1. What is VoIP, and how does it work?
VoIP? Today you can make phone calls any time, anywhere using an Internet-connected computer, a headset, and Voice Over Internet Protocol (VoIP).
The first thing you need to understand about VoIP is that you have to forget copper wires and handsets. VoIP technology enables traditional telephony services to operate over computer networks.
VoIP is the technology that converts your voice into a digital signal, allowing you to make a call directly from a computer, a VoIP phone, or other data-driven devices.
VoIP, simply said, is a phone service delivered over the internet.
You may also hear it referred to as IP telephony, internet telephony, broadband telephony, or broadband phone service.
Here at DTS InfoTech, we have used VoIP for many years now, and we give it a hearty thumbs up when asked about it! It’s my go-to phone I pick up when I want to make a long-distance domestic call. I can stay on the line with my older brother, who lives a long way away, for as long as I want and not get charged for a long-distance call.
VoIP technology is all very cool, and I admit I take it for granted now.
2. Do you need special phones for VoIP?
Speaking in sweeping generalizations, the answer is “yes”. VoIP Phones are technologically different from classic “copper wire” phones. In many cases, older copper-style phones can be used with various adapters, but in those cases you’d lose many of the new beneficial features. It would only be a phone.
VoIP allows you to make phone calls differently, with lots of advantages (such as conference calling and transferring calls between extensions or sites). But you still need a phone handset or software. It encloses both input and output for voice and is the main interface between the user and the technology.
There are numerous types and manufacturers of phones you can use with VoIP. Rather than list them all, we would encourage to follow the link and see for yourself.
3. How much does VoIP cost?
By and large, VoIP systems are cheaper than their traditional landline counterparts.
While you can find an IP phone service as low as $19.99 per month, plans usually start at around $25 per line per month. This pricing accounts for the cost of setup, equipment, and ongoing maintenance costs. You also have to pay for an internet connection, which is separate.
4. What are the advantages and disadvantages of VoIP?
Since DTS InfoTech services small businesses, this article is directed at small businesses.
That said, business VoIP is rapidly growing in use worldwide!
While technology has countless advantages, it also has its share of disadvantages. Advantages include the huge potential savings and greater scalability of systems. One disadvantage is that it requires a reliable internet connection with high bandwidth availability.
- Voice Quality
- Extra/Less Expensive Features
- Reliable Internet Connection Required
- Power Outages/Emergencies
5. How fast does my internet need to be for VoIP?
Once you decide to ditch your traditional landline for good and upgrade to a business Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) phone system, you need to prepare for the transition.
One of the big things you need to know is whether or not your current internet service can support your new system.
Because VoIP relies on your existing internet connection to make and receive calls, it’s important that you have sufficient bandwidth to allow for reliable and crystal-clear calls.
The amount of bandwidth you need depends on the number of concurrent VoIP calls you expect to make. To give you an idea on how many calls your bandwidth can support, refer to the table below:
Number of Concurrent Calls Required Dedicated Bandwidth
1 100 Kbps Up and Down
3 300 Kbps Up and Down
5 500 Kbps Up and Down
10 1 MBps Up and Down
One of the best ways to determine whether your internet connection is efficient and if your bandwidth is adequate is through running a Speed Test. This test will show you how much Upload and Download speed you have at your business.
VoIP is another topic that you’ll need to do some research on for your business. As we said earlier, we love VoIP here at DTS InfoTech. It does have advantages and disadvantages but so does anything in life, not just phone calls.
DTS InfoTech Can Help
We’re good at this VoIP thing. Seriously, we are. We sell and service 8x8 phones, but we haven’t mentioned 8x8 in this article because this is not a sales pitch for any manufacturer.
We know how intimidating technology can be, we make a living helping people just like you who have questions about all things technology, and that includes making calls over the Internet.
Most small businesses do not have the technical resources or time to understand all this geek stuff. If this describes you, we can help.
If you would like more information about Voice Over Internet Protocol (VoIP) give us a call, we’re always happy to chat, and the call is free!
Dedicated to your success,
Business Development Manager
dts|infotech . . . secure computer networks that work