• VoIP & Wi-Fi:
    using the internet to make calls

    A VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) and Wi-Fi Calling are technologies that allow you to make voice calls using an internet connection instead of traditional phone lines.

  • Understanding VoIP & Wi-Fi calling

    • 1 What is VoIP
      • VoIP, or Voice over Internet Protocol, allows you to make phone calls over the internet instead of using regular landlines or mobile networks. Just like your old landline, VoIP enables you to call any landline or mobile number via your internet service. You can use your existing handset as long as it’s connected to a compatible modem-router or adapter.

        VoIP simply works by converting analogue voice calls into little packets of data. VoIP basically means you’re using the internet to make phone calls, and your voice is transformed into little packets of data that are then deciphered on the other end.

      • Having problems with your VoIP service or set up?

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    • 2 Can I get VoIP?
      • Anyone with a reliable internet connection can use VoIP, but there are some important limitations:

          • VoIP is not suitable for medical alarms, faxes, or priority assistance services.
          • It requires an active internet connection, so it won’t work during power outages or internet disruptions.
          • If you use Fixed Wireless, mobile broadband, or a fibre-optic connection, call quality should be similar to a landline. However, if you ae connected to the NBN SkyMuster satellite, you may experience delays and variable call quality due to the distance the signal has to travel.
          • VoIP should be an additional voice service, not a replacement. VoIP calls can fail during power outages, rain fade, or provider outages.

        *Both your landline and VoIP line must accept 000 calls.

    • 3 VoIP calling costs
      • Since VoIP calls are made via the internet, they only use your internet data, not your phone plan’s data. However, if you are on a PAYG or BYO plan, be aware that calling numbers starting with 13 can incur a fixed rate, and international calls may still have charges.

        Data used per call depends on your equipment and service provider but generally ranges between 25Mb and 80Mb of two-way data for each hour. Most internet plans have at least 20Gb of data available each month, so VoIP calls should not significantly affect your monthly data.

    • 4 What is Wi-Fi Calling
      • Wi-Fi Calling allows you to make voice calls and send text and picture messages using your Wi-Fi network instead of a traditional mobile network. This feature is especially useful in remote areas or situations where you have a weak or no mobile signal but have access to a Wi-Fi connection.

        Not all phone companies offer Wi-Fi Calling, and not all phones support it. To use this feature, your phone company must support VoWi-Fi (Wi-Fi Calling), and your phone must support VoLTE (Voice over LTE). If you’re interested in using Wi-Fi Calling, contact your mobile provider for assistance.

      • Having trouble with your Wi-Fi Calling? Let’s troubleshoot.

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    • 5 Devices and providers offering Wi-Fi Calling
      • Currently, Optus, Telstra, and Vodafone networks all support this feature. However, older phone models and some networks may not. If you are considering purchasing a new mobile, it’s a good idea to check for Wi-Fi Calling compatibility when exploring your options.

        The steps to enable Wi-Fi Calling vary depending on your phone type and software version. These methods can change with phone updates, so if you encounter any difficulties, contact your mobile phone network provider for assistance.

        You can also find support on your mobile provider’s website:

        Things to check:

          • Ensure your mobile device’s Wi-Fi capability is turned on.
          • Some SMS and MMS messages may not be sent or received using Wi-Fi Calling.
          • Make sure your mobile has the latest software and updates installed.
    • 6 Wi-Fi Calling costs
          • Calls and SMS/MMS will be charged at your standard mobile rates
          • Data usage will be charged at your standard data usage rate as per your chosen home internet plan.
          • The cost to purchase a compatible mobile phone if you don’t already have one.
    • 7 What is the difference between VoIP and Wi--Fi Calling?
      • VoIP and Wi-Fi Calling both let you make calls over the internet, but they work differently. VoIP uses any internet connection to make calls from devices like computers and VoIP phones, commonly used in business settings.

        Wi-Fi Calling is a mobile carrier feature that allows you to make calls and send texts over a Wi-Fi network using your phone number. It’s designed for mobile phones and works seamlessly with the traditional mobile network. While VoIP needs special setup and a service provider, Wi-Fi Calling just requires a compatible phone and carrier.

  • Tips and tricks for VoIP & Wireless Calls

  • See all the tips

  • Couples

    Your complete guide to setting up VoIP & Wi-Fi Calling

    The following guide offers extra information for setting up VoIP, as well as Wi-Fi calling, and video conferencing. You can download this and save it to your computer or print it out for future reference.

