What is VoIP?

Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) is a communications protocol that functions to transmit voice messages over the internet. Protocol in this context means a set of guidelines implemented to allow orderly communication. With a reasonable internet connection, quality phone service can be delivered via an internet connection instead of a phone service company. VoIP is a relatively new technology but it so far has achieved widespread use and success.

How VoIP works

VoIP, in simple terms, means making or receiving phones calls over the internet. It is frequently referred to as IP technology (ITP) because it uses the same protocols as the internet. This means that internet is not necessarily needed, but the same protocols are. VoIP encapsulates audio via a codec into data packets, dispatches these data packets across an IP network where it then dismantles them back into audio at the other end of the connection.

To set up VoIP you will need a broadband internet connection, which can be DSL, cable, E1 or wireless. For most instances of VoIP your business will need a connection that does not turn off with a speed of at least 3Mbps on upload and download. The amount of bandwidth a connection needs will depend on the compression of the voice being transmitted.

Benefits of VoIP

The two main benefits of switching to VoIP is the difference in functionality and cost. VoIP is a rapidly expanding market. It is particularly useful for smaller to medium size businesses with fewer locations. Popular apps are choosing to function using VoIP for example, Skype.

In terms of functionality, the use of VoIP in business is extremely helpful because of its portability. The service can be used on smartphones, personal computers and other internet devices. If being used for call centre services, it can be easily accessed from anywhere with a good internet connection. Incoming calls automatically route to your VoIP phone when you plug it into a network.

Also, using VoIP will lower your monthly phone bill, this includes bills that pertain to long distance phone calls. This is largely because of traditional phone companies being monopolies or government services. Savings also occur because of the single provider for both data and voice. This means the system already in place can be more efficient and sometimes VoIP can come at no extra cost if the plan you’re currently on is under capacity.

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