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VoIP stands for Voice-over-Internet Protocol. It is an alternative solution for calling someone using a traditional analog phone service. Instead, it works by converting the voice into digital signals which are then passed on through the internet’s high speed network. Simply put, you don’t use traditional land-lines but instead utilize the infrastructure of the internet. Additionally, you aren’t locked into using an actual phone (unless you desire) as you can easily utilize most PCs to communicate. VoIP is quite simple a miracle of the modern age, allowing near instant communication with anyone worldwide.

VoIP first became popular as a way to negate (or reduce) the cost of making a long-distance call, although in most cases, it is a peer-to-peer way of connecting to other VoIP users with similar equipment. This is a new technology that is changing the way consumers talk on the telephone. When you speak with friends and family who are also using VoIP, the call is essentially free (normal internet usage fees will apply) and you can easily use your PCs on-board microphone, or hook in a headset for privacy if desired.

Requirements:

In order for VoIP to actually work, you will need a high speed internet digital service. You will also need a computer, a router, high speed internet and a VoIP enabled telephone. Nowadays, some mobile phone providers are giving their customers custom routers that allow them to utilize VoIP services at home. They are also adding VoIP technology in mobile phones to make it very easy and seamless for the less technologically-inclined customers.

Benefits:

The benefits of VoIP is that it offers consumers a lower cost than traditional local and long distance services. These services traditionally cost a ton of money. Also, VoIP is a lot more efficient than the other forms of communication via the telephone. Not only is it more efficient for the consumer but also for the provider as they will not have to deal with congested networks. Also, special features that traditionally cost consumers an arm and a leg, such as voice mail, conversation recording, caller ID, call forwarding and call waiting are highly integrated with VoIP solutions already. This means that you do not have to pay the outrageous fees for getting more out of your telephone service.

Cons:

There are a few cons to VoIP as a telephone solution for consumers. For one, you are required to have a bunch of hardware that traditional analog doesn’t require you to have. This can be a high barrier to entry for consumers. The good news is that some providers are actually moving their customers towards utilizing VoIP as a technology solution by giving their customers access to advanced and VoIP enabled routers. Because of this, the barrier to entry is lower for these customers. However, it still must be noted as a con because some people/consumers do not have access to this yet and will have to purchase their own equipment.

VOIP. Wordcloud Concept.Another con is that VoIP requires somewhat fast internet which can be costly for consumers depending where they live. This might not even be an option for a lot of consumers if they do not have an Internet provider with fast enough speeds near them.

All in all, VoIP phone services are gaining steam. Consumers are demanding more features and faster Internet more than ever. Because of this, we can expect VoIP services to become more mainstream and accepted by telecom providers, as well as Internet providers. We hope this article has provide the answer and explained, exactly what is VoIP.


blue mouse and the word VOIP

VoIP Definition

VoIP as we stated above is an acronym for Voice over Internet Protocol. VoIP is a digital means of making voice calls using the internet. While many still use VoIP to make telephone calls, there is no actual need for a telephone since many calls today may be made via a laptop, tablet or other digital media. Sometimes even a free smartphone app with suffice.

There are many benefits of using VoIP instead of a traditional hardline or wireless telephone system. The primary benefit is that VoIP is much less expensive, allowing users to makes calls all over the world, most of the time for free. The only equipment needed to make VoIP calls is a computer, speakers and a microphone, along with a fast and stable internet connection. VoIP calls can also be made using a smart phone or home phone.

VoIP includes all types of internet calls which may be placed in a variety of ways. The manner of the call depends upon how and where the calls will be made. Calls can be made at work, at home, through the corporate network and even on travel while at the beach. Only an Internet connection and computer is needed or a smartphone and data connection in some cases.

The way a call is placed will vary with the VoIP services being used. As mentioned earlier, VoIP is often extremely cheap or in some cases free. One of the primary features of VoIP is that is uses already existing infrastructure without adding any additional costs. Sounds are transmitted over standard internet lines using IP protocol. Since the calls are made over lines and service that already exists, there is no additional charge for making the calls. The service is so popular that many VoIP services specializing in making calls via computer have formed in recent years.

Most VoIP calls are made via computer using a VoIP service provider. The computer’s audio systems are used for talking and listening. Other VoIP features include video calls where both users can see the other via their computer’s webcam.

Some VoIP service providers support VoIP calls using standard phones. These must use special adapters which connect the phone to a home computer or internet line.

Even though VoIP is free in most situations, there may be a cost when it comes to completely replacing landline phone systems with a VoIP Telephone System. Even then, the price is much less than traditional phone service. This is especially true with international calls. VoIP can reduce international calling fees by as much as 90 percent.

Although VoIP is relatively new technology, there are still good tips for getting started. It is widely accepted and used all over the world. Even so, technology is still improving, so even more advances are to be expected in the near future.

