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proposed switch to internet phones in 2025

G6JPG-0
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Registered: ‎27-03-2024

Re: proposed switch to internet phones in 2025

@Baldrick1: You are quite right to be seeking further details from @Devongirl, such as is it only that one contact she has problems with. I would hope that it is just a matter of her moving her existing handset from the 'phone socket to an ATA, but I can't help wondering if ATAs (and/or internet 'phones) might use a different CoDec to the one BT now use. If all is well, that would be great.

@Devongirl: you may actually have other people who are using "internet 'phone", but who haven't told you they are, and you are hearing OK. (For a start, virtually any company - including PlusNet! - will almost certainly be using something, and you haven't mentioned having any problems hearing them.)

It's a pity it's at present somewhat complicated to actually try it out: if it wasn't for the complexity (and cost of the ATA), I'd suggest trying VoIP anyway - it might be a pleasant surprise. Given that an ATA is going to have to be purchased eventually, I'd say give it a go, with one of the non- (well, monthly) contract VoIP providers such as freeola or voipfone.

Further thought: there is free software available (you'd still need to have a VoIP in place though) that turns your computer (provided it has a microphone! Most laptops do, many desktops don't though they have a microphone socket) into a VoIP 'phone; you could try that which would at least save the cost of the ATA (the thing you plug your 'phone into). But you may have tried Skype, zoom, Teams, etc., and found you can't get on with them.

bmc
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Re: proposed switch to internet phones in 2025

@Devongirl 

One place to research is your current equipment. If you're happy with it look to see if the manufacturers have newer units that work with VOIP.

 

Brian

MisterW
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Re: proposed switch to internet phones in 2025

but I can't help wondering if ATAs (and/or internet 'phones) might use a different CoDec to the one BT now use. If all is well, that would be great.

Most UK voip suppliers tend to use G711a (alaw) , which is a PSTN quality codec.

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markhawkin
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Re: proposed switch to internet phones in 2025

@Devongirl 

Although Plusnet don't sell it, BT have a "digital voice" product and if you bought a phone and Internet service from BT that's what you would now get.

 

https://www.bt.com/broadband/digital-voice

https://www.bt.com/help/landline/digital-voice--how-do-i-set-up-my-service-

 

The router has a socket for you to plug a phone into.

 

If you turn the router off the phone (obviously) won't work but in terms of a close equivalent to the current landline service that's the easy answer.

 

If you plug your existing phone in, it will work like it does at present.

 

Having said that, I wouldn't rush to make that change, if you stay on the current Plusnet product until a hard "end of service" comes to your exchange you will get a few more years from the traditional landline.

 

I am the satisfied customer....
G6JPG-0
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Re: proposed switch to internet phones in 2025

Most UK voip suppliers tend to use G711a (alaw) , which is a PSTN quality codec.

By "PSTN quality", do you mean that's what BT/PlusNet use on the existing "analogue" lines? If so, then changing to VoIP should sound no different.

@Devongirlis it just the one person (who has told you they're using "internet 'phone") you can't understand, or several people?

MisterW
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Re: proposed switch to internet phones in 2025

By "PSTN quality", do you mean that's what BT/PlusNet use on the existing "analogue" lines?

Correct.

If so, then changing to VoIP should sound no different.

Provided there's a reasonably stable internet connection, with minimal jitter. Bandwidth shoudln't be a problem , it only needs around 64khz. However unless there is some QoS to reserve bandwidth then voip will be affected by whatever else is happening on the connection e.g streaming

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Baldrick1
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Re: proposed switch to internet phones in 2025

How is this for a theory/wild conjecture?

Assume that digital phones put out a raw digital signal to the earpiece, that is, it is a series of high frequency pulses that the mark one ear will filter, as even the best hearing doesn’t exceed 20kHz.

Now add in to the mix a sophisticated hearing aid that is designed to bring high frequencies into a limited frequency band using frequency band compression. Again, assuming that this works by sampling the audio using high frequency digital sampling you have raw digital audio output being sampled by an unsynchronised digital sampler, a recipe for all sorts of quality problems.

This is just a wild thought, I have no idea if this is what is happening, but if it is then all that would be required would be a simple low pass filter between the two to clean up the audio and give the hearing aid a clean analogue signal to sample.

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Devongirl
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Registered: ‎21-05-2024

Re: proposed switch to internet phones in 2025

Hi everyone

I read all the posts, but they are way over my head, sorry.  I feel very grateful that so many of you are discussing a potential solution.  To answer the moderator's query, I only have one friend currently who is on an internet phone, so cannot tell any more.  I will ask others though when I meet them to see if they have and then ask them to call me, hihi.

You may have gathered that I'd need very simple instructions as to what I need to buy as and when the time comes; I still pray it wil never happen .....

Thanks all round!!!

G6JPG-0
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Registered: ‎27-03-2024

Re: proposed switch to internet phones in 2025

Sorry we've been confusing you!

As to what you need to buy when the time comes:

If you move your entire contract - broadband and 'phone - to BT, you won't need to buy anything: they supply a router with the relevant hardware (called an ATA - analogue telephone adapter) built into it, so you'd just unplug your existing 'phone from the 'phone socket and plug it into their router. Job done.

If you stay with PlusNet for broadband but use someone else for the VoIP, then the only thing you'd _need_ to buy is the ATA: you unplug your 'phone from the 'phone socket, plug it into the ATA, then connect _that_ to the PlusNet router (leads should be supplied). The commonest ATA seems to be the Grandview HT-801, which is a square box 100 × 100 × 29.5mm (i. e. about 4" square), and seems to cost £35 to £65 (the higher prices if you buy it from the VoIP suppliers, but there should be no setting up if you do that).

Alternatively, you _could_ get a VoIP 'phone; that might actually sound better than your existing 'phone! Trouble is, I can't see any easy way of trying it out.

Finally, there's the option of a software-only solution, which wouldn't cost anything at all (if your computer has a microphone, which it will if's a laptop), but would tie you to the computer.

Some of the VoIP providers offer a free trial - I see one advertised on https://www.voipfone.co.uk/ - so you could try that out now; using the software option, that would cost you nothing, but I don't know if the software option would be inferior to the ATA one where sound quality is concerned.

Devongirl
Hooked
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Registered: ‎21-05-2024

Re: proposed switch to internet phones in 2025

Hi

That's a little clearer to me, thanks so so much.  I won't rush into anything as we seem to have a little time yet, but this has ressured me a bit, again thank you. 

A software only solutionis a bt risky as we are talking about digital speech which is what I struggle with, I think.  So many unknowns still, but lots of good info.

Thank you and all