Wednesday, March 7, 2012

How to: Slash those phone bills

Seen this months telephone bill? I bet your going into depression right now.

Well, unless you lived under a rock all these years you should know that there's a technology which will let you to cut those hefty call bills.

Since it first appeared a few decades ago, VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) has been used by smart people to avoid pricey phone calls.

It does this by sending calls over the internet rather than traditional phone networks. Making use of the internet in this way means the cost of calls can be significantly below that charged by phone companies. In some cases, calls can even be free.

VoIP works in a relatively simple way. Each time you make a phone call your voice is converted into a stream of data. Then, rather than being sent over the phone network, this data stream travels over your broadband internet connection.

If the person you're calling is also using a VoIP service, your call will remain on the internet for its entire journey. However, if you're dialling a conventional phone, the call will be carried as far as possible over the internet before being handed back to the relevant phone network.

Most VoIP services like ITP also come with an allocated landline number which allows other people to call you. In these cases the call will be routed to the nearest handover point (called a POP or point of presence) and then travel over the internet to your VoIP phone or computer.

The Benefits
The biggest benefit of VoIP can be summed up in a single word: cost. VoIP service providers avoid carrier phone networks, so if you're calling someone who uses the same VoIP service, the call is likely to be free. You can check out this portal to get info on VoIP price comparison which should hopefully help you make an informed decision.

The Features
VoIP providers offer a free voice mail box that can send you an email alert each time a message is left. Other features on offer include caller ID, caller screening and call diversions to another number. Some service providers also offer three-way calling, where you can set up a mini-conference call.

What you get
The end result is a telephone service that can be far more flexible than a traditional offering, and is comparable to sophisticated business systems costing many thousands of dollars.

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