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Internet Phone Services Simplified

Book Description

Internet Phone Services Simplified gives you the most basic need-to-know information and then teaches you how to get the most out of your VoIP phone services:

  • Understand how broadband VoIP, Internet VoIP, and VoIP Chat services work

  • Learn about and compare different services, their advantages, and their limitations

  • Subscribe to a service, install equipment, and troubleshoot issues that might arise

  • Integrate services into your home, including reusing your existing house telephone wiring and phone handsets

  • Extend VoIP throughout your home by using multiline, extendable cordless phone systems

  • Take advantage of VoIP features, including virtual phone numbers and listening to voicemail using your computer while traveling

  • Internet phone services offer great advantages over existing telephone systems, allowing you to save money and make and receive calls using high-speed and broadband services. To help you take advantage of all that the Internet has to offer, Internet Phone Services Simplified provides you with an illustrated guide to understanding, selecting, and setting up voice over IP (VoIP) phone services.

    Internet Phone Services Simplified isn’t overly technical—you’ll get just what you need so that VoIP doesn’t seem like a mystery and so that you can make good choices about Internet phone services.

  • Provides a full-color illustrated and simple approach to learning about VoIP

  • Follow step-by-step instructions for selecting and installing VoIP at home

  • Explore new Internet telephony features and services 

  • Approved for Technical Accuracy by The Geek Squad

    This book is part of the Networking Technology Series from Cisco Press®, the only authorized publisher for Cisco Systems®.

    Table of Contents

    1. Copyright
      1. Dedication
    2. About the Authors
    3. About the Technical Reviewers
    4. Acknowledgments
    5. Foreword
    6. Introduction
      1. Starting Assumptions
      2. Microsoft Windows
      3. Mostly Linksys
      4. Tips from the Geek Squad
    7. I. Internet Telephony Fundamentals
      1. 1. Traditional Phone Systems
        1. In the Beginning
        2. Rise of the Machines
        3. Ma Bell
        4. Breaking Up the Happy Family
        5. Mobile Telephone System
        6. Internet
        7. Consolidate, Merge, and Acquire
        8. Important Things to Know About the PSTN
      2. 2. Voice over IP (VoIP)
        1. Circuit Switching and Packet Switching
          1. How VoIP Works
          2. VoIP Signaling
          3. How VoIP Carries a Conversation
          4. VoIP Features
          5. Power in VoIP Networks
        2. Putting It All Together
      3. 3. Advantages of Broadband Phone Services
        1. Lowering Your Monthly Phone Bill
          1. Infrastructure Costs
          2. Transport Costs
          3. Regulatory Compliance
          4. Taxes and Fees
        2. Phone Number Flexibility
          1. Keeping Your Same Phone Number
          2. Virtual Phone Numbers
        3. Online Call Management
          1. Voice Mail
          2. Call Forwarding
          3. Call Logs
          4. Click to Dial
        4. Summary of Advantages
      4. 4. Knowing Your Limits
        1. Reliability
          1. It’s Electric
          2. Reliance on Broadband and the Internet
          3. Voice Quality
        2. 911 and E911
          1. How 911 and E911 Works
          2. The Challenge for VoIP
          3. Solutions
        3. Summary of Limitations
      5. 5. From the Geek Squad Files
    8. II. Choosing an Internet Phone Service
      1. 6. Inventory of Broadband Phone Services
        1. Internet VoIP Phone Services
        2. Cable VoIP Digital Phone Services
        3. VoIP Chat Services
        4. Summary of Broadband Phone Services
      2. 7. Selecting an Internet Phone Service
        1. What Will I Use It For?
        2. What Is My Backup Plan?
          1. Power
          2. Backup Line
          3. Keeping a Minimal PSTN Line
        3. Which Service Should I Choose?
          1. Looking at Total Costs
          2. Is It Reliable Enough?
          3. Does It Have the Features You Need?
          4. Are Specialized Devices Supported?
          5. Revisiting Safety and 911
          6. Comparing Plans
        4. Summary
      3. 8. Selecting VoIP Equipment
        1. Cable VoIP Service Equipment
        2. Internet VoIP Service Equipment
          1. Choosing a Terminal Adapter
          2. What Do the Internet VoIP Providers Offer?
        3. VoIP Chat Service Equipment
        4. Summary
      4. 9. From the Geek Squad Files
    9. III. Going VoIP at Home
      1. 10. Connecting the VoIP Equipment
        1. Starting Point
        2. Connecting Cable VoIP Service
        3. Connecting Internet VoIP Service
          1. Signing Up for Service
          2. Installing a Stand-alone Terminal Adapter
          3. Installing an Integrated Router/Terminal Adapter
        4. Connecting VoIP Chat Service
        5. Making a Test Call
        6. 911 or E911 Registration
        7. Summary
        8. Addendum: Manually Configuring Terminal Adapters for Home Networks Using Static IP Addresses
      2. 11. Making VoIP Accessible Throughout Your Home
        1. Using Cordless Phones with VoIP
          1. Separate PSTN and VoIP Lines
          2. Two-Line Cordless Phones
        2. Using Your Home Telephone Wiring with VoIP
          1. Introduction to Home Telephone Wiring
          2. Getting Access to Two Lines
          3. Home Wiring with Cable VoIP Service
          4. Home Wiring with Internet VoIP Service
        3. Issues with Multiple Handsets
          1. Overloading Your Terminal Adapter’s Ringer Equivalence Number
          2. Simultaneous Handsets Off Hook
        4. Multiline VoIP Services
        5. Specialized Phone Devices
          1. Fax
          2. TiVo and Satellite Receiver Boxes
          3. Home Security/Alarm Systems
        6. Summary
      3. 12. Using Wireless Networks to Extend VoIP
        1. Wireless Bridges
        2. Wireless Phone Jacks
        3. Summary
      4. 13. Troubleshooting: Can You Hear Me Now?
        1. Classify the Trouble
        2. Service Connection Problems
        3. Voice Quality Issues
          1. Broadband Speed
          2. Broadband Network Quality
          3. Other Issues
        4. Dialing-Related Issues
        5. Getting Additional Help from Your VoIP Provider
        6. Summary
      5. 14. From the Geek Squad Files
    10. IV. VoIP Chat Services
      1. 15. VoIP Chat Services
        1. Instant Messaging
          1. Client-Server
          2. Peer-to-Peer
        2. Internet Messaging with Voice
        3. Summary
      2. 16. Using Skype and Google Talk
        1. Installing and Using Skype
          1. Improving Your Audio Quality
          2. Calling People Who Have “Real” Phones (and Phone Numbers)
          3. Getting Calls from People Who Use “Real” Phones
        2. Installing and Using Google Talk
          1. Adding Contacts in Google Talk
          2. Using Google Talk
        3. Summary
      3. 17. The Future of Telephony
        1. A Review of What We Have Now
        2. The Cost Battle: Consumers Versus Companies and Governments
        3. System Convergence
        4. Future Use Scenario
          1. Mitigating Factor No. 1: Intrasystem Cooperation
          2. Mitigating Factor No. 2: Battery Life and Size
        5. Conclusion
      4. 18. From the Geek Squad Files
    11. Glossary
    12. Appendix