New user questions about VOIP

Discussion in 'UK VOIP' started by Lem, Jul 3, 2007.

  1. Lem

    Lem Guest

    I'm a bit of a newbie when it comes to VOIP and I would like to ask
    the specialists here for some pointers.

    ---

    The FAQ I tend to read (eg http://www.voipfaq.net/types of voip.php)
    do not really help me understand if I would find VOIP is either more
    convenient or cheaper than what I have now.

    (a) I work at home and have 2 MB cable internet.
    (b) It is on for about two-thirds of the working day.
    (c) 90% of my calls are to 01/02 and 0845/0844/0870 numbers.
    (d) I recently an NTL deal for 24x7 free calls to 01/02 landlines.
    (e) I pay £20-£25 per month just for calls (via 2p-a-min Tiscali).

    ---

    (1) Is there any cost advantage in me getting VOIP. I think that in
    my situation I would have to pay to use VOIP, wouldn't I.

    (2) What destinations would I be better off using VOIP rather than
    NTLs 24x7 service?

    (3) As it just so happens I need to get a DECT handset. Is it worth
    getting a DECT handset with VOIP capability (eg single Panasonic
    handset £100 KX-TG9150ES verus non-VOIP £48 KXTG7120ES) or is the
    steep extra £50 for VOIP mainly for convenience rather than for
    economy?

    Thank you for any info.
     
    Lem, Jul 3, 2007
    #1
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  2. Lem

    Brian Guest

    On 03-07-2007, Lem <> wrote:

    > (3) As it just so happens I need to get a DECT handset. Is it worth
    > getting a DECT handset with VOIP capability (eg single Panasonic
    > handset £100 KX-TG9150ES verus non-VOIP £48 KXTG7120ES) or is the
    > steep extra £50 for VOIP mainly for convenience rather than for
    > economy?


    The extra 50 GBP is for being able to connect to a running version of
    Skype on a computer. Which might be a great convenience if Skype was
    your preferred method of VoIP communication and there were many Skype
    users you were in contact with. Skype-to-Skype calls are free but you
    would have to examine the rates on the Skype website to decide on the
    economics of purchasing such a phone.

    --
    Brian
     
    Brian, Jul 3, 2007
    #2
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  3. Lem

    Linker3000 Guest

    Lem wrote:
    > I'm a bit of a newbie when it comes to VOIP and I would like to ask
    > the specialists here for some pointers.
    >

    [Snip]

    If you are serious about VoIP, forget Skype and go for a 'proper'
    SIP-based service - there's plenty to choose from - I'm with voip.co.uk
    and no doubt others will suggest their favourites.

    With a suitable SIP phone (starting at around £30) or a regular phone
    and an Analogue Telephone Adaptor (also starting around £30), you will
    have a decent service that's not tied to having a PC running, plus you
    can get bundled free minutes among a host of dial plans.

    L3K
     
    Linker3000, Jul 3, 2007
    #3
  4. Lem

    Owain Guest

    Lem wrote:
    > I'm a bit of a newbie when it comes to VOIP and I would like to ask
    > the specialists here for some pointers.
    > (1) Is there any cost advantage in me getting VOIP.


    VoIP can be a lot cheaper if you want multiple lines/numbers eg to
    separate home and business calls, or different numbers for special
    promotions or to track advertising.

    > (3) As it just so happens I need to get a DECT handset. Is it worth
    > getting a DECT handset with VOIP capability (eg single Panasonic
    > handset £100 KX-TG9150ES verus non-VOIP £48 KXTG7120ES) or is the
    > steep extra £50 for VOIP mainly for convenience rather than for
    > economy?


    As Brian says, those are for connecting to a computer. Use an Analogue
    Terminal Adapter and connect any ordinary phone (or feed the output into
    a PBX) or use a proper IP phone that connects direct to your router, and
    you won't have to have your computer on all the time. A proper IP phone
    can also cope with multiple 'lines' and if you want to have a computer
    running all the time you can run Asterisk on it to give you VoIP PBX
    facilities.

    As you work from home your home will be subject to the Health and Safety
    At Work Act and you should consider that VoIP is less resilient than
    ordinary telephone service, doesn't work if you have a power or
    equipment failure, and may not allow you to make 999 calls (and will not
    provide the emergency services with your location automatically) so you
    need to carry out a risk assessment and determine whether alternative
    provision for 999 calls is needed.

    Owain
     
    Owain, Jul 3, 2007
    #4
  5. Lem

    lordy Guest

    On 2007-07-03, Owain <> wrote:
    >
    > and if you want to have a computer
    > running all the time you can run Asterisk on it to give you VoIP PBX
    > facilities.


