History of VoIP
The concept of VoIP originally referred to using internet protocols to link PBXs (Private Branch Exchanges), but it’s now synonymous with IP telephony. Early pioneers like Paul Baran and researchers explored packet network designs. In 1973, Danny Cohen showcased packet voice over an early network called ARPANET. The breakthrough came a year later with the first real-time conversation over ARPANET. In 1977, the User Datagram Protocol was added to carry real-time traffic.
In 1991, the Speak Freely application marked the first VoIP release. InSoft launched Communique in 1992, a desktop conferencing tool that even supported video conferences. InSoft is credited for pioneering the first commercial VoIP services in the US.
In 1994, the FCC mandated VoIP providers to adhere to the Communications Assistance for Law Enforcement Act of 1994. Additionally, they were required to contribute to the Universal Service Fund.
By 1995, Intel, Microsoft, and Radvision began standardizing VoIP systems. The ITU-T then established standards for voice transmission and signaling over IP networks, creating the H.323 standard. The G.729 standard also emerged, and SIP was standardized in 1999.
The FCC started requiring VoIP providers to offer 911 emergency call capabilities in 2005. This marked a pivotal moment, enabling VoIP to connect with traditional phone networks. However, emergency calls in VoIP have distinct characteristics. For instance, providers with the right hardware can approximate the caller’s location using the network router’s assigned IP address.
In 2006, another codec, the G.729.1 protocol, was introduced. This was followed by the expansion of VoIP device manufacturers in Asia the next year. The SILK codec gained attention in 2009 for being used in voice calls on Skype.
- What is VoIP?
- How does VoIP work?
- What is a VoIP Phone?
- What is a VoIP Number?
- What VoIP equipment do I need?
- Are there any disadvantages to using VoIP?
- How to choose a VoIP provider?
- Key Features to Look for in a VoIP Phone System
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