What is VoIP?

June 14, 2018 / GuidesFor Team

Voice Over Internet Protocol (VoIP) covers phone calls done over the Internet. This is different from calls done using legacy telephone lines, which are known as Public Switched Telephone Network (PSTN). VoIP is interchangeable with broadband phone service, broadband telephony, IP telephony, IP communications, Internet telephony, voice over broadband, and others. These terms denote that the voice signal is transmitted digitally through the Internet.

People shift towards VoIP because of the price. Businesses transition to VoIP in order to reduce the cost in communication, and enhance features to interact and communicate between employees and clients. For personal users, VoIP has radically changed voice calls as computers and mobile devices can be utilized to communicate for free.

A number of people interchangeably equate VoIP and Internet Telephony. The two are distinct but related. Internet telephony refers to telecommunications digital side that uses the internet protocol called VoIP. It transfers voice through the internet. Internet telephony is the mother concept that uses VoIP in voice transmission.

How VoIP Connects with Different Kinds of Devices

VoIP can be connected with different kinds of devices. The difference lies with the kind of devices that are on the two communicating sides.

Computer to Computer

This mode of communication is easy, free, and the most common. Computers or devices that have an operating system and utilize digital data (desktop, laptop, tablet PCs, including smartphones) must be connected to the Internet, and paired with all the required hardware to speak and listen (microphone, speakers, headphone). The call should work, especially if the person on the other side has a similar device to communicate to with the caller. Individuals can also communicate by connecting to a Local Area Network (LAN) that is IP-enabled, even if no internet connection is present.

Phone to Phone

VoIP can be utilized by analog and cellular phones through particular set-ups:

Using an ATA:

ATA, or Analog Telephone Adapter, is a device that connects a standard PSTN phone directly to the internet through the computer. The ATA can be plugged to the computer or a phone line with the installed software for a VoIP service. Voice from a normal phone is converted to digital data through the ATA.

Using IP Phones:

An IP phone may be mistaken as a normal phone. It differs from a normal phone in that it is connected to a router or a gateway instead of the regular PSTN network. The IP phone connects with the RJ-45 plug instead of the RJ-11 socket. An RJ-45 plus is similar to the RJ-11 plug. The former is larger compared to the latter.

Phone to Computer and Vice-Versa

VoIP calls can be done by using a PSTN phone from a computer to call another on his computer and vice-versa.

What are VoIP services?

There are four kinds of VoIP services. These include:

Two-way is a service that permits calls between VoIP service and the PSTN through telephone numbers;

Peer to peer utilizes the internet. It does not involve the use of the traditional telephone network;

VoIP In permits calls from the PSTN to the VoIP service through a telephone number;

VoIP Out allows calls from the VoIP to PSTN.

What is the connection between VoIP and Skype?

Skype is a VoIP system that uses peer-to-peer networking. It permits real-time communication between two computers on the internet.

What about VoIP headset?

A VoIP headset is audio equipment that is placed on the head to provide hearing in the ears and obtain voice from the mouth. It permits people to communicate through VoIP. The VoiP headset make the communication clearer among all parties, blocking out external distractions.

What are the advantages of VoIP?

VoIP offers more flexibility compared to the analog phone system. VoIP has various features compared to that of an analog phone system. It can even allow handling many calls at the same time. VoIP is perfect for businesses that receive thousands of calls daily.

A VoIP phone system’s voice signals are sent and received by digital technology that have been changed into data packets. This is contrary to the analog system that utilizes copper wire and plain old telephone service (POTS). Analog system only boasts of redial, speed-dial, call transferring, mute, and call-forwarding.

The digital technology of VoIP results to its limitless features. Other advantages it provides businesses are as follows: more extensive security features that protect recorded calls and other data that comes in; ability to scale and expand as the company grows and needs more communication facilities; recording of calls that can be used as documentation should the need arise later on; and call analytics which can be used as research basis to discover the evolving needs of customers as well as the performance of the employees manning the calls.

Business owners can opt to decide which features that they want to utilize in their establishments. There are instances when their employees are mobile. Different features like follow-me, voicemail to email, call re-routing, and auto-attendant are available with VoIP. VoIP is very accessible and portable. Whenever there is access to the Internet, VoIP can also be accessed. Moreover, staff can remotely work without decreasing the quality and level of service that employees provide to clients.

VoIP has revolutionized the way we do communications and perform business. Its advantages prepare enterprises to become more competitive in the digital world while satisfying their growing number of clients.

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