If you have been using alternatives to traditional phone service for any length of time, then chances are, you are familiar with Skype. Since its beginning in 2005, Skype users have grown from 75 user accounts to more than 663 million registered users as of September 2011. Skype is a VoIP service that works on a peer-to-peer system, which is shown in its name “Sky peer to peer.” Over the years, Skype has developed a variety of features, such as voice chat, instant messaging and video conferencing that can support up to 25 people at a time.
Now, to make Skype even better is the FreeTalk home phone adapter. With the FreeTalk home phone adapter, you use a small adapter box ($40) that sits between your broadband router and your home phone, allowing you to make Skype calls to landline and mobiles via your home phone. In addition to being perfect for both home and business, the FreeTalk home phone adapter for Skype also means the following benefits:
- The ability to call people who aren’t on Skype at local rates
- More flexibility with instant messaging
- Being able to share large files with the click of a button
- Lower costs for landlines and mobiles, locally as well as globally (cost as low as 1.2 ¢ per minute)
- Group video calling, saving travel time and expenses
- The FreeTalk adapter can store up to 100 speed dials and 200 Skype contacts
- Initial setup requires minimal items- a broadband connection and if you choose, a digital GE cordless expandable phone integrated with Skype.
- The adapter comes with 300 minutes of international talk.
Even if you decide to only use Skype FreeTalk just for business, consider these communication advantages:
- Individual accounts for each employee that can be assigned credit based on use/need.
- Lower rates for international calling
- An online number that allows easy worldwide calling
- Skype manager, which allows you to control Skype features and credits
So, what types of prices are involved with Skype? Consider this, Skype offers unlimited home phone service for around $5 a month; other VoIP providers are 5 to 8 times more expensive. Making Skype even more attractive is the iPhone Skype app. This app allows calls to your Skype number without using any of your cellphone minutes.
There are some downsides to using Skype, however.:
- You cannot make 911 calls from Skype
- The FreeTalk adapter mentioned above does not support caller-ID
- Although the Free-Talk adapter and Skype did not have the delays that I get from Vonage, the line had a slight hiss in the background
- You cannot transfer your existing phone number over to Skype
If one of your goals for the upcoming year is to save more money, take some time to see what Skype has to offer. You may find that saving money is easier than you think. To learn more about how the Skype FreeTalk adapter can help your business, give us a call here at Page Progressive and see for yourself. We use Skype as well as other VOIP solutions like Vonage and OOma, and would be glad to share our thoughts.