Use your PC (personal computer) to save you money on your long distance international phone bill by setting up a process called VoIP, or Voice over Internet Protocol. Computers can make phone calls to other computers, in which both parties speak over their computer microphones, or computers can make phone calls to a cell telephone or landline phone.
Connect your computer to the Internet, preferably with a cable or high-speed Internet connection. A dial-up connection can work, but it is less reliable. Hook up your speakers and your microphone to your computer.
Research Internet sites that offer VoIP software to find one that fits your needs and budget. Some are free and others are only a few cents per minute for an international call. Make sure your computer is compatible with the software. Download one of the VoIP services.
Open an account with the company you downloaded the software from and deposit funds into an account, if that is required.
Read the instructions on how to dial up through your computer to the number you want to call. Familiarize yourself with using the "softphone," or dialing keypad, on your computer that came with downloading the program.
Find out the IP address (Internet Protocol Address) of your computer. Your IP address becomes the phone number of your computer, which you need to enter into the softphone keypad. On Windows XP computers, type "ipconfig" into your Start/Run menu. Your IP address will pop up. On Mac OS X, open system preferences, look under "Internet and Network" and click "Network." Your IP address will pop up. Look up your IP address each time you want to use the PC phone if your Internet service provider changes your IP each time you log on (some providers do not change it each time).
Input the international phone number you wish to call and dial out.
- A headset with a microphone boom works best. Do not use your Internet or computer for any other purpose while you are making your phone call, because this interferes with reception and may degrade the quality of the sound.
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