For over 100 years people have been plugging in their telephones. Now, the new millennium has brought with it a change in how people communicate. Globally, people are opting to get unplugged.
Homes are becoming modern technological breeding grounds for innovative trends and ideas. Every day, increasing amounts of people are embracing new technology worldwide. With computers in more and more homes, exposure is spreading to new ways to do old things. One of these is the way people talk on the telephone.
Standard telephone service is comprised of Circuit Switching Networks. This is also known as the PSTN or the Public Switched Telephone Network. From Alexander Graham Bell to the latter part of the 1900's no one expected it to become anything else. But it has, not only has the way people communicate changed, but the very infrastructure of the beloved telephone system is facing a major challenge.
People are pulling their plugs and opting for wireless telephones. You may be saying, 'Ok, so this is about cellular phones.' Not quite, but close guess. Actually people are pulling the plugs for VoIP.
VoIP stands for Voice over Internet Protocol. It is the technology that has enabled millions of users to communicate over their Internet connections as they would their standard telephones.
VoIP began as free software applications available on the Internet during the latter part of the 90's. Since then it has evolved into a force that is redefining telephony, telecommunications, and the very nature of US government programs such as 911 and how the FBI can trace phone calls.
Not many VoIP services are available for free download on the Internet anymore. However, there is one, Ad Calls. In exchange for viewing ads, one can make free long distance and local calls using their Internet connection. You won't be able to talk longer than ten minutes at a time, and you won't be able to call 911 or toll free numbers, but Ad Calls will give you a glimpse of what VoIP has to offer.
If you would like to experience another form of VoIP, try downloading any of the major Instant Messaging programs. Again, these programs are free to download and free to use. They are now combined with VoIP technology and you can use Yahoo Messenger, ICQ, AOL, MSN, and even a new messenger designed by Google to call your friends and family. They will have to be on the same program as you, and you will need a computer microphone and speakers to be able to transfer and hear audio.
Skype was one of the first leading programs that introduced consumers to the arena of VoIP. Today, Skype is free from Skype user to user. For a monthly fee you can upgrade your Skype and experience full telephony capabilities.
Since VoIP has become increasingly in demand and has gained popularity, there are now service providers who will replace your standard telephone network with their VoIP services and products. Vonage is one of the most famous VoIP service providers but there are countless others. They all have different rates, different plans, various features, and different deals. To find the VoIP service provider that is right for you, you will need to compare different plans.
Though there are still some issues being worked out with VoIP, the future points to the fact that people want to pull the plugs and become freer and more flexible. They want a service that is integrated, cost effective, and will increase productivity. People enjoy saving money on long distance calls and the benefits that they gain from switching to VoIP.
Though VoIP is redefining the way Americans look at telephones, many of the PSTN service provides are waking up to the fact that this is where the future is headed. Verizon has started their new Voice Wing plan, which is VoIP, and Cingular Wireless has started the release of Wireless VoIP phones (known as VoWiFi). When you see major corporations embracing new technology that's very foundation is contrary to their standard model, that is evidence that VoIP is a major contender when it comes to new telephony services.
VoIP is here to stay. As long as there are computers, broadband, and High Speed Internet access, there will be pc-to-pc calls as well as VoIP calls
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