Internet Telephony

Broadband Telephone

A major development starting in 2004 has been the introduction of mass-market VoIP services over broadband Internet access services, in which subscribers make and receive calls as they would over the PSTN. Full phone service VoIP phone companies provide inbound and outbound calling with Direct Inbound Dialing. Many offer unlimited calling to the U.S., and some to Canada or selected countries in Europe or Asia as well, for a flat monthly fee.
These services take a wide variety of forms which can be more or less similar to traditional POTS. At one extreme, an Analog Telephone Adapter (ATA) may be connected to the broadband Internet connection and an existing telephone jack in order to provide service nearly indistinguishable from POTS on all the other jacks in the residence. This type of service, which is fixed to one location, is generally offered by broadband Internet providers such as cable companies and telephone companies as a cheaper flat-rate traditional phone service, as they require hook-up to a VoIP-server.
Dedicated VoIP phones are phones that allow VoIP calls without the use of a computer. Instead they connect directly to the broadband Internet connection (through WiFi or Ethernet). They require service from a VoIP-server, thus most people also use them in conjunction with a payed service plan.

Broadband Telephone Service: Getting Started

Alternately, software can be installed on a computer that allows (free) PC-to-PC calling, and usually PC-to-telephone calls and telephone to PC-calls as well. The latter two are usually payed services. The software/services are called "Softphones", "Internet Phones", or "Digital Phones". The service is aimed at typical phone users who are not necessarily tech-savvy. Typically, the provider touts the advantage of being able to port an existing phone number. Another advantage is the ability of having a fixed phone number, which you can move to any country or location.
This is especially useful for travelers. Some examples are the Gizmo Project and Skype which rely on a software client on the computer in order to place a call over the network, where one user account can be used on many different computers or in different locations on a laptop.
Finally, there are companies that allow one to make VoIP-calls using regular POTS telephones. This is done by typing it the number of the person you wish to call on-line (at the company's website).
The company then calls your phone, after which you pick up and the VoIP-connection is then made by the company between your POTS-phone and another POTS-phone. Companies providing these services include Jajah.
In the middle lie services which also provide a telephone adapter for connecting to the broadband connection similar to the services offered by broadband providers (and in some cases also allow direct connections of SIP phones) but which are aimed at a more tech-savvy user and allow portability from location to location.
One advantage of these two types of services is the ability to make and receive calls as one would at home, anywhere in the world, at no extra cost. No additional charges are incurred, as call diversion via the PSTN would, and the called party does not have to pay for the call. For example, if a subscriber with a home phone number in the U.S. or Canada calls someone else within his local calling area, it will be treated as a local call regardless of where that person is in the world. Often the user may elect to use someone else's area code as his own to minimize phone costs to a frequently called long-distance number.
For some users, the broadband phone complements, rather than replaces, a PSTN line, due to a number of inconveniences compared to traditional services. VoIP requires a broadband Internet connection and, if a telephone adapter is used, a power adapter is usually needed.
In the case of a power failure, VoIP services will generally not function without a backup power supply like a common UPS system used in most office buildings. Additionally, a call to an emergency services number may not automatically be routed to the nearest local emergency dispatch center.
Some VoIP providers only handle emergency call for one country. Some VoIP providers offer users the ability to register their address so that emergency services work as expected.

Broadband Internet connection

Use your broadband Internet connection as a regular phone line and get the same experience as a regular phone without any installation fees, waiting or hassle.
With broadband telephone services you can make and receive calls worldwide over your broadband Internet connection.
When you sign up for broadband telephone service with Computer Phone Call you can save on all your long-distance and international calls with our incredibly low broadband telephone service rates. To begin saving, just sign up for a broadband telephone calling plan.
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