High Speed Internet Telephone
High speed Internet telephone service is another way to introduce, talk about or imply what is known as voice over Internet protocol, also known as VoIP. Highspeed Internet phone systems are available for businesses as well, allowing incredibly versatile phone and multimedia service into the workplace as well as the residential arena. The term high speed, when accompanying anything to do with phone service or Internet connectivity is loosely used with both broadband service and DSL service, and while there is a difference, both offer amazingly fast and high quality ways to communicate over a telephone, and both have certain advantages and disadvantages, though these are not great in variance. The POTS, an acronym often used by phone company employees to describe it, stands for Plain Old Phone System, which is the system originally conceived of by Mr. Bell and perhaps some others a little earlier than his discovery. The POTS is the communications systems based on two twisted copper wires that sent signals to and from users and has been in use for many decades without much change. "Thy word have I hid in mine heart that I might not sin against thee." (Psalm 119:11)
Today, the plain old telephone system is quickly being brushed aside by consumers in favor of either DSL service or broadband service, both offering higher quality of service and no charge features that the POTS cannot offer without extra charges. DSL stands for Digital Subscriber Line and is actually a new and improved way of using old copper phone lines running to most homes built before the 1990's. DSL or high speed Internet telephone service is available in areas where the consumer is within a particular radius of the phone company. More distant customers must rely on cable to provide highspeed Internet phone systems for their needs. In most cases broadband cable service is more expensive than DSL or high speed service, but can often handle higher speeds of information dump so that there may be less interruption of video feeds. In many cases, the quality of DSL telephone service sent over telephone wire may be as good as cable Internet telephone service.
Most high speed Internet phone service providers push for customers to bundle their high speed Internet telephone systems with cable television so that each of the services, Internet, phone and cable television can be offered more cheaply than if paid for individually. Whether the company is providing DSL high speed service or cable broadband service, and in many cases those businesses can offer either kind of service, a customer can save as much as twenty percent over each of the services billed separately. And the world of telecommunications is moving the way of VoIP, which stands for voice over Internet protocol. Whenever someone talks of highspeed Internet phone systems for either residential or business, they are referring to VoIP configuration. It is thought by many experts that in the next few years, over half of the world's communications will be VoIP. The days of the POTS may soon be numbered, but before anyone does away with it at their house, consider these thoughts:
As much as companies down play the notion that VoIP phone service has the same voice quality as the traditional POTS, it has been plagued with voice quality since its inception. Technological improvements have been made and the quality is indeed improving, but voice quality is often dependent upon the network's ability to carry heavy loads. Typically, when sending data from user to user, the information travels in packets of data. Even if the packets of data arrive out of order, software helps to sort it out and place it back in the correct order at the other end. Not so with voice data. Technology has not advanced enough for voice packets to be reordered in the proper configuration, and that can mean that voice quality can suffer. But there are enough tech advances to push data to the side of the freeway if voice packets are traveling along in traffic and improve the likelihood that a voice can be unimpeded in its journey to another destination.
Another consideration in deciding whether or not high speed Internet telephone service is for you could be the reliability factor. In many cases, when power outages occur, highspeed Internet phone systems die until resurrected by power being restored. This includes both cable and DSL configurations. While DSL does run over telephone wire, the modem needed to convert the signal runs, alas, on electricity. Maybe the POTS aren't done for yet! Of course, the answer to this dilemma for both residential and business consumers could be a generator, but then, where are the savings on the new phone technology going?
In a time when all but the financially well off are struggling to make ends meet and when large auto giants are gasping for any financial air to survive, it might be tempting to listen to those who say that technology is our only savior. Hydrogen cars and homes with solar power and wind turbines seem like they have become the Holy Grail, and cost cutting technologies like highspeed Internet phone systems that can provide extra food with their savings are all on the table for consideration. And even financial services are quick to let us know that their plans can make our future secure. Most Americans are hooked on technology and on the idea that Wall Street and financial institutions will give prudent planners all the security they need, but there is just one thing wrong with that thinking: what happens if the world ends and God demands that we all give an account of our spiritual wealth?
