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A Voice over Internet Protocol service allows you to place phone calls locally, domestically and internationally. The cost is usually very low or even free. In order to use VoIP, you must subscribe to a provider. There are many to choose from, offering various levels of service and amenities. With some providers, you can continue to use your landline phone. With others, you will need an app to use on your mobile device or a computer that has a fast broadband connection. The service tier you choose will depend on your location and your calling needs. Most VoIP providers are fall into the following categories:

• Residential

• Business

• Mobile

• Software-based

• Device-based

Residential Providers
If you want a modern replacement for the traditional landline phone in your house, you can choose a residential VoIP provider. Using VoIP has become very popular across Europe and the United States in recent years, which has contributed to the growth of the industry and led to the creation of many providers. When you use a residential VoIP service, all of your existing phones are connected to your Wi-Fi modem through the use of an adapter. You will receive a monthly bill for the number of minutes you used or for an unlimited calling plan, depending on which tier you chose at signup. This is an excellent solution for people who are not comfortable with change and want to keep familiar phones. Residential providers include and Lingo.

Business Providers
When you run a business, you want to save time and money wherever you can. A standard business phone system uses a large amount of equipment that requires miles of cables and wires. This is messy and difficult to maintain. By switching to business VoIP providers, you can eliminate the cables and keep using the desk phones you already have. In addition, you can extend the service to include mobile phones used by employees and call them anywhere they are in the world for a cheap rate. Sometimes, these calls are free, even if the person is in another country. If you have a small business, you can start with a residential business plan and scale up when you need to. When your company is large, you can choose from premium VoIP business solutions. The leading business providers include Broadvoice, Ring Central Office and Vonage Business.

business voip

Mobile Providers
VoIP started out in the residential and business markets and has now spread into the mobile sphere. Providers have been showing up everywhere in recent years, allowing people to take the power of VoIP with them everywhere they go. A mobile VoIP plan allows the user to make free or inexpensive calls from any location in the world. In most cases, you need a data plan in order to use mobile VoIP service. You can also use Wi-Fi to connect your mobile phone calls. On your device, you can install WhatsApp, Viber or Skype and connect to other computers for free.

Software Providers
This is the most common type of VoIP service around the world. It works through a software application that provides a “softphone,” which is an emulated phone. The app is installed on a computer and is used to make and receive calls via the internet. You can use a microphone and your computer’s speakers for calls or buy a special wireless headset that connects with Bluetooth. Skype is the largest and best-known VoIP service that can be used either through a web interface or an app.

Device Providers
A device-based VoIP service is known as a “no-bill” provider. The company sells devices that are used with your traditional landline phones, either at home or at the office. The devices allow you to make free domestic long-distance calls, which can significantly reduce your monthly bill. To set it up, you plug the device into the phone equipment that already exists. You do not need a computer in order to use the device, but you must have a fast broadband internet connection. This is the perfect solution if you want fast, reliable and affordable VoIP service but do not want to make changes in your home or business. Device-based VoIP providers include MajicJack and Ooma.

Whether you need residential, business or mobile service, there is a VoIP provider that is ready and waiting to help you.