The Basics of VoIP: Comparing VoIP to Traditional Phone Systems

VoIP telephone systemsTraditional phone systems operate over dedicated transmission lines that provide power to the phones. With most phone carriers having their own backup generators, disruptions at local power companies rarely affect traditional phone services.

In contrast, Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) converts voice calls to packets that travel over data networks. This allows a single, robust network to carry an organization’s data and voice traffic on a converged system.

How Does VoIP work?

VoIP converts voice calls to data packets that travel over networks, using the same IP that facilitates the exchange of data. Even though organizations can accomplish this using a standard phone with an adaptor, these businesses can only make most VoIP calls using either IP phones or softphones.

With these systems, users with softphones (i.e. on their laptops) can connect to the phone system through the Internet, regardless of their location. Users can also make calls entirely over IP networks, while in some cases, VoIP routes calls over traditional phone networks to reach certain destination phones.

What are VoIP’s Benefits?

With minimal additional charges to access Internet resources regardless of location, calls that use online phone networks incur very low call charges. VoIP systems often also include conference call support inclusive within the particular system used.

With VoIP using the same network and protocol as other Internet services, integrating phone services with email becomes easier. In fact, these systems are a central component of emergency notification systems at some organizations.

Why is VoIP Significant?

VoIP is becoming an increasing practical alternative to traditional phone services. In most cases, organizations save considerable costs on long distance and other phone services that would normally cost a significant amount extra.

There is a wealth of more information about VoIP, including the difference between hosted and on-premises VoIP systems. To learn about these, contact your local business communications providers or search online for VoIP providers directly.

Sources:

http://www.ofcom.org.uk/
http://www.voip-info.org/
http://www.wavenetuk.com/hostedvoip