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Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) is the technology that
allows you to make phone calls with the use of your home or
office computer network. VoIP runs over a linked data
network just as the Internet does. The voice signal from
your phone is converted by this VoIP technology into a
signal that is digitized to travel by Internet. It then is
converted back to telephone technology so that a regular
phone conversation is possible with any standard telephone
number. When you place a phone call by VoIP using your
standard phone with a VoIP adapter you hear a regular dial
tone and you dial just as if it were a regular call over
your telephone line. With VoIP you are sometimes able to
call right from your computer using a conventional
microphone or telephone.

There are two options for calling by VoIP. The first is to
install an adaptor to your broadband Internet connection.
This way the call would actually go through your local phone
carrier to a provider of VoIP. The call goes out over the
Internet to the local phone carrier of the person you are
calling to have the call completed. Another way you can use
VoIP is to plug a headset with microphone into your PC or
laptop and then dial from your keyboard and route it through
your cable modem. To get your VoIP telephone connection
active you'll need the use of a cable modem or other high-
speed connection such as local area network or DSL. You can
directly connect a telephone directly to the phone adaptor
or buy an inexpensive microphone and hook it up directly to
the computer.

VoIP price isn't regulated, and as such varies by provider.
You might end up with a provider that offers free service
among its customers, or an area code of your choosing so
that calls outside your local carrier's designated area will
avoid a long distance charge. The drawback, of course, is
that if this offer extends to only one area code of your
choice you may end up affecting the cost to others that have
been calling you local.

The choices in VoIP charge options could be those that
charge for long distance as you're used to with your local
carrier and long distance carrier and those that offer you a
monthly rate for a chosen set of minutes to call anywhere
you like. The VoIP provider you select is the determinant
for whom you can call. You might make calls to others who
are that provider's clients as well, or you might dial
anywhere in the world to anyone you'd like. You could just
as easily call a call phone as a home or business phone.
Conference calls are a possibility as well. What's nice
about VoIP is that you're the only one that needs to set up
the system. Your recipient needs to do nothing but answer
her or his phone.

Because of the digitization of VoIP it offers some things
that standard phones don't. If you have broadband for your
Web connection then you get to save the money that you have
been spending on your phone line and service. What's good
about VoIP is that it can save you phone service costs as
well as long distance fees. What's bad about it is that you
might not be able to make a call if the power goes out and
you might not be able to call 911. Directory assistance and
the standard residential and business white page listings
might not be offered either.


Newton Meckley is the webmaster of Mico Voip which is an excellent place to find voip links, resources and articles. For more information on this article, please visit: http://www.micovoip.com/

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