We’ve been working hard over the past few weeks to create a guide that will grow and evolve to cover every aspect of VoIP that consumers and businesses have questions about. As we were working to put it together, we realized just how broad of a topic VoIP is. We eventually had to create a stopping point with our guide in order to release it. (If you’re interested in downloading it, just enter your email into the box on the right).
We’ve now published our Ultimate Guide to VoIP – and we’re leaving it up to the community to let us know what needs to be added.
So to get things started – we’re going to cover a part of our first section in our guide “What is VoIP?”.
What does VoIP Stand For?
VoIP is an acronym for Voice Over Internet Protocol. Internet Protocol (IP) is the set of rules that govern much of the way our internet works. Therefor, in a high level understanding, VoIP can stand for Voice Over The Internet. However, the Internet Protocol isn’t exclusively used for the internet alone. IP also allows our computers to communicate with each other on internal networks. When you send a document to the printer, the computer uses the Internet Protocol to communicate with that printer.
So, in essence, VoIP represents any Voice communication sent over a network that uses the Internet Protocol to communicate.
How does VoIP Work?
When we speak, our voices send out sound waves as vibrations through the air. In order to send that sound across an IP Network (Public internet or Private LAN) we need to have a way to convert that sound into Data Packets.
To do this we need some sort of converter device: normally this is either an IP Phone, smartphone, or your computer with VoIP Software installed on it. That converter device takes your sound waves, breaks them down into small data packets, and then forwards them across the IP Network. At the other end, another converter device takes those packets and reconstructs them into a sound wave and plays it through a speaker.
That’s the foundation of what VoIP is. There are a lot of other components to implementing VoIP, such as:
- Cloud based VoIP
- Computer to Computer
- Managed VoIP
- How to Purchase VoIP
Our guide covers the basics of all of these different components – if you’re interested in more, just submit your email to the right. There are even a couple of handy checklists at the end of the guide to help you in your purchasing decision.