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Overcoming The Disadvantages And Improving the Quality Of VoIP

Mar 19, 2008
VoIP is a great way to communicate with family and friends at a very low price. However, there are a variety of hindrances with switching to VoIP. This article goes over many of the disadvantages of VoIP, which may have experienced. Additionally, this article will explain how you can improve the quality of VoIP phone service.

Disadvantages of VoIP

Although there are many advantages of VoIP, there are also quite a few disadvantages. Below are four of the most common disadvantages of VoIP.

1. Maintaining a Dependable VoIP Internet Connection

If for any reason, you lose your internet connection, you will not have phone service. Therefore, you must use a cellular phone should this type of situation arise.

2. 911 Access

When you place a 911 call, the location cannot be immediately determined. Unlike PSTN, you must register your phone number online so that should you need to make a 911 call from your VoIP, emergency services will know your location.

3. Networks Have a Large Number of Computers Connected

If your network has a large quantity of computers connected and they are all using the internet at the same time, your VoIP quality will generally be less than desirable. One way to avoid this situation is to invest in an Ethernet.

4. VoIP Poor Quality

Audio quality is one of the largest issues. No matter what your VoIP service offers you, the basic role of any phone is voice communication. If the quality is not up to par, then there is absolutely no point to all of the bells and whistles that come with the service. If you have a lot of background noise, then a VoIP that can handle music, video, caller ID and a variety of other advanced features is practically useless. In the next section, we will address this issue more thoroughly.

Even with all of the advancements of VoIP, there are times when the audio quality suffers. Since VoIP relies completely on the internet connection, anytime the internet suffers so will the VoIP.

Six Ways to Improve the Quality of VoIP

Poor audio quality (disadvantage #4) along with dropped calls, are all complaints that user of VoIP tend to make. Below are six ways the setup of your VoIP can affect the overall quality. By following these simple steps, you can easily improve the quality of your VoIP service.

1. Internet Connection

One of the first recommendations is a high speed internet connection. There are companies which offer VoIP for dial up users. However, the connection can result in poor audio quality. Eventually, you will grow to dislike your VoIP. However, it is not the VoIP, but rather the internet connection. Even if you have DSL, there are occasions when the connection may be slow and your VoIP quality will suffer. Therefore, an Ethernet connection is highly recommended.

2. External Factors

Weather conditions, such as thunder storms, heavy rains and snowstorms can all can an increase in static on broadband lines. In some instances, simply turning rebooting the VoIP can solve the problem. Another solution to reduce the static is for the VoIP service provider to replace the cables with a higher quality cable.

3. Compression Software

The technical details of codecs are a bit too much for this article. If you would like additional information, you can go to Wikipedia. Here is a quick overview of codecs as it pertains to VoIP. When sending data, VoIP compresses it. This is simply because if the data is too large, transmission can be extremely slow and ineffective. Codec is a software program that can be used for data compression. However, a poor quality codec will lead to poor audio quality.

4. VoIP Location and Hardware

The hardware you choose for you VoIP can affect the audio quality. Most of the most important pieces of hardware is the ATA/Router. The VoIP ATA or Analog Telephone Adaptor, brings ordinary phones to the networked world. The adaptor connects a phone handset to an Ethernet adaptor and therefore connects regular, analog phones with VoIP networks. If you are looking for additional information on ATA, check out Wikipedia.

In general, ATAs should have support for security and firewall, as well as echo cancellation and compression technologies. Many technicians have discovered that certain VoIP equipment can interfere with each and possibly create feedback or buzzing noises and dropped calls. Although VoIP equipment and hardware should be places as close as possible to each other, ATA should not be placed near the broadband internet router. The audio quality can be decreased if they are placed too close together.

5. Computer Maintenance and Hardware

There are a variety of different things that can affect the quality of your VoIP service. Therefore, computer maintenance is extremely important in improving the service's quality. Make sure that you de-fragment your computer on a regular bases. As well, make sure that you have sufficient memory for the computer and high quality microphone and speakers.

6. VoIP Phone Type/Frequency

The type of phone you have, as well as the frequency can affect the quality of your VoIP. Many people believe that the higher a phone's frequency is, the better the quality of VoIP. However, in some instances, a lower frequency phone may fit your connection better. You may want to try a phone with a lower frequency if you are experiencing a lot of audio feedback.

Overall, VoIP is a great low cost alternative for communication. VoIP are not passing through, they are here to stay. Major corporations have done some significant research to fix the disadvantages of VoIP service, as well as improve the overall quality. With all of the improvements continually going on with VoIP, it will soon be accepted by everyone as an acceptable alternative to PSTN.
About the Author
Kevin Sinclair is the publisher and editor of Be Successful News , a site that provides information and articles on how to succeed in your own home or small business.
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