Talking Technology: Kenya VOIP Systems
In Kenya, VOIP is becoming a common telecommunications feature - even though you might not think of high technology with regards to that country! VOIP is the latest form of communications, and the name is short for Voice Over Internet Protocol.
The concept is basically simple, that voice signals are sent through Internet connections rather than traditional phone lines, resulting in lower costs for the caller (provided the company offers VOIP services). In the past, VOIP calls would have unreliable sound quality, but with today's technology, a VOIP call can be indistinguishable from a call on conventional phone lines.
Within Kenya, VOIP is offered by a number of phone carriers, and is becoming a fairly common service. A number of ISPs and phone companies have some kind of VOIP service available. Many of these services are geared towards business use, but are something to look into for personal phone plans as well.
Yello is the name of the VOIP service provided by AccessKenya, a corporate ISP company. They have several different business-oriented VOIP solutions to help streamline telecommunications. VOIP calls can be made through existing phone or even PBX systems.
Their VOIP options are a bit more limited than some other Kenya providers, but are still an option for long-distance calls. Calling cards are used to make VOIP calls, using a rather long string of card numbers, pin codes and phone number.
Safaricom is a large wireless provider, that offers VOIP services from your mobile phone in Kenya. VOIP service is accessed simply by dialing 888 and the complete phone number (with country code). You can call other mobile phones, or fixed land lines.
The VOIP plans at Swift Global include free calls between other Swift Global VOIP customers, which can be very cost effective for business. No special equipment is needed, as VOIP calls can be made through your existing phone network system.
Skype is not a VOIP service that's limited to Kenya, but one that is available around the world. It's particularly popular with individuals (rather than businesses) who already have access to high-speed and broadband Internet connections.
With Skype, users can make free phone calls to other Skype users, even international calls. Rather than use the phone, the service is designed for computer use, with speakers and a microphone. The software is even free to download, making it a very attractive option to expensive overseas phone calls.
The Kenya VOIP industry is growing rapidly, and is a good illustration of how times are changing in this East African country.
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Calling in Kenya
Kenya Travel: Practicalities
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