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microsoft teams, WebRTC

Microsoft Teams Phone System and Direct Routing. DIY, Certified SBC or Turnkey solution?

Your organization is using Microsoft 365 for office productivity and Microsoft Teams for your video collaboration. Your phone system/PBX is hosted outside of Teams by a third party. In an effort to reduce the number of vendors and the cost in your network you have been charged with moving your phone system to Teams.

Note: We won’t be covering the Microsoft Calling Plans in this post as there is plenty of information out there on that offering.

Your options

  1. DIY, build a Direct Routing SBC from open source components:
    For some this is an interesting best option as it will be the least costly. Be forewarned, it requires good knowledge of the chosen open source project and is not for the faint of heart. This option also requires the most up-front work and ongoing support.
  2. Self-hosted with a certified Microsoft SBC vendor:
    This is a popular option for those who know 365 + Azure AD well and want a certified Microsoft SBC Direct Routing vendor where they can host and maintain the SBC servers along other their other network assets. It also offer the most flexibility as you will have complete control over the assets yourself.
  3. Select a complete solution, SBC as a Service + SIP Trunks:
    More for those who do not want the hassle of maintaining yet another system and are willing to pay a bit more for that peace of mind, this is a good option.

Option 1: DIY + SIP Trunks

We recently wrote a series on building a Microsoft Teams Direct Routing SBC from open source, so we won’t go into too much more detail on that here. Suffice it to say, you need to know your way around Linux and be comfortable with advanced Kamailio configuration in order for this to be a viable option.

Option 2: Certified SBC + SIP Trunks

This is by far the most popular option chosen by IT administrators when building out Direct Routing for Microsoft Teams. Most administrators are fine configuring + administrating their own SBC. There are several options to choose from:

  • Anynode SBC (TE-SYSTEMS)
  • Audiocodes
  • Cisco
  • Oracle (Acme Packet)
  • Ribbon (Sonus)
  • MetaSwitch
  • Thinktel

The full list is here.

Option 3: Turnkey Solution

Of all the options listed here, this is the most recent entrant for Direct Routing configuration. Very few SIP trunk providers provide or have enabled compatibility with Microsoft Teams, but that will surely change. Today there are a few Microsoft Teams SIP Providers that allow you to buy numbers from their carrier pool and associated those numbers with your 365 tenant users and use all the Phone Systems features available in Microsoft Teams.

Which SIP Trunks will work with Microsoft Teams?

For options DIY and Certified SBC, you will also need to find your own SIP Trunk supplier. A SIP Trunk, if you are not familiar, is just another way of saying, VoIP phone service for your phone system. It’s not difficult to find a supplier, in fact it can be a bit overwhelming as there are so many suppliers out there. A simple google search will yield an alarming number of choices. That said, not all SIP Trunk providers are built the same, some are better than others. Many have a free-trial so you can get a feel for the quality and capabilities before going whole hog. It may also be a good idea to join a few of the online forums and ask questions to a larger audience, the Microsoft Teams reddit community is also a good place to start.


Do you have questions? We are usually lurking in chat, found below, feel free to ask any questions you might have!

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