How Does Online Faxing or FoIP Work?

Want To See How Evolve Can Help Your Business?

Believe it or not, some businesses still send faxes. While not too common, cloud based phone system providers are still required to support faxing. Fax transmission is an analog technology. A modem uses an analog telephone line to send a scanned image, or a facsimile of an actual document, to another modem. The fax is then printed out for the intended user.

Cloud based service providers use VoIP to send and receive voice phone calls, but VoIP is not compatible with analog transmissions like faxing. There are two ways that hosted VoIP providers support traditional faxing:

Outbound Faxing

  • Fax to Email Conversion
    • This type of faxing does not require a traditional fax line or fax machine.
    • The sender of the fax creates an email and attaches the fax as a pdf file to the message.
    • The recipient email address will be the fax number of the receiving party at a domain that is a fax server.
    • The fax server then sends the pdf out to the recipient fax number and the pdf is printed out on the fax machine at the receiving end.
  • Analog Adapter
    • This type of faxing does not use a fax line, but it does use a traditional fax machine.
    • The sender scans the paper document into the traditional fax machine as normal.
    • There is an adapter connected to the fax machine that converts the fax from an analog signal to a VoIP signal.
    • The fax is received as normal at the receiving fax machine.

Inbound faxing

  • Fax to Email Conversion
    • Inbound fax is received as an attachment to an email to a designated fax email address.
    • The fax can be printed if needed.
  • Analog Adapter
    • Online fax is received by the analog adapter that’s connected to a traditional fax machine and the incoming fax is converted to an analog signal.
    • The fax is printed out on the fax machine.


Differences Between Fax and Online Fax



Cloud Based Fax

  • Fax machines are used from a single place in an office environment
  • Faxes can be sent from any device that can upload and email documents
  • A fax machine with a modem and image scanner is required to send and receive a fax. Printer, ink, and paper are needed to reproduce the fax
  • Faxes are received as a pdf attached to an email and can be archived or sent on to other users without having to print the document
Broadcast Fax
  • Can send one fax to many fax machines
  • Can send many faxes to many users’ desktops
  • A fax machine is very difficult to secure. Often incoming faxes will lie on a fax machine in an open office environment
  • A fax can be sent to specifically email addresses protecting it from being seen or taken by an unauthorized user
  • A fax is a printed document that is required to be archived has to be physically stored in a drawer or filing cabinet
  • A fax can be digitally stored in on a storage device either on premise or in the cloud


Why Use Online Fax?

  • Flexibility

If you still want to use your old fax machine in the cloud you can. But an online fax application frees you from having to use a single device to send and receive faxes. Wherever you’ve got internet connectivity and access to the documents you want to fax, you’re ready to fax.

  • Security

As mentioned earlier, traditional faxes are difficult to protect from unintended recipients as they may sit printed out and unattended for long periods of time. Online faxes are sent digitally to specific individual(s) ensuring a very high level of network security. They can also be stored in very secure online environments.

  • Cost Efficiency

Fax machines are devices that require maintenance and become obsolete over time requiring replacement. They also require ink and paper. Online fax requires no additional equipment or maintenance. Typically, one online fax license that can accommodate many users has a very inexpensive monthly fee.

Still curious about online faxing? Let us help!

You May Also Like…