There are a lot of good reasons why VoIP phone systems are so popular. They run on the Internet, so you can work from anywhere. They don’t require hardware or installation, so they’re affordable. But, if you don’t have a strong Internet connection, they can present a problem when it comes to call quality.
Thankfully, the reasons behind poor VoIP call quality are fairly easy to fix. In this quick tutorial, we discuss some of the causes of poor call quality, and reveal the best strategies for troubleshooting VoIP issues.
Call Quality Issue #1: Latency
Also known as VoIP delay, latency is the amount of time it takes for sound to leave the speaker’s mouth and be heard by the listener. And if you’re experiencing latency on your VoIP calls, you know how frustrating it can be.
Latency occurs when the data packets that make up the audio in a voice call are delayed. This can happen for a number of reasons. But, the most common culprit of latency is something called a queuing delay. This means that there are too many data packets being delivered, and the interface that receives them (on the listener’s end) is congested.
You can fix this by adjusting the Quality of Service (QoS) settings on your router. Prioritize voice traffic over all other data on your network, and won’t experience latency on your VoIP calls.
Call Quality Issue #2: Jitter
Experiencing scrambled or staticky audio on your VoIP calls? That’s jitter. It can happen when the audio of the call, which is made up of voice packets, is traveling over a connectionless or packet-switched network. In this scenario, each voice packet can take a different route from the speaker to the listener. If the voice packets that make up the audio of a call arrive in a different order than they were sent, you will experience poor call quality.
A jitter buffer can help resolve this problem. It stores all of the voice packets in order for a short time to minimize call quality issues.
Call Quality Issue #3: Dropped Calls
It’s happened to everyone at some point. You’re on an important business call, and at the worst possible moment, the call drops. If you’re speaking, you probably keep talking for a while before you realize that no one is listening.
As frustrating as dropped calls can be, it’s an easy issue to fix. In most cases, dropped calls are caused by insufficient bandwidth. Check with your Internet Service Provider to make sure that you have enough bandwidth allotted to handle VoIP calls.
Troubleshooting VoIP Call Quality Issues
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