Gradwell Wave review: Capable cloud-hosted VoIP
A classy cloud VoIP service that’s swift to deploy, with great call-handling features at a price to please SMBs
SMBs that want uncomplicated cloud-hosted VoIP services may find Gradwell’s Wave ideal. It’s designed from the ground up to be easy to manage and use, but this simplicity doesn’t come at the cost of features, as Wave offers all the call-handling services a growing business could possibly need.
Gradwell has recently reduced the prices of all its plans. The entry-level Wave 100 option now costs £7.50 per user per month (down from £10) and supports 100 call minutes to landlines and mobiles.
Wave 1000 starts from £10.50 per month and increases call minutes to 1,000, while Wave 3000 costs from £15 and releases 3,000 call minutes. Unlike some competitors, all three packages deliver exactly the same set of features, so you don’t have to worry about any hidden costs.
Wave is hosted on Amazon Web Services (AWS) to provide extra reliability, and redundancy is covered by deploying it across two geographically diverse sites. An added bonus is that Wave can use AWS S3 buckets to retain call recordings, with the maximum seven-year retention period costing £15 per month for each user.
We found deployment a swift process. After discussing our needs with Gradwell, it supplied Yealink desk phones with MAC addresses pre-registered to our account. All we had to do was plug them into our internet-connected PoE switch.
The Wave admin portal provides easy access to all functions, with the core setup section making light work of user creation, phone assignment and provisioning. Each user receives a basic personal web portal, which they can use to block their outbound caller ID from being displayed, create a contact list and set up call diverting.
Wave has remote and home workers covered with free mobile apps for iOS and Android devices. Gradwell doesn’t currently offer desktop apps for Windows or macOS users, but they can make and receive calls just as easily using the browser-based Edge and Chrome softphones, which also provide on-demand call recording to local storage.
The apps and softphones offer integral videoconferencing services. When users want to make a call, they simply select the app’s camera icon. We found it easy to use: the browser softphone and iOS app interfaces provide a main view of the remote user’s camera inset with a live image from their own device.
Call-handling features are in abundance. For hunt groups, you assign an extension and add multiple steps that define who will be called and where the call should be routed to if it’s unanswered. The interactive voice response service provides a professional front to your business, while call queues ensure potential customers stay on the line by presenting features such as greeting messages, music on hold, advising the caller on their queue position and periodic announcements.
For an extra £2.50 per user per month, Wave can integrate with Microsoft Teams so that calls made from its user interface are routed through the Wave service. Reporting sees more improvements, with filtered graphs of inbound or outbound calls and user activity, call recordings are now MiFID2 compliant for the financial services sector, and administrators can listen in on users’ calls, whisper to them and barge in if required.
SMBs who are concerned about VoIP deployment can rest easy with Gradwell’s Wave: it has every angle covered. It delivers powerful cloud-based voice services that are simple to manage and offers a great range of call-handling features at a very competitive price.
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