Today, people have many ways to make phone calls. With advanced technologies, there are a growing number of possibilities to get free calls or low-cost phone calls. VoIP led to a growing number of options for connecting with people, and, as polls confirm, the use of VoIP technologies is growing worldwide.
VoIP (voice over Internet protocol) has been around for a while and is still growing in popularity. VoIP is a large group of technologies that make it possible to communicate using the computer. The calls are free (with free VoIP software) because you don't need a phone company service. The VoIP technology takes analog signals and turns them into digital information that is then transmitted over the Internet. You can buy an IP phone that has an Ethernet connector to make calls or you can use free software that lets you make calls using a microphone, headset, speakers, and broadband connection.
A SIP (session initiation protocol) phone is just one of the many VoIP technologies available. With SIP technology, you have two choices for phone service. You can buy a soft phone that resembles a traditional telephone. However, on the inside the phone uses hardware that makes it possible to send and receive phone calls over the Internet. These phones can do this by connecting to a data network rather than to a landline. The phone shares the network connection with the computer.
The second type of SIP technology uses software instead. With the software, you can use a computer like a phone. To make and receive calls, in addition to the SIP software, you also need an Internet connection, and a subscription to a VoIP or SIP service provider. You can use the speakers and microphone that come with most computers or you can buy a headset that attaches to the computer. Another innovation is the use of a browser and flash technology to make SIP phone calls. However, these are advanced techniques and not as popular as the other approaches.
You can also make and receive calls online with your normal corded or cordless landline phone. However, you need to purchase an ATA (analog telephone adapter.) With the adapter, you need to make a few simple connections. You have to plug the Ethernet jack into the adapter, and plug the phone line into the adapter. These connections make the phone appear to be a SIP phone to the VoIP system.
According to one recent poll, 46% use VoIP/SIP to talk with family and friends in other countries, while 31% use the technology to call nationally. Fourteen percent use VoIP/SIP to call home when they are abroad. Unfortunately, it is difficult to accurately estimate how many people are actually using the various VoIP or SIP methods because the definition of these two technologies overlaps. The only thing that telecommunication experts can agree on is that the use of the VoIP and SIP technologies is increasing at a rapid rate annually in terms of subscribes.
The trend of online phone calls is growing steadily. People are taking advantage of the new technologies that make it easier and cheaper to connect with others all over the world. As the options increase, so do the number of people using the VoIP technologies.