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What is Voice Over IP?


Business Owner Using Voice Over IP (VoIP) from Schwalm Technologies in Camp Hill PA

Voice over Internet Protocol, also known as VoIP, is a technology that allows for the delivery of voice communications over an internet connection. In contrast to conventional telephone lines, VoIP can include the transmission of data and video in addition to voice calls. VoIP technology can work to connect to other VoIP phone systems and sometimes allow you to contact regular phone lines using a VoIP adapter.


How VoIP Works


When you call using Voice over Internet Protocol on an internet-connected device, your voice is converted into a digital signal transferred through the internet. You can use a computer or VoIP phone for this process, as well as a traditional phone that has been attached to a VoIP adapter. If you call a regular phone number from a VoIP device, the transmission is converted to a standard phone signal before connecting.


When exploring VoIP options, investigate if you will need special equipment for your service. Some VoIP services offer options that work with traditional phones using a VoIP adapter, and others require specific equipment from that service.


Benefits of Using VoIP


When a business implements a VoIP system rather than a traditional copper wire phone system, the benefits are abundant, including lower monthly costs and overall flexibility. Compared to traditional phone systems, VoIP can:

  • Include automatic redialing, caller ID features, and call forwarding in the plan, which would typically be costly add-ons in a traditional phone system

  • Include auto-attendant features to increase your customer service efforts and field calls to the correct people

  • Improve call quality with HD audio features

  • Add extensions regardless of location or internet-connected device

  • Utilize the office phone number to make and receive calls while traveling or out of the physical office location

  • Save money through lower call rates or free calls via an internet connection

  • Facilitate fax-to-email technology for more accessible fax communications

  • Transfer multiple phone calls through the system at the same time, allowing for easier scaling of the system for a growing business

  • Record certain types of phone calls for team training or monitoring purposes

  • Allow Unified Communications features like video conferencing and instant messaging for better team productivity

  • Protect confidential information like credit card numbers and sensitive information with call encryption

  • Reduce costs of having both a broadband internet connection and a traditional phone system


VoIP Precautions


If you are interested in using a VoIP system for your business, make sure your internet connection is strong and not prone to connectivity problems. Like any other internet-connected service, VoIP will not connect without an internet connection, and power outages will affect the ability to make calls. Because VoIP uses the internet to send and receive calls, it is also susceptible to cybersecurity threats, so it is essential to understand and prepare for those possibilities.


When looking for a VoIP provider, ask important questions to reinforce your decision, including questions regarding their accreditations, their amount of data centers, and their compliance protocols within your specific industry.


To learn more about Voice over Internet Protocol systems and how they can work for your business, click here.