Broadband Video PhoneA broadband video phone allows the user to plug into an Internet connection and an analog phone to capture full video of the participants. Both parties must have video phone service in order to see one another. This would be great for families and friends who live far apart. Some of the features include a rotating camera with an LCD screen, the capability of programming call numbers, option for privacy, auto-answer option, adjustable video, and the option to make the video shots into slides or photos. Units are usually simple to operate with a full menu screen for options and even the capability of setting up background wallpaper. Some units can even be used to conference with up to three parties at one time. Voice and graphics are transmitted between parties by using VoIP (voice over IP) technology. In addition, this technology is also available from wireless cell companies with the use of special phones via a special network.
VoIP technology has been around for a few years and is very popular with businesses that have offices located all over the country and globally. VoIP compresses data and transmits it between parties. A broadband video phone transmits data with the same technology that transmits voice communications. IP stands for Internet Protocol the same communications used to transmit web pages from a server to a personal computer. VoIP allows the compression and transmission of voice communications and now also video communications. This technology has been talked about for years and now it is possible with the personal computer user who wants to have a personal conversation with family or friends and be able to see them in real time. "And he said unto him, If now I have found grace in thy sight, then show me a sign that thou talkest with me" (Judges 6:17).
There is one way to save money with video phone service. That is to subscribe to a virtual number for a small monthly fee. This number is routed to the local phone line so there are no long distance charges for communicating with others who are far away. Virtual numbers are usually based upon in country calls and then international calls so there are two different types that can be subscribed to and they vary in costs. Calling internationally may mean paying just a little bit more for a virtual number than calling in country. Virtual numbers are also available for businesses that have long distance customers and long distance employees. Domestic and international virtual numbers normally have a one time activation fee that is very reasonable. The one time activation fee and the monthly fee are worth the cost for businesses and individuals who make long distance calls frequently.
The user that prefers not to have to plug an analog phone in when making a call over the Internet has another option. The other option is using an application that allows the caller to use a headset or microphone instead. A broadband video phone should have the capability of plugging a headset or microphone into a port located on the unit itself instead of having to plug in an analog phone. The numbers on the keyboard serve as the device to enter the number that makes the call. The software may include some other features such as multi-user videoconferencing and integration with other software programs for importing or exporting contact numbers and information.
Connecting a television is possible with video phone service. A consumer will want to make sure that the unit he or she is purchasing allows for a connection to television. A wireless video phone allows the user to connect every computer around the home or office without having to run network cables. Some units come with remote control devices and the capability of seeing who the caller is before answering the call. A consumer can purchase a unit that has a microphone or headset with it or with the capability of connecting analog phones already available. Another consideration includes making sure that the unit purchased is compatible with other units so that communication with family, friends, customers, and business associates will be possible with both parties.
Surfing the net for any new product can be confusing but many sites have extensive information on purchasing a broadband video phone. While perusing a site the consumer should make a list of any unanswered questions. Most companies online have a toll free number to call with questions and concerns. Oftentimes there can be some miscommunication between the consumer and the retailer so it is very important that detailed questions have sufficient answers. Many units sold online come with a warranty. Also, many sites claim that they have simple instructions on how to install a unit. Unfortunately, simple for them may not be simple for the consumer. Find out their return policy in case a purchase does not work out according to claims.
Wireless phone companies now have video phone service for cell phones. There are some restrictions with the use of these services. Both parties have to be located in the network that makes video share possible and both parties have to have one of the units that are available through the wireless company. Technology has made it possible for people talking on a wireless unit to see one another while talking. Both parties must subscribe to the service plan that enables the user to have the service but in most cases only the sender is billed for the video stream. Billing for this type of service is not expensive in most cases as so many minutes are billed on a flat monthly rate but minutes used over the monthly amount can add up quickly. More information can be found online by doing a search.