What Is a VoIP in Wyoming?
Voice over Internet Protocol, popularly known by the acronym VoIP, is the conveyance of voice communications and multimedia sessions over Internet Protocol networks such as the internet. It is a technology that enables users to make voice calls using broadband internet connections instead of regular phone lines.
What Are VoIP and Internet Calls?
VoIP and internet calls refer to calls that use standardized technologies to deliver voice calls through the internet. These calls transmit data as packets using Internet network protocols, unlike the conventional circuit transmissions of public switched telephone networks (PSTN). Both use IP networks to enable voice and video calls as well as other multimedia services.
How Do VoIP and Internet Calls Compare to Landline and Cell Phone Calls?
Typically VoIP and regular phone calls serve the purpose of delivering voice communications from the caller to the call receiver. The difference between both calls is the method of transmission. Sound waves produced during VoIP calls are transmitted in digital form through wired or wireless networks. However, regular phone (landlines and cell phone) calls transmit sound waves through an analog system. Signals from regular phone calls are transmitted through cables and are decoded at the receiving end.
Regular telephone calls, including landlines and cell phones, utilize circuit switching, which entails two nodes establishing a specialized channel through the network for both nodes to interconnect. Cell phone calls are conveyed through electrical signals and radio waves via a base station that directs all cell phone calls made within an area. This system then runs the radio waves to the device of the receiver through the base station. Also, landline calls transmit soundwaves as electrical energy through copper wires and telephone exchanges.
VoIP and internet calls convey data in packets using packet switching over digital networks. The landing point of the packets determines the transmission, which is typically in small, separate blocks. The packets are then rearranged in a proper sequence to deliver the message to the call recipient.
VoIP and internet calls have several advantages over cell phones and landlines calls; some of which include:
- Ease of access: With VoIP, users can effectively make calls from anywhere around the world, provided there is a stable connection to the internet, but regular telephone calls are limited by geographical location.
- Operational and maintenance costs: VoIP offers a more cost-effective service than regular phone services; the cost of operating and maintaining VoIP services is generally cheaper than regular calls. Also, VoIP provides cost-effective service for long-distance calls, including international calls.
- Premium features: VoIP allows for more premium features than regular calls, such as multimedia support. Most of these features are available for free or at a very low cost, making them more scalable than regular calls.
- HD voice quality: Users are assured of better voice quality with VoIP calls, especially when the internet connection is stable, and the bandwidth is high.
- Flexibility: VoIP has a more straightforward setup and maintenance system than regular phone systems.
While different, regular and VoIP phone numbers can be investigated with reverse phone lookup searches in order to identify the subscribers linked to them.
Does Wyoming Regulate VoIP Providers?
Effective from July 1, 2013, the state prohibited the Wyoming Public Service Commission from regulating IP enabled or VoIP services. However, VoIP services will be subject to evaluation for the following:
- The Wyoming USF;
- The Wyoming 911 or E911 emergency service taxes;
- The Wyoming special fee for relay service; and
- The PUC assessment.
WY Stat § 37-15-105 also provides that the Commission is not authorized to regulate IP enabled service or voice over internet protocol service. However, suppose a service provider that qualifies for support under W.S. 37-15-501 or 37-15-502 voluntarily chooses to obtain Wyoming universal service funds to support a VoIP service. In that case, the supported voice over internet protocol service shall be subject to all laws and rules controlling such funds’ receipt. The support provided to those services must not exceed the support provided to qualified noncompetitive essential local exchange services on a per-access-line basis.
What Do You Need for VoIP and Internet Calls?
VoIP and internet calls’ primary requirement is a strong and stable broadband connection, ideally a fiber-optic network. A full fiber or Ethernet connection typically provides the best VoIP experience during VoIP calls. Other required tools are determined by the user's preferred VoIP calling method, which could be any of these:
- VoIP with a smartphone
- VoIP with a landline
- VoIP with a computer
VoIP on a Smartphone
This method uses a smartphone with an installed application for internet calls and a strong internet connection (WiFi). Mobile applications that support internet calls include Skype, FaceTime, Viber, Line, WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, etc. Note that both the caller and the receiver must have the same internet call application installed.
VoIP with a Landline
This method requires the use of an Analog Telephone Adapter (ATA) and a landline. These adapters are plugged into either a compatible router or a phone socket in the wall.
VoIP with a Computer
Here, the user will need to possess a laptop or desktop computer with a stable internet connection, compatible software, a speaker or headset, and a microphone. Software programs that support internet calls include; Apple Facetime, Skype, Google Talk, etc.
Are VoIP Numbers Different from Regular Phone Numbers?
Regardless of Voice over Internet Protocol numbers having the same ten numbers as regular phone numbers. There are some differences between both numbers, which include:
- VoIP numbers are allocated to individual users, as opposed to being allocated to a specific phone line.
- VoIP numbers use IP networks to make calls as opposed to the analog system of regular phone numbers that travel through copper phone lines,
- VoIP numbers are not limited by geographical location, provided there is a stable internet connection in both the caller and recipient’s locations. Contrastingly, regular phone numbers are restricted by location.
- VoIP numbers can work on multiple devices at the same time. On the other hand, a telephone number can only be used by one user on one device at a time.
Can You Make Free Internet Calls?
Yes, you can make free internet calls, but both the caller and receiver are required to have a stable broadband connection. They must also use the same mobile application or software to facilitate a free internet call. You can make free internet calls through the following methods:
- App to App – Here, calls can be sent between mobile applications that support free internet calls. These services run majorly on smartphones or tablets, and the caller and call recipient must have the same application installed. This method does not support calls to landlines or other mobile phones without the required software.
- PC to PC – Free calls may be made between PCs with the same internet call software programs installed on both computers.
- PC to Phone – This method supports free calls from a PC with the appropriate software program to a regular telephone number.
- App to Phone – Free calls can be made from the required app to a real number, including landlines and mobile phones that do not use the app.