VoIP seems to be a good replacement for the Plain Old Telephone System or POTS which is still the standard. Of course, not every system is perfect. Even though VoIP provides many great services, there are still a few drawbacks and you should always be sure to compared VoIP Reviews when choosing a service.

One of the primary issues with the VoIP system is security and regulating the growth. The growth of VoIP is similar to how the internet grew in the 1990s. As the public becomes more aware of the advantages of using VoIP for both home and business, the industry will continue to grow.


Ways To Use VoIP

1. One VoIP user would connect to another VoIP user.

2. You can connect to an interface that in turns connects you to a land-line or mobile phone. There is normally a small fee associated with this type of VoIP, though the costs are minimal.

VoIP wouldn’t have been possible even less than a generation ago because it is solely dependent on the infrastructure (and bandwidth expansion) of the internet. VoIP has allowed families and friends to communicate over long distance (often with video) at little to no cost.

Today’s VoIP has evolved based on competition and also to meet the demands of consumers. While the most effective (and cost free) use of VoIP is PC to PC (with both parties using a VoIP service), you can also have a VoIP number which can follow you anywhere and forward to any other phone if needed.

What’s Needed?

Equipment will vary, but you’ll need certain things in order to utilize VoIP; first and foremost is broadband Internet connection (becoming common in most communities) and suitable software installed on your PC.

Security and Privacy

Most VoIP users will simply be communicating with family and friends, not necessarily worried about security or proprietary information being stolen. That however changes if you’re a business, or if you’re discussing matters better kept private. In that case you’d want to utilize a private VoIP networks that utilized stronger security and possibly encrypts calls.

Private networks may offer the following:

  • Fax
  • Email
  • Voicemail
  • CRM (customer relationship management) integration

And this can all be accomplished no matter where the person is geographically or what time of the day. A business person in Los Angles can easily conduct business via VoIP with an associate on the other side of the world, easily, seamlessly and instantly.

When Utilizing VoIP you have the potential to:

  • Reduce travel and training costs (using web and video conferencing)
  • Grow you system as needed
  • Have a single number ring multiple devices simultaneously
  • Reduce overhead
  • Simply management
  • Access the system anywhere you have an internet connection

VOIP text with IP Phone in the background

How VoIP Works And Why You Should Switch

Voice over IP or VoIP technology refers to the delivery of voice communications via internet networks. VoIP is much less expensive than traditional phone systems, yet provides as good, if not better connectivity.

When someone wonders ‘how does VoIP work’, the easiest definition is via a computer and IP protocol. This is a simple explanation, though. VoIP calls consist of signaling, encoding, setting up channels, and digitizing analog phone signals.

VoIP signals, instead of being transmitted over a circuit switched network, are digitized, packeted, and transmitted as an IP packet over a packet switched network. These types of transmissions can take up a great deal of resources and must be carefully monitored when using time division multiplexing, or TDM networks.

The early VoIP provider services often mirrored traditional architecture. Current technology provides much more flexibility and many more options. Service providers such as Skype & magicJack offer closed networks which cater to private users, but still the ease and convenience of very cheap calls. These types of service providers may charge for access or connections to other communication networks.

This limits the ability of its users to mix and match between third party software and hardware. Third generation VoIP providers typically use federated VoIP which allows dynamic interaction and communication between users, even if they are on different domains.

VoIP systems use special encoding for video, voice, and audio to enable delivery by digital media. Depending upon available bandwidth and the requirements of the application, some communications must be compressed to fit narrow bandwidth.

In 2004, mass market VoIP services started using existing broadband internet infrastructure to place and receive calls. Subscribers could use these systems much like they did the traditional public switched telephone network or PSTN.

VoIP service providers who provide full service operations will give their customers both inbound and outbound calling, along with inbound direct dialing. Many of these service providers also charge a flat fee for unlimited calling each month. Some even offer international calls to certain countries. Calls between service subscribers are typically free, even internationally.

It is necessary to have a VoIP enabled phone to set up a VoIP system. This can be a computer with audio and a microphone or an actual phone provided by a VoIP service provider. The phone is connected to the IP network via either wireless or Ethernet.

If a subscriber wants to use their own landline or analog phone, the service provider can provide an adapter which will connect their phone to the internet network. There are cable modems and internet gateways which have this technology already built-in.

If a computer is equipped with a speaker or headset and a microphone, the subscriber just needs to install a softphone application. This software provides a dial pad and display so the user may make their calls.

Using VoIP can help decrease communication costs, while still providing the ability to quickly and effectively place calls all over the world. Some areas of the communication network are less reliable than others, especially if bandwidth is too narrow.

Since 2007, VoIP services have included number portability where a new subscriber can keep their number as they move from VoIP service provider to provider. The former carrier must map the number to a new number assigned by the new service provider. This is a process is transparent to the subscriber.

In answer to the question of how does VoIP work, VoIP is an easy, portable, and affordable way to make calls all over the world. Using existing infrastructure and equipment makes VoIP technology a very good way to communicate, both personally and for business.