a gigabit internet switch with echo cancelation and wideband audio for voice clarity.

The phone is user-friendly, has a high-resolution color display and cutting edge features like the intelligent proximity for mobile voice – a suite of features activated when mobile devices are brought close by.

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Conference Phone: Cisco IP Conference Phone 7832

Cisco IP Conference Phone 7832 with Multiplatform Firmware, 360-Degree Microphone Coverage, 3.4-inch Monochrome LCD, Class 2 PoE, Supports 1 Line, 1-Year Limited Hardware Warranty (CP-7832-3PCC-K9=)
  • AUDIOPHILE SOUND: Office conference phone built with a unique acoustic architecture that accurately...
  • FULL COVERAGE: Four microphones with 360-degree coverage allow users to speak in a normal voice and be...

This easy-to-use, reliable phone is ideal for private office desktops and small conference rooms. Supporting full duplex communication and wideband audio, the 7832 delivers crystal clear, high quality audio conferencing for a business.

The phone is raised for easy handling and positioning, covers spaces of up to 16 sq meters with microphone pick up of about 2 meters.  The monochrome, pixel display is backlit and has antiglare bezel that makes interaction and viewing easy.

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Let’s now compare the 2 popular Mitel and Cisco VoIP phones

Mivoice 6940 IP Phone
Cisco CP–8861
Display
7” Multicolored touchscreen
5” High resolution color display
Line Keys
16
5
Audio
Mitel Hi-Q Audio Technology
Wideband Audio and Echo cancelation
Other Audio enhancing features
Hearing Aid Compatible headset (HAC), Codecs
NoiseBlock Artificial Intelligent
Gigabit Ethernet Ports
2
1
USB ports
1 – 500 mA
1
Bluetooth integration
Yes, Bluetooth 4.1 improves sound and range, facilitates integration with mobile devices.
Yes, together with Cisco intelligent proximity facilitates integration with mobile devices.
Other features
PoE Class 3, Sidecar Expansion port
Wi-Fi Support

Conclusion

Both of these titans of telecoms deliver respected complex communications services and hardware packages. The best brandfor you will therefore be determined by your company needs.Cisco is a prestigious brand with wide experience in catering to the wider IT needs of large businesses, though it is also venturing into the small business market. It accommodates user integration through customer support and training courses.

If you want IT support wider than just physical phones, or if your company already has some Cisco infrastructure, then it is the brand for you, especially for conferencing telephony.Aastra/Mitel focuses on provision of value added VoIP solutions to small and medium enterprises. Though it relies on intuitive programming as opposed to training, its products are highly specialized. If your office supports more desk top phone communication then Aastra is the better brand, because of their added value like sidecar expansion.

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