VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol), also known as IP telephony, is simply a technique and industry of technology for the transfer of voice communication over broadband internet connections, including the Internet itself. It was developed by Cisco to enable secure connectivity between private branch exchange (PBX) systems and other IP enabled devices. In other words, VoIP is a telephony service that allows users to make telephone calls over the internet. It is usually implemented as an application on top of a traditional computer network but can be stand alone. Most people will be familiar with traditional telephone service (PSTN), which is offered by cable companies and other public-switched telephone networks.
In contrast to its more well-known counterpart, VoIP has many advantages over PSTN and other traditional landline communications. These include low cost per minute, unlimited calling plan, free Voice over Internet Protocol phone service, a number of choices in connection speed and technology, portability, and mobility. But it does have some disadvantages as well. VoIP can only be utilized while the network is turned on, making it difficult to use on mobile devices.
For those who have used analog phones for long enough, they are already accustomed to high call rates despite free VoIP calling plans. This is because the cost of analog phones is determined by the distance traveled each time the call is made. Because of this, long-distance calls are exceptionally expensive using analog phones. VoIP is not free, but it does offer a free VoIP phone service to those who sign up and use the service. In most cases, a person will be able to enjoy the same benefits as he would with an analog phone if he were using the internet for his voice and data applications.
Many providers offer VoIP packages based on usage.
The basic package offers a small telephone that connects to the internet for free. Other packages go up to more advanced capabilities and allow unlimited numbers of calls and faxes, among other features. In order to take advantage of all the options that VoIP has to offer, one would need to subscribe to a long-distance calling plan. A subscriber should consider whether he needs those added features or just the basic ones for his daily communication needs. While many people use VoIP primarily for conference calls and sending mail to family members abroad, some people also find VoIP useful for making cheap long distance calls to home or loved ones.
Another way to make use of VoIP is through the VoIP server.
This server allows an individual to receive phone calls from anywhere in the world, irrespective of where they are located. The advantage of this service is that a user does not have to purchase a separate telephone handset for making international calls. Instead, all that one needs is an internet protocol computer connected to the internet for receiving phone calls.
Most VoIP providers allow their subscribers to download software to conduct voice and video conferencing with each other. Through this software, users can exchange text as well as audio messages in real time. Video conferencing is especially helpful when two or more users need to meet in different locations and are using different devices to carry out this task. In addition, a VoIP phone service lets a business contact its customers by means of video and web conferencing.
- Lastly, VoIP lets a user make and receive phone calls even without an internet connection.
- This is especially useful for travelers who may need to make international phone calls periodically.
- VoIP phones work well even when a person is traveling to countries that do not have internet connections or when the internet connection is slow.
There are a lot of phone system features that you can take advantage of, depending on your VoIP provider and your needs. If you’re still in the process of choosing the right VoIP provider for you, then consider asking questions so that you will be able to fully understand any services or plans that you will be receiving from your VoIP provider. You’ll also be able to tell if the VoIP provider is really reliable and trustworthy, which is very important because you don’t want to entrust your voice and data traffic to just anyone.