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9 replies to this topic

#1 madams

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Posted 22 April 2009 - 05:29 AM

Anyone use Skype, os similar.

If so, any good?

I am considering implementing it but still not sure.

A friend of mine told me he pays 51 per year for unlimited calls to Europe landlines. Seems a great deal to me!

Pros and cons...

#2 NASA

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Posted 22 April 2009 - 06:48 AM

The Bosses here use it, and if it's Skype to Skype it's completely free calls.

Personally I think the sound quality isnt good enough for Professional / Business use (nor does the missus , some of the bosses at her place have them also)

The idea is great, but also confusing...

If everyone had a Skype type phone, all phone communications would be free, how many big businesses would that make insolvent?

So is the catch going to be when everyone has one, it becomes no longer free to use and you have to subscribe for the software, bit like all the free anti-virus software, Panda, Kaspersky , free till millions are using it then wham, slapped with a subscription charge.

Plus there could be an issue with switchboard functionality for big businesses , voice mail, out of office, redirect, etc. etc.

So if a skype call to your skype phone which is free , get redirected to your mobile , who has to pay?

For personal use or for business to business where you both have a skype , it might be worth it, but I don't think it's anywhere near replacing conventional landlines yet, just like mobile phones haven't!



#3 MaKa

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Posted 22 April 2009 - 08:00 AM

I've used Skype for some video conferencing and it's ok provided your internet connection is fast enough. There are often issues to get it working properly - mics/speakers that don't work etc. which may not make it ideal for a business situation.

If you're being called from a specific country a lot I would recommend looking into a country specific VOIP providers and do some comparison. Your clients/family/friends can call a cheap/free local number and you can pick it up anywhere in the world.

I find that a lot of people stop having landlines and start having mobiles only, so the Skype deal may seem better than it actually is. I've got a Dutch and UK landlines that work similar to prepay phones. I pay €10 a year for the NL number and top-up with credit (for landlines and mobiles) when I've spent it. It's connected to a voip analoge adapter into which I've plugged a regular telephone. As with Skype the quality depends on your internet connection and specifically your upload speed. I've lived in a couple of places where the sound was bad. At the moment call quality is reasonably good. I've just checked my actual broadband speed on speedtest.net and it shows 3.3Mb/s download and 0.37Mb/s.

@NASA That's why most phone companies have gone into broadband. I think that in future you'll no longer pay for your phone calls, you just pay for your broadband whether that's a fixed line or on your mobile phone, you'd end up paying for data volume rather than voice minutes.

#4 NASA

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Posted 22 April 2009 - 08:29 AM

QUOTE
you'd end up paying for data volume rather than voice minutes.
I don't like this idea! We do get our landline phone with our ISP , but we have no data transfer limits, nor would I want them. I don't mind paying 1p per minute for a phone call and certainly don't want to have to boot my PC to make it.

I guess eventually all communications will route via TCP/IP , however the charging structure is worked out. But they will never replace my landline, I don't do mobile phones and never will.



#5 MaKa

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Posted 22 April 2009 - 08:47 AM

NASA, I don't really suspect you'd be paying by the byte. You'll get a data limit for your money, the more your pay the higher your limit. Which in the UK is already the case for most providers. With the addition that even most "unlimited" packages do in fact have a fair use limit (go figure). Rather than being billed by the minute for each individual call as you are now you just pay a flat fee each month.

You can make VOIP calls over TCP/IP without using your computer, as I said I use an adapter, but there are also dedicated VOIP phones available. No need to switch on a PC. - Even some fancy mobile phones support VOIP, when you're within your home WiFi network.

#6 NASA

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Posted 22 April 2009 - 10:54 AM

QUOTE
but there are also dedicated VOIP phones available.
do they come with all the features a convential phone does?

Also how do you get your normal phone number to re-route via VOIP ? wouldn't want to have to change my home phone number.

Do they also adhere to the call barring and caller ID security features normal phones do?

#7 oneofthe3lions

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Posted 22 April 2009 - 06:58 PM

I personally have used Skype for several years without hitch and haven't really suffered many bad calls. A good headset and mic can often make a difference of course.

Invaluable for me calling abroad all the time and with our deal old Telefonica here in Spain being a nightmare when it comes to keeping track of billing etc it is far easier to see what we are spending and have control over it.

Also allows integration into your website so callers can chat or call you when you are showing as available and anything that is in high use by the general public and gives them an often cheaper option than calling you via landline can only be an added positive.

#8 Michael Martinez

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Posted 22 April 2009 - 10:45 PM

I use Skype for Skype-to-Skype calls and videoconferencing. We have broadband connections on both ends and sometimes the sound quality is a bit rough. I would not recommend using Skype on a system with other Internet applications if sound quality is important.

#9 MaKa

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Posted 23 April 2009 - 03:10 AM

QUOTE(NASA @ Apr 22 2009, 04:54 PM) View Post
do they come with all the features a convential phone does?

Do they also adhere to the call barring and caller ID security features normal phones do?


I believe most dedicated VOIP broadband phones come with those features. You'd have to check the individual phones features though as they may vary. I've got the most simplistic phone (5 from Argos wink1.gif) plugged into my adaptor so I couldn't tell you, but I believe it should do number recognition etc.

QUOTE(NASA @ Apr 22 2009, 04:54 PM) View Post
Also how do you get your normal phone number to re-route via VOIP ? wouldn't want to have to change my home phone number.


Not sure whether you can transfer your number, when I setup my VOIP number three years ago or so I couldn't but it could be that it's possible now. It may also depend on which provider you go with.


#10 thefandango

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Posted 24 April 2009 - 07:10 AM

I use skype for text chat with developers etc, but have found the text chat sssllloowwww in the past week or so.




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