How we make telephone calls is undergoing significant changes. Many of the circumstances surrounding this issue have changed already. For example, with long distance calling, many services providers use the technology known as Voice Over IP (VOIP). If you aren’t too familiar with VOIP, then this article will change how you think about the way long distance telephone calls are currently being made, and how they will be made going forward. Analogue audio signals are turned into digital data by Voice Over IP so that this data can be transmitted over the internet.
You might be wondering how useful this is. Just think about it. If analogue signals can be turned into digital data, a standard internet connection can be turned into a method by VOIP for making phone calls anyplace in the world practically for free, other than the fee you pay for your internet service, which will allow you to completely bypass phone companies.
There is the potential for Voice Over IP to completely revolutionize how the phone systems in the world operate. There are a number of well-established VOIP service providers, and this number continues to grow. The leading telecommunications operators in the world are realizing the endless possibilities that this new technology offers, and are establishing VOIP calling centres all over the world and promoting VOIP phone system sales.
How To Make A Call
There are three different ways you can make a call with a VOIP phone system according to business phone systems San Antonio:
ATA (gateway) -The easiest way for making a VOIP phone call is using an ATA (short for analogue telephone adaptor) which are referred to as gateways sometimes. These devices allow you to use the existing analogue phones that you have. You just plug your handset into an ATA (gateway). Then the ATA is connected to your internet connection or computer, which allows you to make VOIP phone calls. The analogue signal is taken by the ATA from your phone and makes it a digital signal that can be transmitted over the internet. There are some ATA’s that have additional software loaded on a host computer, which allows you to accurately configure it to use for VOIP.
IP Phones- The handsets look like regular standard handsets. Instead of RJ 11 standard connectors, they come with an RJ 45 Ethernet connector. The phones come with all the hardware and software needed for handling VOIP calls built into them already. They connect to your router directly, which provides a very cost effective and fast entrance into the Voice Over IP world.
Computer to computer- This method is the simplest way you can use VOIP technology. Many companies offer affordable software that can be used for this kind of VOIP. The only charge you will have to pay is your internet service provider bill, even when making long distance calls. The only things you need are a fast internet connection, suitable sound card, speakers and a microphone.
There is a good chance you have made a VOIP call before without realizing it. VOIP is already used by the major phone companies for routing long distance calls by the thousands. They go through a circuit switch first and then into an IP gate. The gateway on the other end then receives this and it is routed to a different local circuit switch. VOIP phone systems are being installed by an increasing number of companies. This technology will continue to grow until it reaches every household and business around the world.
With VOIP you are able to make phone calls from anywhere as long as you can access a broadband connection. What this means is that users are able to take their ATA’s or IP phones with them when they go out of town and can still basically access their home phone.
A softphone is used by some people so that they can access their VOIP service in order to make calls. A softphone is a software application that has been specially developed so that it loads your VOIP service onto your laptop or desktop computer. Some of them even come with an interface that is displayed on the computer screen that looks just like a regular phone. The software application lets you make VOIP calls right from your computer. So you can make calls anyplace in the world as long you have broadband connection access.
A majority of the traditional telephone companies will charge you for extra features you add to your account. Many of these features come standard with VOIP service provides. These features include:
– Calling Waiting
– Caller ID
– Cal Waiting
– Caller ID
– Three-way dialing
– Return call
– Repeat dialing
– Call transfer
Advanced call filtering features are offered by some VOIP service providers. What these extra featured o is let you decide how calls from a specific number will handed based on information from the caller ID. It lets you:
1. Forward the phone call to a specific number
2. Send the phone call to voicemail directly
3. Send a busy signal to the caller
4. Have a not-in-service message play
Many VOIP providers also let you check your voicemail online or attach a message to an email that gets sent to a PDA or your computer. You should check with the various VOIP phone system providers to find out what features are offered since service prices and packages can really vary.
Having a streamlined VOIP phone network offers several cost saving benefits. Having a VOIP phone systems results in network administrators having just one network that needs to be maintained rather than two. The phone system’s portability is also simplified greatly. That is because a web interface can be used to configure a majority of VOIP phone systems, which the network administrator can manage. The MAC process (move, add, change) is made a lot easier. You also won’t need to contact your service or system provide every time you want to carry out a MAC. This provides your company with lower ongoing costs.
When companies use a VOIP system, another cost savings they enjoy is because there are multiple offers are seamlessly connected, no matter where they might be located in the world, they are able to share may VOIP features, including:
– Voice mail system
– Auto attendant facilities
– One single receptionist
How To Choose A VOIP Phone System
If you have made the decision that getting a VOIP phone system for your business is the right step to take, then the next thing you will need to figure out is what components from your existing phone system you will be able to keep. Your potential cost savings from using existing digital equipment can be enormous. You can IP enable many digital phone systems through software upgrades and minor hardware additions.
When you are shopping for a system you need to know which features they offer as standard and which ones are options that cost extra. In addition, you need to make sure you know exactly what the system includes. Many providers will claim everything you need is included. However, standard components may vary from one provider to another. So you need to make sure the systems you are comparing are equivalent from various suppliers.
When it comes to your existing equipment you need to ask about compatibility. The technology that many VOIP systems use might effect how the existing telephone hardware is implemented.
Another thing you will need to make sure of is that any devices like security systems, credit card processors and fax machines can be integrated with your new VOIP system. You need to let vendors know about these devices so that the phone system they provide you with will meet your requirements.
One final thing, don’t attempt to save money through purchasing a used VOIP phone system. Keep in mind that VOIP is a new type of technology. Even equipment from last year might be outdated. The installation cost is still going to apply whether your system is second hand or new. Reliability issues could make your service costs even higher. It’s not worth all of the hassles. Any potential cost savings will most likely be wiped out by higher secondary costs.