digital phone : Computer Hardware Buyers’ Glossary
- digital phone
Digital phone is phone service where the voice is converted to digital for
transmission. The advantage is no-static and consistent quality.
VOIP (Voice Over Internet Protocol) is a type of digital phone
service that uses the Internet to transmit the information. Its drawback is cut-outs
when the Internet is overloaded. Shaw digital phone service works much the same way
except that the data itself is transmitted over a separate private digital network
where they can guarantee it will not become overloaded under normal circumstances.
Shaw-type digital phone service is cheaper than land lines, especially for long
distance, but not as cheap as VOIP.
It works with security systems and apartment door entry systems. The installer has
to hook up a pair of lines from your phone jack to the Enterphone box. It handles
911. You leave your same extension phones plugged into the
same wall outlets as before. Shaw installs a modem, much like the one for cable TV or
Internet access, to attach your phones to the coax hookup. Even on the basic package
you get bundled caller-id and free directory assistance. The only major limitation is
you cannot call 900 numbers and you cannot accept collect
calls. Many might consider this an advantage. You can keep your old number. You
number can be listed or unlisted in the Telco paper phone book and 411 directories listings. You can list only one name, unless you make
separate arrangements with the telephone company.