Alternatively referred to as IP telephone or Internet phone, VoIP is short for Voice over Internet Protocol and is an Internet protocol that enables users to make calls over the Internet. To make a call a telephone is connected to a network cable, versus a standard phone line or a call is made over a computer. This enables long distant phone calls to be cheaper, although sometimes at a lower audio quality. The first experiment VoIP call was made in 1973 even though the first software known as "Vocaltec" that enabled end users to make calls did not appear until 1995.
Today, VoIP and Internet phones are becoming commonplace. Many cable TV providers offer bundles that include VoIP, allowing customers to take advantage of the Internet phone technology. Businesses have begun to embracing the change and utilize VoIP as well, nearly eliminating the need for telephone lines in the work place. While telephone lines are not completely gone, technology is moving things in that direction and it may not be long before the Internet phone, and the cell phone are the remaining two primary methods for voice communication.
- Examples of VoIP include: Skype, Teamspeak, and Ventrilo.
- Computer network and network card help and support