VoIP (Voice over IP) Softphones allow users to communicate via their laptop or desktop computer. This configuration literally allows a computer to act as a telephone enabling video calls, voice calls and text messaging.
VoIP softphones can be free or paid, or provided by any company that offers proprietary, softphones configured from their network.
Different VoIP programs will deliver a variety of features and layouts. Some are able to display your contacts for easier dialing, and others present keypad-like buttons. This application utilizes your computer’s camera and microphone, or can also be used with a headset and speakers.
Features of VoIP softphones include those common to traditional office phones for instance: call forwarding, conference calling, voicemail access, hold and call transfer capabilities.
Hardphones or VoIP phones are also available for use in conjunction with softphones. A hardphone resembles a handheld cellphone, and transmits calls or messages through custom software. Another option is an analog telephone adaptor, which transforms your cellphone into a VoIP device.
VoIP softphones are the new norm for those who travel extensively or work from home; they facilitate remote communication and allow the user to remain virtually location-less while still transparently tethered to business operations.
VoIP is even a viable option for replacing residential landlines, or a small business’ desk phones via a Hosted VoIP application.
Generally, VoIP softphones are easy to use, and are a way to decrease mobile phone bills. They also require less energy than alternative phones and software systems, making them a much “greener” option when it comes to both cost savings and the environment.