Voip - a Basic Introduction

By: Sacha Tarkovsky

Voice over IP (VoIP) technology, or IP telephony, is simply a system for transmitting telephone calls over data networks, such as the ones that make up the Internet.

The efficiency, flexibility and cost savings of VoIP will be taken advantage of by a growing number of personal and corporate users.

In this report we will look at the history, growth, flexibility and advantages of VoIP based systems over traditional public switched networks, (PSDN)

Let's look at why VoIP will change the way we communicate forever.

The Disadvantages Of Traditional PSDN Networks

With PSDN calls are made using circuit switching techniques.

PSDN simply means that an individual call uses a dedicated path for the total duration of the call.

During a telephone conversation of this nature only about 50% of the bandwidth is used at any given time.

The reason for this is a call consists normally of two people, one person listens and one person talks, which reduces the bandwidth.

This is further reduced as there are natural pauses in conversation such as pauses between words, people thinking, pauses for breath etc. The connection is of course reliable for voice transmission, but its drawback is that, it is very inefficient in its use of bandwidth.

This has kept telephone costs relatively high until now, but VoIP provides the solution:

A more efficient use of bandwidth.

The Advantages Of VoIP

Voice over IP, (VoIP), is a way of converting the analogue signals when using a phone, to a digital format (across a network) and then back into analogue when it reaches the receiver.

In a VoIP network, digitized voice data is highly compressed and carried in packets over the IP network.

Using the same bandwidth, a VoIP network can carry many times the number of voice calls as a switched circuit PSDN network.

The net result of this obvious.

VoIP can result in huge savings on the amount of physical resources required to communicate by voice over long distances. It does so by providing a far more efficient use of bandwidth, one of the fundamental drawbacks of traditional telephone networks.

There is of course, much more to VoIP than just sending the packets over the Internet.

There is an agreed protocol for how computers find each other and how information is exchanged in order to allow packets to flow between users, there is also an agreed format, (called payload format), which covers the content of media packets.

VoIP A Total Global Telephony Solution

VoIP allows us to use a single high-speed Internet connection not just for voice but, video, and data communications.

This is known as convergence and is one of the primary drivers for corporate interest in the technology.

The benefits of convergence are obvious:

By using a single data network for all communications, it is possible to reduce overall costs of communication for users.

A VoIP service provider can be located anywhere in the world; a person with Internet access is not geographically restricted in their selection of VoiP service providers.

Lower costs for you and everyone

This competition enables low communication costs for anyone no matter where they are in the world.

VOIP
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