VoIP ServiceMinimum Cost (Domestic)Unlimited Domestic Minutes CostMinimum Cost (World)Setup FeeCancel FeeFree Intl Minutes/MoAllow Conference CallingCustomer Rating
RingCentral$24.99$24.99N/ANoneNoneN/AYes97%
Call handling rules make it easy to route calls according to hours of operation, department responsibilities, events, worker schedules, Caller ID and other vital criteria.
Broadvoice$8.33$19.95$19.95None$9960Yes95%
Keep your existing number. No hidden fees or charges. 30-Day money back guarantee. Start saving today with Broadvoice.
VOIP.com$12.50$19.95$24.95None$9960Yes94%
VOIP.com provides phone service to single-line residential customers all the way to large corporate call centers.
8x8$24.99variesvaries$29$59variesYes87%
Secure, flexible, and reliable Voip service that is trusted by 40,000 companies worldwide. Sign up at 8x8 today.
Vonage$12.99$25.99$27.99$9.99$60NoneNo85%
Get free in-network calls to Vonage residential and business customers.

All of the above Voip services offer a month-to-month plan, business plans, allow you to choose your area code, and have a mobile app (that allows you to make calls through the service using your smartphone or tablet).

Internet Phone Service

internet-phoneThe days of land lines are quickly moving behind us as the world moves over to internet phone service, otherwise known as Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP). This method of making phone calls utilizes the internet rather than the phone line you are used to using in your home. VoIP phone service is available in a variety of methods including talking via your computer, using a specific phone meant for VoIP or using your “regular” home phone along with an adaptor to utilize the VoIP service. It has proven to be a more effective and cost efficient use of today’s technology, enabling many people to save large amounts of money on their phone bill each month. VoIP does not charge long distance charges or restrict you to calling certain areas on your local calling plan. It is the same for you to call your neighbor down the street as it is to call someone a few states away. Many companies are moving towards internet phone service and it will not be long before every phone company makes the switch.

What you Need to Utilize VoIP Phone Service

In order to use internet phone service, you will need a computer with high speed internet, which typically means cable or DSL internet service as they provide the fastest service. In addition, you will need a microphone for your computer or a specific VoIP phone that can plug directly into your internet modem. If you are going to be using your computer to make the phone calls, you will need to install simple software in order to make the calls. If you are using a VoIP specific phone or an adaptor with your traditional phone, you will make the phone calls just like you would with your land line. The process is simple to get started and can save you a lot of money in the long run.

How VoIP Transmits the Calls

It might seem like a mystery when you consider how your voice can travel over the internet and be heard on the other end of the phone, but it is possible. Even if you are making a call from an analog phone, the voice is transmitted as bits of data. This data is transferred from one end of the conversation to the other, just like you send emails or instant messages. It does not matter what type of phone you call or what type of phone you use on your connection, the data is transferred and the call quality is just as clear as if you were using your old landline phone.

The packets of data are what make VoIP so affordable as opposed to a traditional phone line. With your regular or analog phone, you have copper wires that go into use with every phone call that you make. These copper wires are in use on your end as well as the end of the person you are talking to, which means that you have an open connection the entire time you are talking and take that connection away from someone else during that time. With VoIP, there are no copper wires; instead, there are fiber optic cables that transmit data. It is not a continuous connection that you experience, as you would with a traditional phone, instead every time you or the person you are talking to “makes noise” or otherwise talks, the data packets are sent. If no one is talking, which is the case for a large part of many conversations as you wait for the other person to talk, no data is being used. This greatly reduces the usage of the connection, making it much more affordable than a traditional phone line.



VoIP Makes Calls more Efficient

Because VoIP service uses packet switching as opposed to copper lines, the entire process is more efficient. The data that is exchanged between the two phones is greatly compacted, which means that several other phone calls can occur in the same space that would have been required for one analog phone call. In addition, digital phone calls are compressed, which allows them to take up even less space. The bottom line is that a more efficient system means lower costs for everyone involved.

How the Analog Telephone Adaptor Works

If you wish to use VoIP with your traditional phone, you will need an Analog Telephone Adaptor, or ATA. This little adaptor converts analog signals into digital signals, which allows your conversation to be passed over the internet. An ATA is very simple to use as it is just a plug that you insert your phone plug into, rather than plugging it into the wall. Once this step is complete, you are ready to make phone calls over the internet. Some companies may require you to install simple software onto your computer to get the process started, but it is typically a very simple installation that anyone can do. This makes it very easy to turn any phone into an internet phone in a matter of minutes.

What are IP Phones?

IP phones are another way that you can make VoIP phone calls. These phones look similar to your traditional phone, yet instead of a standard phone connector that would plug into your wall, you will have Ethernet connectors. These Ethernet connectors then plug into your modem or router and are then ready to use. These phones do not require any software to be installed because they are directly connected to the router. All that you have to do is pick up the phone and dial the number. Some IP phones allow you to make phone calls outside of your home as long as there is a Wi-Fi internet available which is another added bonus of this service.

Talking Computer to Computer

Using the computer to talk was one of the original ways that VoIP was used. This is the truly free way to talk to someone, no matter how far away they may be. There are no long distance charges or toll fees as you would incur on your analog telephone line. In order to talk computer to computer, you will need to set up your computer with the appropriate software and hardware. A microphone, speakers, soundcard and of course, internet connection can get you talking computer to computer.

Utilizing internet phone service is a great way to save money and utilize today’s latest technology. If you have a VoIP phone set up, you will not even have to worry about your computer being on as the phone connection runs off of your router, which remains on all of the time. You can even multitask and use your computer while talking on the phone. VoIP phone service has many benefits that make it well worth the time to find the program that is right for you. Even if you are not computer savvy, it only takes a matter of minutes to get your traditional phone set up as a VoIP phone, allowing you to have crystal clear conversations with anyone around the world. Whether you are a business man that travels or a homebody that needs a method of communication, VoIP can adapt to your needs, providing you with low cost communication wherever you go.