What exactly are VoIP (Voice over IP) and how does it function? VoIP stands for voice over internet protocol.
Simply put, it simply means making telephone calls using the internet instead of through a normal home or mobile phone line. A VoIP system works simply by converting your normal analogue voice signals into digital packets, which are sent as data over a broadband internet connection. This allows your callers to make a standard telephone call, or even to access a web site using an internet protocol browser. The way in which this works is simple.
If you were to make a normal telephone call, you would enter the phone number of the person who is to receive the call, followed by the port number. The VoIP service would then convert your incoming telephone signal to the correct format, which would be then sent out to the other end of the line. This can then be converted back into analogue sound so that when the message reaches its destination, it sounds as normal as possible.
So what makes a good VoIP system? There are a few things to look for.
* If the VoIP system you are thinking of buying comes with the ability to use a web browser – particularly a modern one such as Firefox or Internet Explorer – you can bet that the quality of the calls you will receive will be high. A good VoIP service will allow you to switch between different platforms without any problems.
* The reliability of the system is an important consideration. A system that works well for one individual may not necessarily work well for you, but if you are purchasing a whole package it’s best to find out how long it will take your calls to get through.
* It is a good idea to try out several systems before committing to a particular one. If one doesn’t work well, you will know right away and won’t waste money on a service you won’t need or want.
* The VoIP service that you select should also provide good customer support. It is always a good idea to check if they have an expert on the customer service team that can provide you with the technical support you need, especially when it comes to installation.
* It’s also advisable to find a reliable internet service provider as part of your selection. If you want to make sure that your internet calls will reach their destinations, it’s a good idea to find a company that offers a good customer service record, with excellent speeds and easy installation.
Once you’ve made the final decision, you can start researching VoIP services and find out which of them can offer you the best deals when you choose a reliable internet service provider. Some providers charge a monthly fee, others offer a one off monthly payment, and some charge a subscription fee for each and every call you make over a period of time.
You will also need to consider the number of minutes each plan offers, and how much it costs you each month to use each plan. Once you have decided on how many minutes you need, you can then decide if you want unlimited use of these minutes or only certain calls.
Asking the provider for advice about adding extra features is also another option, such as voice recognition, voicemail, conference calling and even caller ID are all ways to extend the use of your existing VoIP system. All of these add value and should be considered when deciding on a package.
While you may think that you have made the best choice, you may still find that you can do better. Just remember to be flexible when you go shopping around, and you should have no trouble finding a suitable VoIP service.