Sometimes, people get confused when it comes to VoIP lingo – especially since “VoIP” itself is an acronym. It stands for “voice over internet protocol.” One common point of confusion is the difference between a VoIP phone handset and a VoIP phone headset. That shouldn’t surprise anyone – they are only a few letters off! Once you get down to the explanations, there are even more similarities, since they both perform the same basic function: they allow you to hear and be heard on a VoIP phone call. Here’s a little bit of a more in-depth look at the difference between a VoIP phone handset and a headset:
VoIP Phone Handset
A VoIP handset is basically a phone. You plug it in similarly to the way that you plug in any phone; you dial numbers, listen for dial tones, the whole deal. When you are using a VoIP phone handset, you may not even think or recognize that you are using VoIP. If you are looking for a way to transition people over to VoIP without causing them confusion, choosing a low-key VoIP handset with basic functions is probably the way to go, because it does feel so familiar and can be very user friendly. They are produced by a number of major electronic and phone companies.
How Does a Headset Differ From VoIP Phone Handset?
Unlike a handset, a headset doesn’t go in your hand – you wear it over your head, like a hairband – or, for a better comparison, like a pair of headphones. In fact, it basically is a pair of headphones, with a microphone attached. You plug the headset into your computer and use it with your installed VoIP software of choice in order to place calls. Like VoIP handsets, these are often seen in a professional setting – but they are also very common in homes, with VoIP programs that correspond with social networking sites and online video games (such as World of Warcraft).
Which is Better: VoIP Phone Handset or a VoIP Phone Headset?
There’s no true, general “better” option – it depends on you. If you’re in an office and you need to use your hands while you talk, a headset is better. If you’re lying at home on your bed while you chat with your friends and paint your nails, a headset is better. Then again, if you’re holding conference calls and need to put the volume on speakerphone, a VoIP handset is better. And, if you want an inconspicuous phone that can be held by old and young hands alike, handsets are better. Basically, it all depends on you!