VoIP Phone Systems
Instead of using a regular phone line this technology allows a person to make phone calls using a broadband internet connection. Some VoIP services work only over your computer or a special VoIP phone while others let you use a telephone connected to a VoIP adapter. You may call other people using the same service with some VoIP services but with others it could allow you to call anyone who has a telephone number including long distance, mobile, local and international numbers.
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A high speed internet connection is required through a cable modem, a local area network or high speed services. You also need a computer, adaptor or specialized phone. You will need some software and a microphone if you use your computer. Otherwise special VoIP phones plug directly into your internet connection. And if you use a telephone with a VoIP adapter you can use the phone normally.
People using VoIP can use this service to make free phone calls. Using free VoIP software that is available allows you to avoid charges from phone companies and allows for free internet calls. As long as you have broadband connectivity you will be able to make calls using VoIP from anywhere. So business travelers can take their specialized phones or phone adapters on trips and have access to their home phones.
A flaw in using VoIP would be reliability. People are used to their phones and know that they work. Internet connection is not always available and may not always work. If the power goes out your phone will work, unless it's cordless. If you are using VoIP that means you would be without a phone if the power goes out.
There are minute rate plans that work like cell phone plans that are being offered for as little as $30 a month from some VoIP companies. Then there are other unlimited plans that are $79. Features that normal phone companies charge extra for are offered for free with most VoIP companies. Like called ID, three-way calling, call waiting, call transfer, return call and repeat dial.