VoIP technology enables you to make and receive telephone calls over a broadband Internet connection instead of over a traditional phone line.
With VoIP, voice traffic is converted into data packets and transmitted over the public Internet and/or over a private IP network. When you call a landline or cell phone number, the data packets are converted to a regular telephone signal before they reach the party you’re calling.
VoIP refers to a basic Internet-based telephony system. Unified communications is more advanced. Among unified communications’ many advantages are sophisticated call center features; conferencing that combines voice, data, video and desktop sharing; and presence-the ability to instantly determine the availability of others within your company.
For a basic VoIP system, all you need are a broadband Internet connection and a VoIP-enabled phone; a traditional phone connected to an adapter; or a computer with VoIP software.
Many businesses are now using VoIP and unified communications on their own private networks. Telephony systems residing on private networks have better security and quality than those that operate strictly over the public Internet. With VoIP or unified communications on a private network, you can prioritize voice over other types of traffic on your network, to ensure the best possible audio quality.