An Analysis of VoIP as a Viable Alternative to Traditional Phone Service
VoIP or Voice over Internet Protocol is a service that emulates the numerous aspects of traditional telephone service and transmits digitally encoded audio signals over the Internet. The internal workings of the system are similar to that of public switched telephone networks and utilize many of the same fundamental properties such as digital audio encoding, channel initialization, and signaling. VoIP also allows for its users to communicate with each other using differing types of equipment, for example, between a computer with a built in microphone and a traditional telephone. The service utilizes session control in order to manage the numerous logistical operations of the VoIP such as signaling. VoIP has many benefits that include improved audio fidelity over traditional phone service, inexpensive service charges, and enhanced 911 abilities. Due to the numerous benefits of VoIP, many organizations are transitioning to the service to satisfy their telephonic needs as it can replace traditional PSTN phones while enhancing a number of telephonic services.
There are three types of VoIP that are typically utilized in the current telephonic market; IP phones, computer-based, and analog telephone adaptors. IP phones are designed to mimic the functionality of a traditional phone to an almost exacting degree, the only differences being that IP phones utilize the Internet Protocol and provide enhanced features. These phones often use the RJ-45 Ethernet standard over the usual RJ-11 standard and can be easily deployed in a building that are often already wired with RJ-45 connections. The requirements of this type of VoIP are that the site must be adequately outfitted with RJ-45 connections and the IP phones themselves. This type of VoIP is often used in the corporate world as its functionality most closely resembles that of a PSTN telephone and for this reason, is simple for users to migrate to. IP phones are often the most expensive VoIP service to deploy as it requires that all traditional telephones be replaced.
The second type of VoIP is computer-based and as the name suggests, this type of VoIP utilizes various personal computing platforms to facilitate telephony. This approach requires little to no additional equipment as the vast majority of businesses and users already have computers that are capable of utilizing this type of VoIP. The only requirements the computer must meet are that it has a relatively recent operating system, that it has a microphone and audio output device installed, and that it has broadband Internet access. There are many free and inexpensive software applications such as Skype which makes this type of VoIP the most inexpensive option. Although this option is attractive for its minimal cost and ease of deployment, many users are apprehensive to making phone calls on a computer for various reasons.
Another popular implementation of VoIP is...