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  • VOIP phones

    Starting a new thread based on my question in the Smart Phones thread.

    Are there any good, inexpensive VOIP phones that will work with 802-11g WiFi? I want to set up an Asterisk system and need handsets and desksets to use with it.
    Dude, seriously, WHAT handkerchief?

    snooggums' density principal: "The more dense a population, the more dense a population."

    Iliana: "You're a great friend but if we're ever chased by zombies I'm tripping you."

  • #2
    Re: VOIP phones

    For those not familiar with VOIP (Voice Over Internet Protocol) telephony, you can make phone calls over the Internet to others, or use VOIP phones on your LAN to call into the public telephone network.

    http://www.voip-info.org/

    Asterisk is open source PBX software that you could run for a small business to replace the big expensive systems sold by consultants. It uses VOIP phones and adapters to gateway VOIP traffic to telco wiring.

    http://www.asterisk.org/

    You can even have a "soft phone", software on your computer that lets you use your headset to place calls to the VOIP network. An example is the free X-Lite from CounterPath:

    http://www.counterpath.com/
    Dude, seriously, WHAT handkerchief?

    snooggums' density principal: "The more dense a population, the more dense a population."

    Iliana: "You're a great friend but if we're ever chased by zombies I'm tripping you."

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: VOIP phones

      inexpensive voip phones is an oxymoron :p

      I'm sure that you already know this, you will need a bonded T1 line if you want to have seamless data / voice traffic for the SMB's network. Of course, this depends on the Small Business Data Traffic.
      -F-

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: VOIP phones

        For my purposes, it's a Very Small Business (VSMB). :D So we have one voice line and one fax line, and the fax line is also our ADSL data line. If the voice line is in use, one use's one's cell phone.

        I picked up a Sipura 3102 VOIP gateway to play with, perhaps to plug in to the fax line to gateway calls from the LAN to the one telco line. There are instructions out there to integrate the 3102 (which talks SIP) with Asterisk so it can use it for the telco link.
        Dude, seriously, WHAT handkerchief?

        snooggums' density principal: "The more dense a population, the more dense a population."

        Iliana: "You're a great friend but if we're ever chased by zombies I'm tripping you."

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: VOIP phones

          www.skype.com - ftw

          for 4.00/month you can get a local number in just about any market.
          Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not sure about the former. -Albert Einstein
          The two most common elements in the universe are Hydrogen and stupidity. -Harlan Ellison

          If all else fails: "rm -rf /"

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          • #6
            Re: VOIP phones

            You cant go wrong with skype.

            My former job we would use them on our dell PPCs and they workd perfectly. Could contact any tech across campus by just clicking their name and get instant help.
            that sounds like a good idea trooper.
            -Vulcan

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            • #7
              Re: VOIP phones

              You cannot have a Call Attendant or Unified Communications (or variants) with Skype though. Call Attendant is a must if there is a receptionist.

              Skype is only good for internal calling, but forget it when it comes to extensions, transfers or voice mail.
              -F-

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              • #8
                Re: VOIP phones

                I just ordered everything through skype, and it is 29.95 for a year of being able to call phones (free to US and Canada), then 30/year for a phone number (you can pick your city)

                so 60.00/year for a phone is awesome, despite the limitations.
                Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not sure about the former. -Albert Einstein
                The two most common elements in the universe are Hydrogen and stupidity. -Harlan Ellison

                If all else fails: "rm -rf /"

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: VOIP phones

                  Not directly related as I don't have a small business and I don't know if you would potentially use a cell for a business #, but we moved to T-Mobile [email protected] and got our T339 WiFi cell phones for $50 each.

                  Basically $10/month and all 3 of our phones get unlimited WiFi calls. Very good quality and we now use no where near our 1,000 anytime minutes a month, in fact we usually use just over 100 because everything in WiFi range doesn't count.

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                  • #10
                    Re: VOIP phones

                    The Skype and Mobile Phone options are valid, but still with these options you cannot have an internal network of phones capable of fax, switchboard, extensions, consistent phone numbers (ie 555-0001, 555-0002, 555-0003, etc), along with the ability of call forwarding options (such as dialing 555-0001 ext 01 would forward to a mobile phone or analog phone). VOIP / IP Phones work anywhere given the capability. If you have a wi-fi IP Phone, you can receive calls if you are connected to your starbucks wi-fi hotspot (not a good idea).

                    The only caveat to VOIP is bandwidth issues. Using public hotspots for VOIP for example can be an issue.

                    Here some reading on Cisco's VOIP -- it is pretty much the same as asterisk minus the proprietary features.

                    http://www.cisco.com/en/US/products/..._overview.html
                    -F-

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: VOIP phones

                      My shop sells Cisco Unified Communications, but, I think that's overkill for Scratch's question.

                      Thank goodness we stopped selling those awful, awful Avaya systems...
                      "But way back where I come from, we never mean to bother. We don't like to make our passions other peoples' concern." -Dar Williams
                      Former Captain of the 55th Infantry Division

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