    A bit out of newbie territory but it also runs on Linksys WRT54G.
    http://www.voip-info.org/wiki-Asterisk Linksys WRT54G


    Lordy
     
    lordy, Jul 3, 2007
    #5
  6. Lem

    Brian A Guest

    On Tue, 03 Jul 2007 16:43:11 +0100, Owain
    <> wrote:

    >Lem wrote:
    >> I'm a bit of a newbie when it comes to VOIP and I would like to ask
    >> the specialists here for some pointers.
    >> (1) Is there any cost advantage in me getting VOIP.

    >
    >VoIP can be a lot cheaper if you want multiple lines/numbers eg to
    >separate home and business calls, or different numbers for special
    >promotions or to track advertising.
    >
    >> (3) As it just so happens I need to get a DECT handset. Is it worth
    >> getting a DECT handset with VOIP capability (eg single Panasonic
    >> handset £100 KX-TG9150ES verus non-VOIP £48 KXTG7120ES) or is the
    >> steep extra £50 for VOIP mainly for convenience rather than for
    >> economy?

    >
    >As Brian says, those are for connecting to a computer. Use an Analogue
    >Terminal Adapter and connect any ordinary phone (or feed the output into
    >a PBX) or use a proper IP phone that connects direct to your router, and
    >you won't have to have your computer on all the time. A proper IP phone
    >can also cope with multiple 'lines' and if you want to have a computer
    >running all the time you can run Asterisk on it to give you VoIP PBX
    >facilities.
    >
    >As you work from home your home will be subject to the Health and Safety
    >At Work Act and you should consider that VoIP is less resilient than
    >ordinary telephone service, doesn't work if you have a power or
    >equipment failure, and may not allow you to make 999 calls (and will not
    >provide the emergency services with your location automatically) so you
    >need to carry out a risk assessment and determine whether alternative
    >provision for 999 calls is needed.
    >
    >Owain

    I keep a spare mobile phone on at all times for 999 use.
    I agree with Linker3000, it is far better to forget about Skype and
    invest in a real voip system. When running Skype you have to factor in
    the cost of running a computer or you have to buy expensive hardware
    that runs on Skype without a computer. Whatever, you are tying
    yourself up with a single provider.
    Consider voip.co.uk for your UK 01/02 calls using an UNLOCKED ATA.
    If you are retaining a BT landline then 18185 are probably the
    cheapest for calls to 0845/0870. They are still accessible, via a
    geographic 02 or a free 0808 via voip if you choose to drop your
    landline (if you have cable broadband).

    ---
    Remove 'no_spam_' from email address.

    Sign the petition to get High Definition TV via Freeview.
    Get your friends to sign too!
    Ofcom want to auction off the spectrum needed for Hi Def.
    TV.
    http://petitions.pm.gov.uk/High-Definition/
    ---
     
    Brian A, Jul 3, 2007
    #6
  7. Lem

    Graham Guest


    >
    > (a) I work at home and have 2 MB cable internet.

    That's a good start

    > (b) It is on for about two-thirds of the working day.

    That's not so good. Why isn't it available 24/7?

    > (c) 90% of my calls are to 01/02 and 0845/0844/0870 numbers.

    But what is the ratio of 01/02 to 0845/0844/0870? Non-geographic numbers are
    bad news however you make your calls.

    > (d) I recently an NTL deal for 24x7 free calls to 01/02 landlines.

    OK

    > (e) I pay £20-£25 per month just for calls (via 2p-a-min Tiscali).


    I don't think I understand that.
    >
    > ---
    >
    > (1) Is there any cost advantage in me getting VOIP. I think that in
    > my situation I would have to pay to use VOIP, wouldn't I.

    No, at least not in the sense I think you mean.
    You just buy the hardware, probably an ATA, and sign up for
    one or more voip accounts. It' usually free to sign up and with
    some like Sipgate.co.uk you can choose an incoming number
    in almost any UK STD area. All free.
    To make outgoing calls you put credit into the account. Sipgate
    charge per minute for 01/02 calls, you might prefer an outgoing
    provider like voipcheap.com (the one I use) which has a slightly
    different credit protocol.

    > (2) What destinations would I be better off using VOIP rather than
    > NTLs 24x7 service?


    Arn't you paying a premium in standing charge/line rental for this
    privalage?

    If you are calling international destinations that will be an important
    factor in choosing your voip provider. As you will discover there are
    many of these, largely unknown names to the public at large,
    many are owned by the same corporation! But the main difference
    between them is the rates they charge to particular countries.

