Why your office needs a WiFi VoIP Gateway
VoIP gateways have the potential to make business operations much easier and more efficient. The problem is that many people don’t fully understand what they are or how they work. So, what exactly is a VoIP gateway?
A VoIP gateway (or PSTN Gateway) is a device which converts telephony traffic into IP for transmission over a data network. They are used in two ways:
The VoIP gateway allows calls to be received and placed on the regular telephony network. In many business cases, it is preferable to continue to use traditional phone lines because one can guarantee a higher call quality and availability.2. To Connect a Traditional PBX / Phone System to the IP Network:
The VoIP gateway allows calls to be made via VoIP. Calls can then be placed via a VoIP service provider, or in the case of a company with multiple offices, interoffice calling costs can be reduced by routing the calls via the Internet. VoIP gateways are available as external units or as PCI cards. The vast majority of devices are external units. A VoIP gateway has a connector for the IP network and one or more ports to connect the phone lines to it.
To fully understand VoIP gateways, though, you need to understand how they work. A VoIP gateway works as a bridge between an IP network and the PSTN and, depending on where the voice traffic originates from, it converts the voice traffic into the proper form for receipt by the destination network (IP or PSTN).
This conversion is made possible thanks to protocols and codecs. A VoIP protocol determines how the voice packet is transported across a network. Typically, a VoIP gateway supports a single protocol; some of the most common are SIP, SCCP, MGCP, and H.323. Meanwhile, voice codecs compress the voice stream within a digital packet. It also figures out the sound quality and bandwidth required to send the packet. The most common voice codecs are GSM, iLBC, G.711, G.722, G.726, G.728 and G.729.
So, for example, if the voice traffic originates from the PSTN, the VoIP gateway will convert the analog voice signal into a digital signal. From there, the digital signal is compressed using a codec and is broken into a series of packets that are transferred across the IP network using a signal protocol. If the voice traffic comes from an IP network, the opposite occurs.Types of VoIP Gateways
1. Analog units: Analog units are used to connect regular analog phone lines to the gateway. Analog units are available for between 2-24 lines.
2. Digital units: Digital units allow you to connect digital lines, either one or more BRI ISDN lines (Europe), one or more PRI/E1 lines (Europe) or one or more T1 lines (USA).VoIP Gateway Manufacturers
At Talinda East Africa, there are many VoIP gateways available today. Analog VoIP gateways start at as little as Ksh. 20, 000. 3CX supports numerous VoIP gateways.
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