Use the computer like a phone

What is the way to use my computer to send and to receive calls lik if it was a phone?
If it can help: I have Windows XP, and I am connected in France, througth ADSL 512 Kb.
MainMaAsked:
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EmpKentConnect With a Mentor Commented:
It is different because you are on a different network. If you have a modem there are applications that allow you to use the PC as a phone but then you are using PSTN (and really just using a particularly expensive phone).

Several broadband providers in Canada are moving to offer a modem that you can plug your phone into and use a regular phone for VoIP but that is a specific service and requires specific hardware.

Voice communications on the Internet via a computer currently require you to have similar software installed on both PC's and a reliable Inet connection between them.

Kent
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peakpeakCommented:
Try Skype:

http://www.skype.com/download.html

Note that the one you talk to must have the same software installed. If you want to call to anyone you need look into IP telephony and get an account for it. Check with your telephone provider.

Regards
Peter
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MainMaAuthor Commented:
[Note that the one you talk to must have the same software installed]

So I can't talk to somebody who, for example, haven't got a computer?

[you need look into IP telephony]

What is IP telephony? I heared that it is an integrated Windows tool, isn't it? Where I can find it in Windows XP?
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Scouser007Commented:
I used to use www.dialpad.com
I am not sure if that site is still around or the same, but it allowed me to make long distance calls for free.
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EmpKentCommented:
MSN Messenger has a voice module but the person on the other end still needs the same software. Therefore, yes they also need a computer.

There is nothing installed on XP that will allow you to place a call into the PSTN.

Kent
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MainMaAuthor Commented:
What I don't understand, that the way all these programs works. Why is it different than simple phone calls? Maybe there is a way to make in sort of giving the phone number to the computer's program, and than paying to telephone provider like if I use a phone and not a computer...
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gothicbloodyCommented:
What is IP telephony
http://www.voip-calculator.com/

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MainMaAuthor Commented:
Some entreprises which works with clients (support via phone...) have their agents working on the computer ans speaking with clients through computer too. How do they do?
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EmpKentCommented:
With a dedicated VoIP solution from a vendor like Nortel or Cisco. Installations are most often large and cost several thousand dollars per phone.

They have gateways that negotiate the transition from the PSTN to the software on the PC. You may be able to get a consumer service similar to that from your local telephone provider or perhaps your cable TV provider.

Kent
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