    >
    > (3) As it just so happens I need to get a DECT handset. Is it worth
    > getting a DECT handset with VOIP capability (eg single Panasonic
    > handset £100 KX-TG9150ES verus non-VOIP £48 KXTG7120ES) or is the
    > steep extra £50 for VOIP mainly for convenience rather than for
    > economy?


    I would recommend you go for an ATA and an ordinary DECT phone.


    >
    > Thank you for any info.
     
    Graham, Jul 3, 2007
    #7
  8. Lem

    PC Paul Guest

    Graham wrote:
    >> (a) I work at home and have 2 MB cable internet.

    > That's a good start
    >
    >> (b) It is on for about two-thirds of the working day.

    > That's not so good. Why isn't it available 24/7?


    I suspect it is, it's the PC that's only on 2/3 of the day. But I may be
    wrong.

    To the OP:
    With an ATA or a VoIP compatible router like the FritzBox you plug it
    into the cable router and the phone is always available, whether the PC
    is on or not. With an ATA you might need a network switch/hub to get
    enough connections, but these are cheap.

    In my case (Vonage - simple and flat rate per month for 01/02 numbers,
    and they supplied the router 'free') I have a router that plugs into the
    cable modem and gives me four ethernet ports and a normal phone jack.
    You just plug a standard phone or DECT base station in and use it as normal.

    The PC isn't involved at all.

    >> (c) 90% of my calls are to 01/02 and 0845/0844/0870 numbers.

    > But what is the ratio of 01/02 to 0845/0844/0870? Non-geographic numbers are
    > bad news however you make your calls.
    >
    >> (d) I recently an NTL deal for 24x7 free calls to 01/02 landlines.

    > OK
    >
    >> (e) I pay £20-£25 per month just for calls (via 2p-a-min Tiscali).

    >
    > I don't think I understand that.


    Ouch. You can easily do better. You'd have trouble doing worse..

    >> ---
    >>
    >> (1) Is there any cost advantage in me getting VOIP. I think that in
    >> my situation I would have to pay to use VOIP, wouldn't I.

    > No, at least not in the sense I think you mean.
    > You just buy the hardware, probably an ATA, and sign up for
    > one or more voip accounts. It' usually free to sign up and with
    > some like Sipgate.co.uk you can choose an incoming number
    > in almost any UK STD area. All free.
    > To make outgoing calls you put credit into the account. Sipgate
    > charge per minute for 01/02 calls, you might prefer an outgoing
    > provider like voipcheap.com (the one I use) which has a slightly
    > different credit protocol.
    >
    >> (2) What destinations would I be better off using VOIP rather than
    >> NTLs 24x7 service?

    >
    > Arn't you paying a premium in standing charge/line rental for this
    > privalage?
    >
    > If you are calling international destinations that will be an important
    > factor in choosing your voip provider. As you will discover there are
    > many of these, largely unknown names to the public at large,
    > many are owned by the same corporation! But the main difference
    > between them is the rates they charge to particular countries.
    >
    >> (3) As it just so happens I need to get a DECT handset. Is it worth
    >> getting a DECT handset with VOIP capability (eg single Panasonic
    >> handset £100 KX-TG9150ES verus non-VOIP £48 KXTG7120ES) or is the
    >> steep extra £50 for VOIP mainly for convenience rather than for
    >> economy?

    >
    > I would recommend you go for an ATA and an ordinary DECT phone.


    Ditto. Definitely don't get a VoIP phone. They cost luxury prices and
    tie you to a single VoIP supplier, usually Skype.
     
    PC Paul, Jul 3, 2007
    #8
  9. Lem

    Owain Guest

    PC Paul wrote:
    >> I would recommend you go for an ATA and an ordinary DECT phone.

    > Ditto. Definitely don't get a VoIP phone. They cost luxury prices and
    > tie you to a single VoIP supplier, usually Skype.


    True VoIP phones are coming down in price, and allow multiple 'lines' on
    one phone. They shouldn't be tied to any VoIP supplier (except the ones
    intended for Skype)

    Owain
     
    Owain, Jul 3, 2007
    #9
  10. Lem

    Martin² Guest

    You would make biggest saving by ditching your landline, thus doing away
    with the line rental.
    NTL / Virgin Media should let you do that.
    You could make other savings if at least some of your regular contacts are
    on VoIP too, then the calls can be free.
    If that is of any use you could have second / third etc. line at no extra
    cost (try that with BT !).
    Regards,
    Martin
     
    Martin², Jul 4, 2007
    #10
  11. Lem

    bhm Guest

    "Lem" <> wrote in message
    news:Xns9962824C55E99D5E712@127.0.0.1...

    uk.telecom.voip is this way -------->
     
    bhm, Jul 4, 2007
    #11
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