Voice over IP (VoIP) is a methodology and group of technologies for the delivery of voice communications and multimedia sessions over Internet Protocol (IP) networks, such as the Internet. Other terms commonly associated with VoIP are IP telephony, Internet telephony, broadband telephony, and broadband phone service.
What are the benefits of VoIP ?
VoIP is great for both residential and business uses. It can cut down the cost of communications dramatically. Due to the reach of internet, making overseas calls particularly becomes very cheap, at a fraction of the cost. Due to the differences in the infrastructure and cost structure of fixed line and cellular networks in different countries – the cost of overseas calls can vary. Despite this variance, a VOIP overseas call would be much cheaper than a traditional phone call.
If both ends use VoIP, the call cost can in fact be zero.
Even the most basic VoIP plans include services that are only available from landline providers for a significant fee. Some of these features include Caller ID, E911, Call Forwarding and Call Waiting, Voice Mail, Simultaneous Ring, Address Book, Virtual Second Line, 3-Way Calling, Choose Your Area Code, and more.
What is needed to set up a VoIP solution?
All you need is an internet connection, a router (optional, if you are connecting multiple internet enabled devices – which is usually the case) within the premises (residential or business) and a VoIP phone (or a normal phone with an adapter).
Now, what happens on this cloud that is labelled as the “Internet”? What do you need there to have a working VoIP solution?
What you need is a VoIP provider that does all the hard work – allowing you to make VoIP phone calls without any fancy technical knowledge.
Who or what is a VoIP provider?
A VoIP provider offers VoIP Internet telephony solutions to residential and commercial customers. Also known as an Internet phone service provider, a VoIP service provider generally provides the VoIP hardware and services to subscribers at a monthly rate, although hosted VoIP services are also quite common.
A VoIP provider offers services (and often equipment) for fees. Choosing a good provider is requires research. This starts with comparing the fees and services of the potential providers. After that, it has to be followed up with researching reviews on the internet. Consumers also have to be aware of hidden costs. What may appear to be more expensive upfront may turn out to be cheaper in the longer term – because some providers have a low upfront fees that they make up with rolling fees every month. This is also complicated by various bundle offers and preferred country call packages. A careful evaluation is quite necessary.
World VoIP Providers
North America VoIP Providers
Google Voice permits VoIP connections through Gmail or Google Talk, but offers no simple way to communicate with users of other VoIP services, e.g. by direct connection between IP addresses or SIP gateway. However, some users are able to receive VoIP calls with their Google Voice accounts at the SIP address”sip:+email@example.com” (where xxxxxxxxxx is their US Google Voice number).