Computer Phone Calls

Written by Kevin Tavolaro
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The Internet has made it possible to place free long distance calls without ever picking up a phone. In the last several years, PC-to-PC phone calls have become an increasingly popular, cost-efficient alternative to expensive long distance services. New technology now makes it possible to use your Internet connection to make and receive calls with your existing landline, without having to pay high long distance fees. There are several different types of services currently available.

Computer phone calls are enabled through the use of a system known as "Voice over Internet Protocol" or "VoIP" for short. VoIP is a process for converting audio readings of a human voice into digital information data packets, which can then be transferred from one PC to another via the Internet. Basically, your computer receives your voice through a microphone, converts it into digital data, and transmits it to another computer, just as it would do with email or other data transmissions. When the digital audio packets are received by the other computer, they can be broadcast via that computer's speakers or headphones. Due to the high volume of data and need for rapid exchange during a VoIP interaction, computer phone calls require a hi-speed online connection in order to go smoothly.

Advances in Computer Phone Calls

While computer phone calls used to be made using a headset and microphone attached to a PC, new technology allows the experience to more closely approximate traditional phone calls. Thanks to VoIP, new adapters can patch your existing telephone line into your hi-speed Internet connection. With the right equipment you can now place free computer phone calls simply by dialing out from your home phone. These adapters sometimes require a monthly service fee, but the cost covers unlimited long distance calls at any time.

VoIP mobile telephone adapters offer a number of potential benefits, especially to business professionals. The adapters can be easily installed anywhere there is a hi-speed Internet connection, and can be just as easily removed and transferred. If you use a VoIP adapter as your office phone, for example, you can bring it with you on a business trip and attach it to the hi-speed connection in your hotel room. As a result, you not only get to place free telephone calls from the road, but you can receive them as well. Your incoming number remains the same, no matter where your adapter is installed, allowing you to be reached at all times. Features such as voicemail and caller ID will also continue to work.

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