There has been a lot of advertising on the TV, and radio attempting to entice people to purchase voice over internet phone service. What about a “free” internet phone system are there any that are good? The answer depends on which phone service you choose. A simple search of the internet will produce several companies claiming to have a “free” or “free to try” internet phone service.
Available Free VOIP Services
Skype has long been a favorite for many internet calling fans. With Skype, phone calls are computer to computer. All a person needs to use the service is internet access and a Skype phone or equivalent. If a person chooses they may instead use a headset and microphone. The advantage of this service is that calling another Skype user is free, the disadvantage is the free service does not include calls to non-Skype users. An individual can purchase time to call other phones. The rate for calls from internet to other phones is significantly less than a regular phone line.
Halloo is a phone service that offers quality phone service while using existing phone equipment. On the Halloo.com website, they offer a 30 day free trial. For a monthly fee, Halloo provides high quality business phone service with many standard-calling features including 800-service, caller ID, auto-attendant, call forwarding and voice mail.
Services with Special Required Equipment
Ooma is a “free” internet phone service. The only caveat is the need to purchase a product called a Telo pad. Retailing for around $200.00, and available at many consumer electronic stores online, and brick and mortar stores as well. The site states that there is a 5000-minute per month limitation, for residential service. The advantage to this system is that it uses your existing phones, and it requires nothing more than high-speed internet access. There is no need to have a computer.
It is important to note that free doesn’t really mean free. Many of the phone services offered using VOIP have fees attached to them. The per-minute rates are lower for sure than the landline rates of the local phone company, but high-speed internet access is a requirement.