VoIP in Spain: Vonage, Skype and Other VoIP Providers
Posted by Sammie
VoIP allows you cheap calls home and to receive them for free, but how can you get the service here in Spain? Here we provider information about getting VoIP from Skype, Vonage and other providers via your Internet connection.
When you pick up the phone, the Vonage phone adapter converts your voice into data and sends it through the Internet like an email. Our network sends the call where you want it and translates it back into voice. That means when the person you´re calling picks up the phone, it sounds just the same as any other call. When someone calls you, they dial your number, your phone rings and all you have to do is pick up and answer it. The only difference is the lower phone bills.
VoIP call services there are generally 3 options:
- phone-to-phone: You buy an IP phone, or you plug your ordinary phone into an adapter which then goes into your router and modem. SIPCall and UKPhoneLine are UK-based (giving you a UK phone number); iConnectHere, Lingo, Vonage and Packet8 are USA-based. With Lingo, for example, you pay $20/month and get the IP phone and a USA phone number for free (this number is virtual—it doesn’t matter where in the world you are). Calling is free to the USA, UK, and Spain. The problem is Lingo and Vonage don’t ship their adapter outside the USA. Ideally, you put their adapter between your DSL modem and your router. If your DSL modem and your router is the same unit, then installation is difficult because it has to go through the router’s firewall.
- net-to-phone: You buy a headset and use your computer directly. iConnectHere offers the rates listed above, but without the $20/month and the IP phone. PeopleCall offers 2.3 cents€/minute to UK/USA, 2 cents€/minute within Spain, and 16 cents€/minute to Spain mobile phone, plus a per-call fee. Or see Net2Phone. Note that with PeopleCall, and maybe all providers, you need a public IP. That means if you have your ADSL connected to a router (the router then has the public IP, and the computers don’t), then you need an IP phone or Cisco ATA connected to the router. PeopleCall has their own products to do this, which aren’t cheap. With these products, PeopleCall gives you a new line with a 7xx prefix. Calling between 7xx numbers is free. Between a 7xx number and a non-7xx number, it costs as an interprovincial call would.
- net-to-net: See Skype or Free World Dialup: calls are free. Both parties need to have the appropriate software downloaded (plus headset or microphone and earphones). With Skype you can now use their “Skype-out” service which allows you to call any regular phone line at rates as low as 0.02€/minute. The quality is great if you have decent Internet bandwidth (some say better than international calls to mobiles!). I’ve been using the net-to-net and SkypeOut VoIP service for quite a while.
Good VoIP service is generally not guaranteed unless you have enough bandwidth, ie. you’ll need an ADSL or cable modem connection to the Internet. But if you do, and you can get the equipment, this service can be a real god-send for making cheap calls from Spain to your home country.