Today, internet speeds are lightning fast, and you can download large files in seconds. What if I told you that you can even make and receive calls over the web? Many people already use this technology but don’t know about it. The feature is already enabled in their mobile phones, and if they’re connected to high bandwidth internet, the calls automatically transfer via wifi, saving you from having to purchase a call package. Using VoIP, however, one can even make calls from a desktop or laptop.
This is not a new technology, but now more and more people are using it; thus, its usage is now in the limelight. Today we will show you how VoIP is set up and how it works. In addition, we will demonstrate how you can receive and make calls from your desktop. You will be able to receive a phone call when you have your phone on airplane mode and connected to good WiFi, and we will reveal that later on in this article.
VoIP is the short form of Voice Over Internet Protocol which is basically a method to receive and place a phone call over the internet. A lot of companies have started using VoIP as the alternative for their local telephone as it saves a ton of money, and companies don’t have to pay extra bills in order to connect with their customers and clients.
It might come to you as a surprise, but VoIP isn’t a new concept; telephones were already using digital lines in order to carry the telephone signals from one place to the other from the late 90s. With VoIP, you don’t have to worry about bills, international calls budget as one can do unlimited calls all over the globe with ease.
What Does It Mean To Have VoIP?
Okay, now that you are well versed with the definition of VoIP, let’s find out what does it really mean to be using VoIP? Will you notice any difference during the call? The answer is no, you will find that it is just like a regular telephonic call, but it could have a better audio quality in some cases, but that totally depends on your personal experience and internet bandwidth.
The whole VoIP structure is built on open standards; as a result, with the implementation of VoIP, you get to call anyone without the need for a cellular network and even from your computer as well. One of the examples of VoIP calls was in the early days of Skype when people used to call in on Skype to their relatives that live on the other side of the world as those calls were literally of no cost in comparison to the international call charges.
Even Skype still provides this service, but now this technology has been adopted in mobile phones. But if you think the main objective of VoIP is to offer you an alternative to cellular phone calls, then you are wrong, and we will explain how in the next section.
The Working Of VoIP
VoIP requires an IP address which is a basic necessity for the internet connection, and every user on the internet has one. If we think about VoIP from the traditional way of telecommunication, we can see that it’s a big jump from the century-old conventional method of making calls.
With VoIP service in place, your voice or audio is converted into a digital signal which is received by the other person on the telephone via the internet. In case you are making a VoIP call to a regular phone number, the signal gets converted into a regular signal which can be received by telephone and reaches the destination. You can even make a simple phone turn into a VoIP receiver using a special adapter, and even with a hotspot, you can use the VoIP capabilities of your phone and laptop to make a phone call. Given below, we have explained the working of the VoIP in 4 easy steps.
- Step 1 – Your phone makes a connection with your switch or, in some cases, a router that is located in your Local Area Network (LAN).
- Step 2 – When you type in the phone number, the IP of your phone will communicate with the VoIP service provider, which in most cases is your Internet Service Provider (ISP). After that, the ISP will make the connection of your phone call with the other party.
- Step 3 – The connection is made, and your VoIP exchanges the required data packets from your phone’s IP.
- Step 4 – The VoIP which is present in your phone will now convert those digital packets into the sound which you get to hear from the speaker or the headset.
That’s how a VoIP service works on your telephone, and the same goes for the calls that you make from your laptop or desktop using this service.
When you are using VoIP service, you are entirely bypassing your cellular connection, which uses the analog phone system. There was a time when you needed to have an expensive VoIP device to be able to use this type of system. But now, it is present in every smartphone that you will be buying.
Hardware Required For VoIP Services?
Well, there is nothing much that you require; if you are using the internet from a router, you already have the basic setup to get things going. Some of the VoIP services might only work with your computing devices, such as laptops and desktops. In contrast, you can still make phone calls using the VoIP adapter with your traditional phone. The basic needs for using VoIP service are a high-speed internet connection, a computer, or a smartphone, which allows VoIP service. That’s all you need.
There is no special software that you need to make a connection with the VoIP service as your VoIP-enabled devices will automatically create a connection to the broadband and will work exactly like your telephone. On the other hand, if you are actually using an adapter, you can dial up a phone call just like you usually do on your phone, and your ISP will also provide you with a dial tone.
Will There Be An Issue Making A Long Distance Phone Call?
