1. Introduction

Internet Telephony or Voice-over-IP (VoIP) is an increasingly popular way of making phone-calls via the internet instead of using the conventional telephone system. This document gives a brief introduction to the use of VoIP on the Oxford University's network.

VoIP calls can provide additional facilities (such as video) compared to conventional phones, and can give much cheaper call costs - calls can even be effectively free if you already have access to an internet connection.

The participants in a VoIP call can be:

  • A computer fitted with suitable audio hardware (e.g. microphone, speakers/headphone) and running VoIP software
  • A dedicated VoIP handset (or conventional handset connected through a VoIP adapter)
  • A conventional (non-IP) telephone handset (only as the recipient of a call).

For computer-to-computer calls, a number of free options are possible. VoIP calls to conventional lines are likely to require use of a commercial VoIP service.

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