Voice Over Internet Protocol (VoIP)
Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP), is a technology that allows you to make voice calls using a broadband Internet connection instead of a regular (or analog) phone line.
VoIP services convert your voice into a digital signal that travels over the Internet. If you are calling a regular phone number, the signal is converted to a regular telephone signal before it reaches the destination. VoIP can allow you to make a call directly from a computer, or a special VoIP phone.
What Kind of Equipment Do I Need?
A broadband (high speed Internet) connection is required. This can be through a cable modem or high-speed services such as DSL or a local area network. A computer, adaptor, or specialized phone is required. Some VoIP services only work over your computer or a special VoIP phone, while other services allow you to use a traditional phone connected to a VoIP adapter. If you use your computer, you will need some software and an inexpensive microphone. Special VoIP phones plug directly into your broadband connection and operate largely like a traditional telephone. If you use a telephone with a VoIP adapter, you’ll be able to dial just as you always have, and the service provider may also provide a dial tone.