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How To Choose a VoIP Provider

There's no question that VoIP is the best telecom decision you can make to save money for your home or business. However, picking the right VoIP provider for your needs is not always as straightforward as it seems. This guide will help you choose a VoIP service provider.

How to Pick the Right VoIP Provider

The VoIP world is big and growing. With hundreds of VoIP companies to choose from, no wonder some people find it hard to find a company they like! Don't settle for a VoIP provider. Find A VoIP provider that fits your needs. VoipReview's mission is to make finding a VoIP service provider for your home or business as simple a process as possible.


1. Know what kind of VoIP service you want

What features do you want? How much do you want to pay a month?

A typical VoIP service subscription usually ranges from $10-$20 a month. Compared to old telephone service, which starts at $20 for basic, local phone service, the VoIP system is much cheaper.

There are lots of features that come with VoIP service. Many VoIP features come free with your subscription to the VoIP service. Common features are:

  • call waiting
  • caller ID
  • voicemail
  • 3-way calling

Some VoIP providers give you a free second line with your subscription, too. Other features are more advanced, such as enhanced voicemail that lets you check messages on your phone, web browser, or email.

If you make international calls often, consider a plan that includes free minutes to the countries you call the most. So, if you call the UK every week or two, there are global plans available with minutes to the UK, such as ViaTalk's World Upgrade. VoIP service has low international rates but it might be worth paying up-front for an international calling plan instead of paying by the minute.


2. Search for VoIP providers

Once you have features and prices in mind, start looking around for the VoIP provider that interests you. You can start here and compare residential plans.


3. Read reviews about the VoIP providers

When you find a VoIP plan that interests you, read reviews of the VoIP provider. Pay attention to critiques of customer service, service reliability, and sound quality.


4. Read the terms and conditions for the VoIP provider you like

If you're satisfied with the plans, price, features, and customer reviews of the VoIP provider you picked, go to its website and read the terms and conditions. It will usually be at the bottom of the page in small print, sometimes called "terms of use."

There are a number of things you should understand when you are getting started with VoIP. Check out the questions below to find out how to get shop for VoIP and how to find the perfect provider for you.


Q: How do I get VoIP working for me?

A: There are two kinds of VoIP service providers: those that offer phone-based services, such as Vonage and SunRocket, and those that offer computer-based services, such as Skype. Each phone-based provider has different phone plans that are suited to meet different requirements. Since most computer-based services are limited to their own subscriber base (their basic service does not let you call any phone which doesn’t subscribe to the same service), we predominantly offer listings of phone-based VoIP plans. You can compare different plans and select the one that best suits your needs.


Q: Do I need to be a computer expert?

A: For phone-based services, you do not need to be computer savvy. A majority of VoIP service providers have plug-and-play install and include minimal hardware. More often than not, you can have your new VoIP phone service set up in a matter of minutes! But even computer-based VoIP services are not too difficult to set up.


Q: What kind of equipment do I need?

A: A broadband (high-speed Internet) connection is required. This can be a cable modem or a high-speed service such as DSL or a Local Area Network (LAN). To place a call into the regular (PSTN) phone network, you will need a VoIP service provider. The VoIP service provider will send you an adapter that you can plug into your Internet connection and then you can plug your regular analog phone into the adapter. Alternatively, you can hook up a relatively inexpensive microphone to your computer and send your voice through your computer and its high-speed Internet connection.


Q: Will I have to buy the equipment myself?

A: The equipment is often provided free of charge by the VoIP service provider. This equipment usually needs to be returned in the event that you cancel the plan. Some providers also give you the option of keeping the equipment by letting you purchase it during sign-up.


Q: How fast does my internet connection need to be?

A: The average DSL or cable connection is usually sufficient. Few providers offer service to dial-up internet customers. VoIP service with dial-up is not advised, due to poor voice quality and reliability. We recommend you check your connection speed here to determine the quality of your connection.
Check out our Speed Test to find out more about your broadband connection.


Q: Can I use my computer during a call and does it have to be turned on all day?

A: You can use the computer; depending on your service provider, a router may be required. Your computer does not need to be turned on if you are making calls with a phone and adapter or a special VoIP phone; however, your broadband Internet connection must always be on and active. As an added note, you can use your computer and surf the internet while talking on the phone without affecting voice quality.


Q: How do I get started?

A: You first need to determine which plans are available in your area and then select the provider and plan that best suits your needs. With VoipReview.org, you can search for both residential and business VoIP plans, right from our homepage!


Q: Where can I find more info?

A: If you have questions about using this site, please view our site FAQ. In addition to our many articles on VoIP, you may view user reviews of different providers to learn about the experiences of those users.

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