How Much Bandwidth is Required for VoIP Phones?

A long-standing question for potential VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) consumers is "How much bandwidth does a VoIP phone require to make quality telephone calls?"

First of all, Bandwidth is defined as the ability to transfer data (such as a VoIP telephone call) from one point to another in a fixed amount of time. The higher the bandwidth speed you have, the more data you can send over your Broadband Internet connection.

There are two types of bandwidth at your location: upload bandwidth and download bandwidth. The Upload Bandwidth is the amount of data you can send to the Internet and download bandwidth is the amount of data you can receive from the Internet. The more Internet bandwidth you have from your ISP (Internet Service Provider) the better.

In most cases, the normal VoIP telephone call will use up 90 Kbps (kilobits per second). If you have a Broadband Internet service provider that doesn't offer much bandwidth then most VoIP providers give you the option to lower the VoIP voice quality by lowering the bandwidth used for VoIP calls to 60 Kbps or, to really conserve your bandwidth, 30 Kbps. Most people can't tell the difference between the three settings. We suggest you use the high sound quality setting (90 Kpbs in most cases), if bandwidth is not an issue. High VoIP voice quality is generally the default setting but if you are running into a situation where your bandwidth is limited then you can adjust your VoIP bandwidth to one of the lower settings. Some consumers with 128 Kbps upload connections can receive less VoIP service quality due to a poor quality ISP (Internet Service Provider). By selecting a lower quality VoIP bandwidth setting, this problem can be avoided.

If you plan on using a VoIP service provider, should you get a DSL or a Cable Internet access provider? In general, DSL upload bandwidth starts at 128k where as Cable Internet upload bandwidth starts at around 600k. Cable Internet is a little bit more expensive, but it is also about 4-5 times faster than residential DSL and a bit friendlier to a VoIP telephone call. Having said that, both DSL and cable modem high-speed services provide sufficient broadband Internet access bandwidth to support any of the top VoIP service providers. If you are experiencing low Broadband Internet Service provider bandwidth, we suggest you try Packet8 VoIP. Packet8 VoIP boasts an advanced compression technology in which each active voice line uses approximately only 23Kbps of total data throughput, upstream and downstream.

The amount of bandwidth that a VoIP provider requires to make a quality telephone call is only one thing to consider when choosing a VoIP service provider. In fact, there are many things to consider when choosing a VoIP provider. An educated consumer generally results in a satisfied consumer.

Please see VoIP things to consider article (http://www.voipchoices.com/voip-considerations.html) to find a list of more things to consider when choosing a VoIP provider. You can also compare VoIP providers side-by-side by price and features at www.VoIPChoices.com

Chris Landry is the foremost authority on residential and small business VoIP providers. Chris is the founder of http://www.VoIPChoices.com. Chris has prequalified several high-quality VoIP providers and compares them by price and features at http://www.VoIPChoices.com

Chris can be reach via email at [email protected].

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