Embracing VoIP: Your guide to the future of communication
Welcome to the world of VoIP – Voice over Internet Protocol. It's more than just a mouthful; it's a game-changer in how we make phone calls. In this blog, we're here to demystify VoIP, share its history, and help you understand why it's shaking up the world of communication.
So, what exactly is VoIP?
VoIP, or Voice over Internet Protocol, is like traditional telephony's cool, digital cousin. It ditches the old copper wires in favour of broadband internet connections. But here's the cool part: VoIP lets you make calls not only on regular phones but also on laptops, smartphones – basically anything connected to the internet. Plus, it's becoming even more essential with the Wholesale Line Rental (WLR) switch-off looming on the horizon in 2025.
Saying goodbye to copper, Hello to digital
As we wave goodbye to the old copper telephone network, we're diving headfirst into a digital future for communication. The days of ISDN (Integrated Service Digital Network) are numbered, and the retirement of the Public Switched Telephone Network (PSTN) is set for 2025. In its place, VoIP steps up, offering a world of possibilities.
A peek into VoIP's roots
VoIP's journey began in the '70s, with pioneers in California and Massachusetts conducting the first-ever real-time conversation. Fast forward to 1995, and the "Internet Phone" was born. VoIP opened up the world of internet-based calls, making international conversations cheaper and enabling cross-device communication.
Why VoIP is the future
VoIP isn't just a buzzword; it's a game-changer. It's cost-effective, requiring no extra hardware, and it's packed with advanced call management features. You can make and receive calls on all sorts of devices, from your trusty desk phone to your ever-present smartphone. It's no wonder that the global VoIP market is predicted to reach a whopping $102.5 billion by 2026!
How do VoIP phones actually work?
Ever wondered how your voice travels through the internet? VoIP works its magic by converting your voice into digital data packets. These packets are compressed (using something called codecs), zipped through the internet to reach their destination, and then uncompressed for your caller to hear your crystal-clear voice.
What makes VoIP truly ground-breaking is how a range of devices can be used with a VoIP phone system. These devices include:
A regular old landline phone with a special VoIP adapter that plugs into a wall socket or the router directly (in case you want to keep things retro)
VoIP phone sets, which work like a regular phone but plug into an internet router rather, allowing users to handle IP calls from a traditional phone
A computer, where a software application acts as a telephone interface, which turns computers into a ‘softphone’ that resembles a traditional phone interface
A mobile phone, with only a data connection and the chosen app installed (this works in a similar vein to WhatsApp, Skype and other apps)
SIP Trunking and VoIP
Ever heard of SIP? It stands for Session Initiation Protocol. VoIP is a broad term for internet-based phone systems; SIP is a specific protocol that implements VoIP. While VoIP tends to focus solely on sending voice data over the internet, a SIP trunk can transfer numerous forms of data, including voice, video, and text messages. Thanks to the SIP protocol, the connections that help VoIP phone systems transfer their data packets can be created and terminated once the session is complete.
Unleashing VoIP's potential
Brace yourself because implementing a VoIP telephone system can be a total game-changer for your business. Your phone number won't be chained to a desk; it can follow you wherever you roam – even to your home office. VoIP is like that reliable friend who's always there for you.
In a nutshell, VoIP is reshaping communication. It's a digital revolution, breaking the chains of old phone lines and offering fresh ways to collaborate. The future is here, and it's saying hello with a VoIP call!