Internet phones use VoIP or Voice over internet protocol technology for telephone service and voice communication. However, these internet phones also have certain disadvantages as well. The following are both the advantages and disadvantages of Internet phones.
The main advantage of using internet phones is that it makes telephone communication more convenient. It is also more cost effective. A person doesn’t need a landline or any other extra hardware to make calls. Internet telephony services can be obtained at much lower rates than what conventional telephone lines cost. Even VoIP technology offers a competitive rate with other voice communication methods.
Internet telephony is also very easy to use. It does not require any special skills to operate it. Once it has been set up, simply make a phone call and the IP address of the computer where the internet telephone call will be routed gets assigned. This means that no change in telephone number is necessary. Thus, there is no difference in cost for internet calls compared to traditional ones.
Another advantage of internet phone systems is the flexibility they offer. Many internet phones can allow users to make free local, STD, ISD, ISMP, fax, paging, conference and voice conference calls. Some can even dial 911 emergency calls. In addition, these systems can transmit sound and video. Some internet phones even support visual data like videos, animations and games. Thus, users get more features and better sound quality from their internet phone system.
The biggest disadvantage of internet phone services is that they are dependant on the internet connection. If the connection is down, then so is the internet telephone call. This is why most IP phones are meant for use only while the internet is active. That said, the voice quality deteriorates when the connection is down even for a few seconds, which is why many IP phones do not work on public networks such as dial-up.
One of the reasons VoIP is becoming more popular with businesses is the flexibility it offers to employees. Instead of having to make regular analog telephone calls to and from their workstations, VoIP allows them to make digital data calls from their personal computers. Thus, employees can make a virtual visit to the company’s premises, submit a request for information or transfer a paper document by simply making a phone call to the company’s VoIP telephone number.
A VoIP service provider would have to offer robust features that can be used with the internet connection to allow an IP phone user to make a phone call even when the internet is disabled. The most common feature that must be included in a VoIP service is voice mail. However, it should also include other features like RTP (Real-time Transport Protocol), which allows users to send faxes, take phone messages, forward fax messages to other email addresses, and play MP3 audio files.
The use of VoIP with the internet has become so popular that some major firms are now offering full-featured VoIP service along with their telephone network. For example, Cisco is currently working on integrating VoIP with its network. Microsoft is also planning to integrate VoIP with its Xbox. VoIP is bound to gain more popularity as time goes by since it allows people to utilize their traditional telephone system while accessing broadband-based voice and data at the same time.
The primary advantage of VoIP over regular phone services is its voice quality. Unlike a regular telephone network, which can experience delays due to traffic, VoIP does not suffer from such problems. That is because it is based on real-time communication and transmission technologies. As such, it provides excellent voice quality that is consistent throughout a given area. The increased speed of internet access makes this even more important for many users.
One feature that most people think of first is caller ID or seeing who is calling, but there are other benefits as well. Some internet providers offer ” Caller ID blocking”, which is a means of limiting or blocking particular numbers from being able to register with your phone. In much the same way, there is also what is known as a “golden unified much like” (GUI) tool. With this feature, the user is presented with a list of all the numbers he has dialed, and as he chooses a certain number, it is automatically blocked from being dialed again or called from an unknown number.
Internet phone calls are thus, very useful when used in conjunction with the proper set of software. For instance, if you are in a conference, and want to share the same phone number with several members of the conference, then it would be a wise idea to create a “common name” account with which to communicate. This way, even if one of the computer ends up in a bad connection, the others will still have good reception. It would also be helpful to keep a log of all phone calls that pass through your computer. These logs will make it easier for you to review them later should the need arise. As you can see, there are many advantages to making use of internet phone calls, whether they are for business or personal reasons.