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Wireless Ip Phones - Wireless IP Phones: Weighing the Pros and Cons

advantages of wireless ip telephones drawbacks of wireless ip phones

What are wireless ip phones? Wireless ip phones look like standard desktop phones and mobile phones – but they let people make phone calls for free. That’s because they use wireless Internet bandwidth to transmit the human voice. The technology is called VoIP, or Voice over Internet Protocol, and it’s also referred to as IP telephony, Internet telephony, broadband phone, and similar names.

Using VoIP has become more popular as wireless Internet networks have become more widespread. However, wireless ip phones aren’t ideal for every situation. Here are some advantages and disadvantages to consider.

Advantages of Wireless IP Telephones

Wireless ip phones have become especially popular with businesses for two main reasons: low cost and great flexibility. For example:

- Infrastructure costs may be limited to the expense of the phone hardware. Calls can be routed over existing data networks, and more than one call can be handled simultaneously by a single broadband connection. This means that phone calls are essentially free!

- Special calling features such as call waiting, conference calling, and call forwarding may be included on the VoIP phone. Traditional phone companies usually add on charges for these services.

- People with IP telephony can make free calls from anywhere they have wireless Internet. This can be ideal for realty brokers, trade show pros, and other highly mobile professionals.

Drawbacks of Wireless IP Phones

Considering the advantages of broadband phones, should traditional phone companies be worried? There are still some times when landlines are best. Consider these possible disadvantages of relying exclusively on an Internet phone.

- The quality of Internet voice connections may be disappointing. For example, latency (slow communication) and dropout (audio interruptions) sometimes occur during peak Internet hours – and unlike your local phone company, the Internet doesn’t provide a guarantee of service. On the other hand, some high-speed data networks have excellent buffer systems that minimize complications from Internet bottlenecks.

- Wireless IP phone service could become unavailable during a power failure. That’s because the service relies on a router or a cable modem, which in turn depends on the mains electricity or a local generator. Meanwhile, telephone company phone lines would probably continue to support traditional calls. People relying entirely on VoIP are advised to have cable modems with backup battery power in case of emergency.

- Emergency personnel may be unable to tie a wireless IP call to a physical location. Therefore, it’s advisable to activate VoIP E911, an emergency calling system that VoIP providers are required to offer. VoIP E911 ties telephone numbers to physical addresses, and in many cases it has assisted emergency service dispatchers. Of course, it’s the customer’s responsibility to keep the address up to date.

- VoIP users should also be aware of their vulnerability to hackers. Excellent encryption, firewalls, and anti-virus systems must be in place. If a hacker were to enter the system, he or she could deny a company its phone service, collect customer data, record phone conversations, and access voice mail.

In sum, wireless IP phones offer affordable and convenient calling, but it’s important to implement a strong data security system and have a “Plan B” set up in case of emergency.

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