If we look at the traditional long-distance phone call system, we see they charge a massive amount of money, even for short-duration calls. But now, things have changed with the VoIP service, and in most cases, it is free to use. But some VoIP might charge you for the long-distance calls, but it is hardly seen anywhere as the call goes through the internet for which you are already paying money to your ISP provider.
The VoIP works with the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) standard codecs, and they use the following protocols to establish the connection between you and the other party.
- 711 is the protocol that is used to send the files and the data packets in uncompressed form over the internet.
- 729 is the opposite of 711; in this protocol, the VoIP will send the compressed pockets over the connection.
- Even in VoIP connection, your router uses Transmission Control Protocol (TCP) which is used to break the messages into smaller packets which then becomes easier to send over the connection.
- ITU T.38 can be used to send faxes using VoIP service or even from the IP network. If you are sending something which doesn’t require voice communication, then VoIP uses this protocol to send those files and make non-voice communication.
- Real-Time Transport Protocol (RTP) will be used when the connection of voice is encapsulated on your IP.
- Secure RTP is the encrypted version of the RTP, which we have just mentioned above.
- Furthermore, Session Initiation Protocol (SIP) is one of the rigorous standards in terms of signaling. It is used to maintain or create the connection and even to end the calls.
- 323 protocol will manage the calls and the controls.
- Last is Session Description Protocol (SDP) which is basically used for announcing the sessions of multimedia connection and the initiation of WebSocket transports.
Benefits Of Using VoIP
Surely you have considered implementing VoIP, but we would like to share some of the benefits of VoIP before you decide. Find out if VoIP is right for your business or personal use.
1. Low Cost
One of the major benefits of using VoIP is the low cost that you get to pay to your ISP provider. Adapting to the VoIP service can be of great help to reduce the cost of your business working. With VoIP, there is no need for extra hardware since broadband is behind powering up this service.
2. Better Accessibility
If we take a step back from the cost efficiency of VoIP, we also get to see that VoIP is the one that gives you the advantage of cloud-based services even with your decent internet connection. In addition to this, in case you are not able to take a phone call right now, that call will be sent to some other representative, and if no one is able to attend the call, you send a customized message to the customer from your side.
With the use of VoIP, you don’t have to stick to one place with your business phone. You can take the calls anytime you want, and all you need is wifi connectivity in your phone. This allows your business to be more flexible and not bound by time or place. Lastly, VoIP adapts to the nature of how your business works, what are the shift hours. With its implementation, your employees don’t have to be physically present at the office. They can work from anywhere they want as long as they have a tablet and their smartphones working with the internet connection.
3. Tons Of Features
VoIP service provides you with the ability to perform multitasking, making it possible to be more productive in business. For example, if you receive an essential voicemail from one of the customers and you are not able to attend it, you can send that in the system, and the person who is free at the time can revert back to that customer. In that way, more customer and representative conversations will take place, resulting in better sales conversions. With VoIP service, your business expands, and more customers are linked to your business in a short time.
4. Easy Conference Calls
Now holding conference calls is much easier as all the calls will be using converged data networks instead of dedicated phone lines. This results in better interconnectivity between the participants. Most of the time, if you plan on using the traditional method of conducting a conference call, you will need to pay extra to your network provider, and the audio quality will still be poor. With VoIP, conference calling features are built-in, and anyone can participate in a conference call at any time of the day. In the VoIP system, everything is already in place and nothing needs to be done.
We are sure you must have thought about what happens if the internet just straight up stops working. Will the VoIP still function? Well, in simple terms, yes, it will do its work, but then it will take the help of a call forwarding system. In which the call of the customer will be forwarded to your personal phone or some other phone where the cellular network is working. You can choose where calls can be forwarded. As a result, even if there’s a local power outage or bad weather, your customer will still be able to make contact with you.
VoIP is all about saving money; as a business, you can switch to VoIP with ease and save tons of money that you would have otherwise spent on cellular services. Even if your business starts using VoIP service, not all of your employees will be able to make IP-enabled phone calls. If you plan strategically, you can use your existing phone equipment, even if they are analog phones, with the VoIP service.
Bottom line is that VoIP is surely the future of sales, even for general telephonic calls. In the coming years, when internet connection will be everywhere, we can actually see the extinction of cellular network phone calls as well.
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