Internet telephony for beginners
Each user of the World Wide Web has repeatedly wondered how you can call free of charge or at a very low price via the Internet. Many honestly looked through dozens or even hundreds of offers from various companies offering Internet call services. But from a wide variety of confusion it became even more. Internet calls are inexpensivePiotr Marcinski, Shutterstock.com Not long ago, I had a similar problem. Having settled on a new job, I was forced to make a huge number of calls not only outside the city, but also outside our country. The usual telephone connection (and even more so cellular) did not fit the business, because my salary would not have covered the expenses for it, and I was simply forced to look for an alternative solution. And I must say, I found it! True, the path to it was through the thorns of delusions and prejudices that inevitably stand in the way of people moving towards their goal. Without going into the wilds of high information technology, you need to still mention what the Internet telephony is in technical terms. The correct name for voice communication via the Internet is VoIP telephony (from English Voice over Internet Protocol – literally, voice via Internet protocol), but don’t let this name scare you, just remember it, it will be easier to navigate the literature on this issue. The general scheme for making calls via VoIP telephony is as follows: as a user, you choose your VoIP provider (a company that provides VoIP telephony services), then install special software on your computer, configure it, and voila – you can Call anywhere in the world at very low prices. I will not dwell on the process of registering with providers and, moreover, setting up software; for confident Internet users, it’s not difficult, just wander around the VoIP provider site carefully. The purpose of my article is to dispel the most common myths and break the established stereotypes of most Internet users just starting to study the issue of making inexpensive calls over the Internet. Myth 1. VoIP telephony is always free. My answer is no. In our life, little is left free, and Internet telephony is definitely not on this list. Most service providers claim in the brochures and on their websites that the calls are free, but in fact the call will be free only from computer to computer, provided that both users have the same provider! That is, if you and your friend have the same provider, only then you will communicate for free, and then – you can only call from computer to computer. If you want to call from your computer to a landline or mobile phone, you will have to fork out according to the tariffs! Myth 2. Prices for calls from computer to phones are not too different from the offers of mobile operators. My answer: there are differences, and significant ones! Call the support of your mobile operator and ask about the cost of a call from your mobile phone, let’s say, in the United States. Impressed by the figure in one minute? And if you need to talk for an hour? And now let’s take a look at the price of one of the VoIP communication operators (comtube.com): the price of a minute of conversation is from 18 kopecks to 35 kopecks, depending on the state! There is a difference? Of course. You just need not be lazy and look for an operator with favorable rates for the desired direction. Myth 3. Skype taxis! Again, the answer is no! Of course, Skype has a huge number of advantages (and the quality of data transmission, the ability to make video calls, and a large reach of the client audience, etc.), but the price of calls to mobile or landline phones is definitely not the lowest. In order to be convinced of this, let’s compare the tariffs for calls to mobile or landline phones from Skype and the wonderful Russian operator sipnet.ru. Perceptible? Not that word! Myth 4. The quality of voice transmission is low. Three years ago, this question could definitely be answered “yes”, but the technologies are not standing still, and now most of the providers have excellent call quality! And, naturally, the more expensive the tariff, the better the quality. Myth 5. You can call via the Internet only if you are connected to the Internet. I hasten to please: if there is no Internet, you can still make cheap calls (and even need to)! The fact is that many providers provide SMS call order service. Let’s say you walk down the street and decide to call a friend in Germany. They wrote a message to a special short number, indicating in it the phone number of the friend you want to call, and in a couple of seconds the provider’s server calls you. You answer and wait for the connection with a friend! And then enjoy the communication. But note that in this case the cost of calls will increase slightly, since in fact the server makes two calls: one to you and the second to a friend in Germany to connect you. Myth 6. VoIP-telephony is too complicated! Not at all!