What is a VoIP phone?
A voice over internet protocol (VoIP) phone is a kind of telephone that uses IP technology to transmit calls. It can come either in the form of specialized digital hardware or a program (running on a computer or mobile device) that performs the same functions.
Fitted with a microphone and receiver, a VoIP telephone takes the sound you generate and converts it into packets of data. It then sends it over the network and out through the internet. The phone on the other end then decompresses the data and plays it back for the other person to hear.
Benefits of RingCentral’s VoIP phone system
Easy and simple setup
Mobility and flexibility
How do VoIP phones work?
Voice over IP technology involves a set of different protocols working together to replicate telephony functions. Each protocol has a different function, but all work simultaneously in real time.
- initiates the call (when you dial a phone number),
- establishes a connection (when the person being called answers the phone), and
- terminates the connection (when either of the participants drops the call).
What are the different transport protocols for VoIP?
Transmission Control Protocol (TCP) and User Datagram Protocol (UDP) are the two primary types of transport protocols used for data transmission across the internet.
Data travels over the internet in packets, which are transmitted using the IP network. Imagine sending a letter: you need an envelope to make sure it is delivered to its destination untouched and without delay. TCP and UDP are two kinds of envelopes you can use, and they both carry digital signals in the form of data packets. How does one differ from the other?
What are VoIP ports?
In network terms, a port is a communication endpoint used by the transport protocol to facilitate the stream of information. Every single piece of data has a destination port associated with it, and this port is associated with a number to enable the server to sort traffic and deliver the data to the correct recipient.
Port numbers range from 0 to 65535. For VoIP traffic, the standard port is 5060, which is used for both TCP and UDP connections. Consider it the gateway for VoIP functions such as media streaming and video conferencing. Often, port 5004 UDP is preferred when transmitting packets of data within a computer network.
VoIP providers use a variety of ports based on their specific product designs and requirements. They may also have a supplementary list of UDP ports for when they need to upgrade their products.
Apart from network ports, you may also need hardware ports in order to use complementary VoIP accessories. These can include headsets for devices not designed to be used like regular telephones and USB ports for USB phones.
VoIP hardware to maximize your internet telephone usage
FAQs about VoIP Phone Service
- Wireless or cordless phones: Wireless phones are essentially portable handsets. They combine the functionality of a regular desk phone with the mobility of a smaller device, allowing you to move freely in your place of business, even while on a call. The built-in Wi-Fi enables you to place calls from wherever there is a hotspot.
- USB phones: As the name implies, USB phones are plugged directly into your device using a USB jack. They are typically used alongside a softphone, so you can use VoIP more comfortably.