In its heyday, faxing in the traditional sense was a state-of-the-art development. Being able to send documents and images over a standard phone line was a marvel of ingenuity. Many people fail to realize that this type of technology dates back to the mid-1800s. Back then, the Xerox company took technology that was developed nearly 20 years earlier, improved upon it, and made it more practical and affordable for everyday use.
Faxing is still a common practice. In fact, reports show there are currently more than 46 million traditional fax machines still in use across the globe. Having said that, the landlines on which fax machines rely are becoming fewer and farther between. With the advent of the internet and mobile phones, most people are abandoning landlines altogether.
What happens when businesses that don’t have landlines need to send a fax? Do they have to have a landline installed and purchase a bulky, costly fax machine? Would it be simpler and more cost-effective to visit a store that offers printing and faxing services every time they need to send a fax? Thanks to the latest advancements, those aren’t the only options. It’s now possible to send faxes without using century-old technology.
Today, online faxing is becoming increasingly common. It allows businesses and individuals to send faxes without needing a landline or a fax machine. Users can simply download documents or scan them into their computers and fax them in digital form. In turn, those online faxes can be received by either other online fax tools or traditional fax machines.
In a nutshell, online faxing is both safe and effective. It’s the preferred choice of many people these days with millions now benefiting from this newer, more efficient technology. It also offers a range of advantages over the now-outdated alternative.
Sending faxes online is inarguably simpler than taking the traditional route. In the old days, even getting a fax machine ready to work was an ordeal. You had to stock the machine with paper and feed the paper through in just the right way. From there, you had to run documents through the machine, dial the recipient’s fax number, and wait for the fax to go through. Hopefully, a confirmation page would arrive to let you know the fax reached its destination. If not, you were left wondering.
If the connection was interrupted or the machine jammed, that was another matter entirely. You had to start the process all over again. In the case of a paper jam, you had to wrestle out the offending page, pluck out any lingering scraps of paper, and reload the machine before starting again from scratch.
None of those hassles come into play with online faxing. Sending a fax is as simple as sending an email. It’s a much faster process as well. There’s no more waiting and hoping the document went through. Successful transmission is essentially a given, and it only takes a few seconds.
Online faxing is also more environmentally friendly than the traditional alternative. Records show that more than 17 billion documents are faxed each year. If all of them were sent via analog machines, the amount of paper going to waste and the number of trees being destroyed to support the habit would be astronomical.
Online faxing can greatly reduce paper waste. In truth, you don’t need paper at all to be able to send an online fax. From document creation to transmission and reception, the entire process can take place on your computer and over the internet. If recipients are also equipped with online faxing capabilities, they won’t have to use paper, either.
Traditional faxing may have been a cutting-edge development in its prime, but it was never the safest or most secure solution. Even in the 1970s and ‘80s, hackers were finding increasingly advanced ways to intercept important documents being sent over fax lines. They reached disturbing levels of success, too. With an ever-growing amount of sensitive data being sent and received these days, the dangers of insecure faxing are even more disconcerting.
Online faxing is far more secure. Wholly digital faxes are encrypted before, during, and after transmission. That’s not the case with conventional fax machines. Numerous regulations apply to sending and receiving potentially sensitive information at present. Those rules have been established to protect businesses as well as their clients, partners, patients, and other people whose information could fall prey to wrongdoers. Failure to comply with those regulations could be costly on several levels.
We’ve established that sending faxes no longer requires a landline and fax machine or multiple trips to a store that offers this type of service. We’ve also covered some of the reasons online faxing is the better alternative. Many businesses, though, are concerned about maintaining their professional image. They want to be able to give people the satisfaction of having a legitimate number to use when sending faxes or to look for when receiving them.
It’s certainly possible to get a dedicated fax number for online faxing. You can even choose a number that’s tailored to your location or one that’s toll-free. Businesses can also get separate fax numbers for remote employees or individual branches of their companies.
Fax machines helped to revolutionize the world of business communications. Original fax machines left a lot to be desired, though. In some instances, they caused more problems than they solved. Regardless, numerous businesses are still relying on outdated technology.
Today, online faxing is readily available. It offers all the benefits of traditional faxing combined with the advantages of digital communication. It’s a faster, simpler, greener, and more secure alternative to what was once the norm. Businesses that would like to take advantage of online faxing can even acquire fax numbers to help keep their professional image intact and provide their clients extra peace of mind.