VoIP and SIP: The Acronyms of Telephony

When investigating your telecommunication service options, it is very easy to get lost in the weeds.  When acronyms like VoIP, SIP trunking and others get thrown around, it can be enough to make your head spin if you aren’t exactly a techie or familiar with the subject.

However, understanding the technology available to you is important to find exactly what best meets your needs. Don’t worry, we can walk you through it!

We’ll cover the two big essentials: VoIP and SIP trunking; but first, let’s start off slow and go through the “P.”


Understanding VoIP and SIP trunking is made infinitely easier if you’ve got a grasp on Protocol.

VoIP and SIP trunking allow users to use the Internet – which was designed for the transmission of data but technically not voice – for vocal communication. A number of terms are used to discuss transmitting voice over the Internet including: Internet telephony, voice over broadband, broadband telephony, IP communications and broadband phone service. So, whenever you hear these different terms being tossed around don’t worry, they are all basically conveying the same thing.

However, in order for computers and other digital devices to exchange messages and information, a protocol system has to be established.

Protocol is a well-defined format used by developers to exchange consistently understandable messages. These protocols have become an industry standard due to them being an essential to reliable communication.

All VoIP and SIP trunking are is different protocol systems!

VoIP: Voice over Internet Protocol

VoIP services convert voice into a digital signal that travels over the web. Essentially, your average computer or Internet-connected device has the capability of acting as a circuit-switched network, like a traditional land-line phone. If you are calling a regular phone, the signal is converted into a regular signal before it reaches its destination.

VoIP allows for a wider range of communication and a seamless transition from Internet and traditional voice communication. It is usually offered via subscription on a month-to-month basis.

SIP Trunking: Session Initiated Protocol

SIP is capable of transmitting all types of media, not just voice. These “trunks” transmit packets of data, which can include voice and other data, like video. However, unlike VoIP, SIP trunks are a physical connection, making them more suited for intra-business communication.

Between their differences, VoIP and SIP trunks actually go hand-in-hand and are traditionally offered together.

Having a hard time picturing it? Think of it like this: consider the difference in the ability to make just a voice call to the ability to make a video conference call. VoIP services allow for the voice conversation, but transmitting video for a face-to-face over the web would require SIP trunking.

Learning the terminology and functions of your telecommunications technology can be a headache.  But, with the right team at your side walking you through every step it can be a breeze. VoicePro’s customer care advocates, sales team and technicians are all extremely knowledgeable, available and happy to help you with any concerns or questions.

If you are ready to start working with a winning team, contact us or call 314-292-5465 today!