Have you ever received a phone bill that's so colossal you've considered ripping the landline out of the wall, or relying solely on your mobile phone? Then maybe it's time to think about looking at your options - specifically, looking at whether VoIP might be a better alternative.
'But what about the costs?', we hear you ask. Well, we thought we'd set the record straight by comparing the two, so that you can make an informed decision for your telecommunications future. Let's see what you'll be paying under both VoIP and landlines, and more importantly, which costs less.
If you're setting up a landline, you could end up spending up to £125 on a connection fee - that'll connect your landline to the grid, so you can actually start making calls. Even if your house is already connected, there can still be a charge of £50 to get reconnected.
Depending on your VoIP provider, the first cost you'll have to pay will be for the VoIP box. These cost anywhere from £20 to £50, although some, such as Skype, won't cost you a penny.
Whether you're sticking with a landline or moving to VoIP, you'll still have to pay a line rental charge - since you'll need a broadband connection to connect VoIP calls. On top of that, you may have to pay your VoIP provider an annual subscription fee of around £25 a year. It might sound like extra costs, but if you use a phone regularly, you'll end up paying more than that for your calls from a landline.
If you have a BT Business line, not only do you pay for the call itself, you also have to pay a a 9p connection fee. That's on top of the cost of the call itself, which can cost as much as 10p per minute. So that's 19p per minute to make a call. With VoIP, there are no connection fee charge, whether it's a business line or not.
Per Minute Costs
A call to a UK mobile phone costs around 12p per minute and 10p to call landlines. On top of that, you'll be paying almost 16p for the call set-up fee, a one-off cost that connects you. That's something you won't pay for using VoIP, where calls costing a pretty solid 1p per per minute - with no set-up fee.
Where VoIP really comes to the fore is in international calling costs. Say you want to call your mother in Morocco, your aunt in America, or your friend in France - with a standard BT line without any subscription packages, the per minute costs break down as follows:
Landline - 80p
Mobile - £1.10
Landline - 40p
Mobile - 70p
Landline - 20p
Mobile - 20p
And how much for a VoIP call? If you use VoIP to call an international landline, it'll cost between 1p - 2p per minute to place a call to the USA. But, certain services, like Skype or Viber, offer free Skype-to-Skype/ Viber-to-Viber calls - so you pay absolutely nothing, no matter where in the world you are.
Packages are available from both landline and VoIP providers. This means you pay a flat monthly rate, and get free calls at the weekend, or unlimited calls to mobiles. Unlimited landline calls anytime with BT costs an additional £7.50 per month, with mobile calls still costing 6p per minute (As well as that 16p set-up fee). A similar package with a VoIP service will get you around 500 free minutes - with no set-up fee and free calls to VoIP users.
- Basic line rental required for both landline and VoIP
- Annual subscription for VoIP, depending on your service
- Per-minute connection fees for landline business lines / No connection fees for VoIP
- Cheaper international calls with VoIP
- No one-off set-up fee with VoIP
- Free service-to-service calls on VoIP network
Both landline and VoIP services have costs that you'll need to factor in, but whether you're a regular phone user or not, VoIP can be just the change you're looking to make, to prevent another outrageous phone bill dropping through your letterbox, and to make more calls for less.
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