  • Your options for using VoIP to make a phone call

      • Using normal telephone

      • Telephone handset connects to the internet router
      • Use the handset to dial outgoing calls
      • The call is connected via your internet connection
      • Don’t need an additional landline or mobile service
      • No need to learn how to use new programs or equipment
      • Using computer software

      • Set of headphones with a mic connects to the computer & software (e.g. Skype)
      • Use the keypad on your computer to dial outgoing calls
      • The call is connected via your internet connection
      • Don’t need an additional landline or mobile service
      • Provides mobility, but slow internet can cause call quality issues
      • Using landline & VoIP

      • Telephone handset connects to the internet router
      • Option to take incoming calls on your landline & make outgoing on the cheaper VoIP service
      • The call is connected via your internet connection
      • Don’t need an additional landline or mobile service
      • Transfer your home phone number to your VoIP service or make a separate VoIP number
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    More information about VoIP & Wi-Fi

    • 1 What equipment do I need to use VoIP?

      You can use any of the following to use your internet connection to make phone calls:

        1. Regular Phone: You can use a regular old-fashioned phone, but you might need an Analogue Telephone Adapter (ATA) to make it work with the internet. This ATA converts your ordinary plug phone’s signal for internet use. Your service provider can guide you on how to set up a VoIP service with this.
        2. VoIP Cordless Phone: a special cordless phone system explicitly made for VoIP.
        3. Computer Software: If you prefer using your computer, you can use software like Skype. All you need is a headset with a microphone plugged into your computer to make calls over the internet.

      Experienced users might explore using a third-party VoIP Service Provider (VSP), usually for more complex VoIP needs or business-related requirements. For most people, the first three options should suffice.

    • 2 What are my VoIP handset plan options?

      Many Retail Service Providers have VoIP as an optional extra to their plans, possibly with a small additional monthly cost (around $10-$20). Like ordinary landline plans, there may be a cost per call. For example:

        • Local & National calls : from 15c/call
        • Mobile calls: from 22c/call
        • International calls: from 5c/call
        • 13/1300 Numbers: from 35c/call

      Data used to make a call is prioritised over ordinary internet data. This means VoIP calls will be delivered using the best quality service available to you at that point in time. RSPs offer VoIP services of comparable quality to other voice services.

      *These costs are taken from Ant Communications’ Pay As You Go plan, which costs $5/extra per month. Other plans from other providers may have higher or lower prices. They do not include the cost of the VoIP handset and other hardware, which is likely to be a once-off cost of between $90 – $200.

    • 3 What VoIP computer software plans are there?

      Software such as Skype is free to download and use when the person you want to call is using the same software. Any other calls may come at a cost, calculated as a one-off connection fee or charged per a specific period (seconds or minutes). Some extra benefits may require a paid subscription. Skype is the best-known and most well-supported of the VoIP packages.

    • 4 Can I use my current phone number on the VoIP service?

      Yes, but it will have to be “ported” across, which means it’s no longer associated with your landline. If you plan to keep your landline as well as using VoIP, you’ll need a new phone number for either the VoIP service or the landline. Give us a call if you need further clarification.

    • 5 Can I get caller ID, MessageBank and other similar features on my VoIP service?

      It depends on your service provider and your equipment. In most cases, yes, you’ll have all the same services as you’ve had on your landline, except for MessageBank.

      MessageBank is owned and provided by Telstra. It works over VoIP, but only on an internet connection (including nbn®) supplied by Telstra. It is unavailable on VoIP services provided by any other provider, including nbn®. Standard Voicemail is still accessible though.

    • 6 What about satellite lag?

      The dedicated TC1 channel and dedicated VoIP equipment overcome the satellite lag to a certain extent. You may notice a slight delay when making the initial call, but the software does its best to make the service as quick as possible.

        • “Dedicated TC1 channel” refers to a specific, reserved communication channel for a particular purpose.
        • “Dedicated VoIP equipment” means specialised equipment designed for making internet-based phone calls.
    • 7 How much data does a VoIP call use?

      An active VoIP phone call uses between 30Mb and 80Mb of data per hour. It varies depending on your service provider and equipment’s “codec” (coder-decoder). Codecs compress the data sent during VoIP calls, promoting lower latency and higher audio quality.

      There are two codecs used in Australia:

        • G.729. This is the most common and a lower-quality codec. The TC1 channel can support up to four simultaneous calls at the same address using the G.729 codec. Each call uses about 30Mb of data per hour.
        • G.711. This is a higher-quality codec. The TC1 channel can support one call at a time using this codec. Each call uses about 80 Mb of data per hour.

      *VoIP calls are unmetered on nbn® Sky Muster® Plus plans. Note that the TC1 channel is not available with Plus plans at the time of writing.

    • 8 Do I have to use my current service provider’s VoIP service?

      No. There are third-party suppliers of VoIP services, generally to support business or complex phone setups. They’re called “Voice Service Providers”, or VSPs.

      However, going through your service provider is generally the easiest option. Discuss your requirements with your trusted technical advisor to make the best decision for your needs.

    • 9 Can I make emergency calls on my VoIP?

      Yes, but check that with your provider before ordering your service.

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