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What is PC-to-PC VoIP?


Jim Gurol (VP of Operations, Tierzero) gives expert video advice on: What is PC-to-PC VoIP?; Who can I call on a PC-to-PC VoIP line?; How does PC-to-PC VoIP work? and more...

What is PC-to-PC VoIP?

PC-to-PC Voice over IP is the ability to make a call from your computer to another computer using a microphone and a speaker. The way you do it is you install some free software you may download from the internet and install it on your computer, and you can call, for example, a family member in a different location and a different state. You don't need a service provider to do that, although some service providers also offer that software that you can download for free.

Who can I call on a PC-to-PC VoIP line?

A pc-to-pc VoIP line will allow you to make a call to another computer and it interact with the software that is on that computer. You will not be able to call a phone unless you use a service provider to do that.

How does PC-to-PC VoIP work?

PC-to-PC phone calls usually use a protocol called H323. And the way it works is you put in the phone number or the IP address of the other computer and it makes a streaming call from that computer to the other using that protocol. And so it just sounds just like normal. You'll hear your computer speaker ring and you push a button and you can answer that call.

How much does PC-to-PC VoIP cost?

Most PC to PC software is free. You can download that software, install it on your computer and start using it right away with other users that are running PC-to-PC software. Some examples are iChat, or NetMeeting from Microsoft. There's many on the market.

What are the advantages of PC-to-PC VoIP?

The advantage of PC-to-PC versus normal phone lines, is the ability to have a free conversation with the other user, or having, for example, interactive chat, you can have, let's say you're sharing documents at the same time you're having the conversation, and you want to do it all over your computer, you can do that using a PC-to-PC VoIP.

What are the disadvantages of PC-to-PC VoIP?

Some of the disadvantages of PC-to-PC VoIP is not having a physical handset to talk to the other person. You might prefer to talk on a handset. The other thing is the complexity of the software for VoIP. You have to install software, you have to know how to connect to the other user, there might be problems in getting it setup. The other thing is the call quality, it might not be as good as to what you are used to listening on an analogue phone.

What software do I need for PC-to-PC VoIP?

The software used for PC to PC voice over IP can be Ichat, Yahoo Instant Messager, Google Talk, Skype. There is a lot of software out there that does that.

What do I have to do to get PC-to-PC VoIP?

For PC-to-PC VoIP to work, you need to download and install some software on your computer. Typically it would be one of the instant messenger packages, or using iChat. You basically install the software on your computer. You need to have a microphone and speakers so you can make those calls to another computer and you need to know the other party's number or IP address so you can make the call to that person's computer.