A survey by Computing Which? has concluded that the net represents the future of consumer voice calls, but there are still issues with the services on offer.
Computing Which? tested several of the big players – Skype, Yahoo! Messenger, Sipgate X-Lite, Google Talk (trial), MSN Messenger, and Babble.net. All of the services allow you to call other PC users with the same software without charge, with most offering cheap rate calls to landline numbers. However, the Which? team also considered how easy it was to set up a service, their effectiveness and ther features on offer.
Skype scored well for set-up and "exceptional voice clarity", while, Yahoo! Messenger was priased for its range of features including the option of landline calls, webcam chats, instant messaging, voicemail, and conference calls. Google Talk did less well, criticised by Which? for shortcomings to its audio wizard that mean audio level indicators only kick in once a call has been initiated. And Babble was criticised for "poor help files and software bugs".
According to Computing Which? editor Jessica Ross: "Using your PC as a phone can be so cheap – often even free – that pricey landline and mobile bills could be in danger of becoming extinct. With mobile phone services entering the broadband market, VoIP looks set to be the choice of the future."
What do you think of your VoIP service? Is the landline doomed? Let us know your thoughts.
Via The Register