Keep in Touch with Your Culture II VOIP

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Where Can You Find the Cheapest International Calls

In an industry once dominated by landline based telephone company monopolies the industry has changed dramatically.  These changes started to be evident when Cellular telephone providers began to break the traditional landline based monopolies.  The most important transformation to date is now underway with companies selling internet based telephone services known as VOIP or voice over IP calling.  VOIP has revolutionized telephone connectivity and now provides the cheapest international calls available.  All VOIP solutions require an internet connected location to function.

Voip calling
Voip Calling

Computer based calling

Microsoft, Google and Apple each have Web or computer based VOIP calling which range from free to very inexpensive, but each has significant shortcomings. Google has google talk which requires the installation of a software product.from Google to your Google account.  The cost of the service is $.01 per minute, but you do not get a fixed number and cannot receive inbound calls.

Microsoft entered this market by acquiring Skype and it is a popular application for group conversations that include video.  Skype calls are free to other Skype users but they charge a hefty $.23 per minute to call the USA or you can purchase an unlimited North American calling plan for $6.99 per month or an unlimited worldwide calling plan for $13.99 per month.   You can review skype calling plans at their website by clicking here.   You can also acquire a permanent skype number inbound callers can use from their cellphones or landlines, but this requires a paid subscription which can be acquired here.

Apple has a VOIP calling application called FaceTime which is preinstalled on the IPhone, IPad, IPod touch generation 4 and beyond and Apple computers running Mac OS 10.6 and above. Unlike Skype which was designed for group communication, FaceTime was designed for one on one communication. Of the 3  Facetime is the weakest service due to interoperability problems with its video communications and weak voice standards. You cannot call someone who is using a non Apple product using FaceTime.  Like other Apple products they want the world to conform to their vision instead of operating in an open source environment.  We highly discourage the use of this product.

Telephone based VOIP Calling

MagicjackGo is a small device that you plug into the wall then attach to your telephone using a standard telephone cable.and the device to your internet connection using a standard RJ 45 ethernet network cable.  It is currently on sale for $35 which includes the first year of service. Ongoing service after the 1st year costs $35 per year or $99.75 for 5 years.  These fees cover unlimited calling within the USA, Mexico and Canada and USA and Canadian telephone numbers are available.  The beauty of this is it does not matter where you actually live, you bring your MagicJack USA or Canadian telephone number with you.

Included with MagicJackGo is the MagicApp, which can be downloaded from the Appstore for IPhone or Google Play for Android phones, that lets you connect and call whenever your cell phone has an internet connection.  We use MagicJackGo in our household and recommend it.  It is inexpensive and it works well for families worldwide.  It is not a great business solution, the following 2 services are meant for business.

Vonage Business offers low cost solutions with knowledgeable and rapid customer service combined with excellent VOIP call quality.  Its business solutions start with the purchase of their voice to IP converter for $24.99 from Vonage.  The monthly cost per line ranges from $19.99 to $39.99 depending on volume.

Vonage Business features a  web based interface allowing you to make calls from your computer but it costs an additional $9.99 per month per line.   At no additional cost you can link your IOS or Android cell phone to your Vonage Business number allowing you to not incur charges from you cell phone provider when making calls.

Vonage Business customers who receive calls from up to 10 international contacts can use a unique feature called Boomerang. When the international caller dials the vonage number they receive a message that the Vonage Business customer will call them back immediately and to hang up.  Boomerang can then return the call, but at the Vonage Business customer’s much lower international rates.

Other common features include online voicemail access, account management via a web portal, conference calling, call forwarding, call waiting, simultaneous ringing on multiple phones and call blocking.

Vonage Business is one of the premier VOIP service providers that is designed for small to medium sized businesses.  To begin establishing an account with them you do so by clicking here.

VoIPStudio is a VOIP provider with solutions designed for businesses.  Their

VoIP Studis solutions
World class telephony solutions

solutions are meant to serve a 1 person home business or a multinational enterprise.   With VoIPStudio you have access to both inexpensive service starting at $4.99  per month per line and powerful features including a cloud based PBX exchange service that provides features only available to companies able to invest tens of thousands of dollars in their telephone system prior to the advent of VOIP technology.

By now you may be wondering what features are included in this service and what in the world is a PBX exchange.  A PBX exchange is a business telephone service used in offices, both fixed location offices and today, thanks to VOIP, virtual offices. Incoming calls can be routed, forwarded, shared with a group such as the customer service department and conferenced with multiple participants.

VoIPStudio provides the following features in every plan they sell including the least expensive $4.99 per month per line plan.  All VOIP to VOIP calls are free, your business associates can talk to each other whether they are down the street or across the world.  By using VoIPStudio your PBX system is maintained in the cloud, not in your office at your expense.

You have access to instant deployment of your system through secure web based signup and adding or deleting new numbers can be done from any internet connected device.   You can receive calls from your virtual number which is web based on any telephone, tablet or computer you desire and this can all be configured easily through your personal web portal.

You will benefit financially as well.  First, VoIPStudio will port your existing telephone numbers to your account.  All you have to do is tell them the number you want ported and which provider currently maintains it, they will do the rest like magic.  Second, their call usage rates are low, and they bill them by the second instead of rounding each call time to the next whole minute.  While in the beginning this will save you a little, as your business grows so will this monthly savings.  The service has no expensive equipment to buy nor long term contractual requirements, you can cancel at any time.

Mobile access is another benefit.  At no additional cost, your IOS or Android telephone can call using your VOIP numbers free of charge without using your cell phone minutes.

VoIPStudio has specific solutions designed for various industries including retail, travel tourism and hospitality, financial services, media and business services and is developing solutions for other industries.

To begin your free 30 day trial membership you can do so by clicking here.  If you have a business that reaches out to clients locally and worldwide, you will not regret it.


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