Though international conference calling is not a new technology, it has evolved - for the better! With roots
dating back to the mid-1900s, conference calls once required the assistance of a live operator. Today, callers
from around the globe simply key in a phone number followed by an access code and are immediately connected. This
self-service dialing is but one of the many innovations that have affected international conference calling.
Technological Improvements in International Conference Calling
As with phone calls in general, international conference call quality has improved dramatically. No longer does
a caller on the other side of the globe sound as if he's half a world away. Crystal clear audio and reliable connections
are now the norm, not the exception. Innovations such as fiber optics and improved voice transmission transfer
speeds provide for clearer calls with fewer time delay issues than in the past.
International Conference Calling Access Improvements
It is now easier than ever to host or join an international
conference call. For starters, it's no longer necessary to work with operators to initiate a conference call
and join all of the parties. Instead, participants are given a toll free phone number to call along with the conference
call's scheduled time and access code. When it's time to join the teleconference, each participant dials the toll
free phone number and is prompted to enter the access, or "conference room," code. Once entered, the
participant is connected to the call and can immediately begin speaking to other callers.
Another feature known as "dial out" is common with most international
conference calling services. The host of the call has the option to dial out and connect participants at will.
This is useful when a participant lives in a country that does not support toll free access or when a participant
has not called in as scheduled. In addition, many conference call providers offer automated dial out services where
the host can pre-enter the phone numbers of each participant and schedule the dial out. When the time arrives,
the automated system automatically dials each designated phone number, thus avoiding forgotten calls and often
leading to lower per minute rates (as dial out rates tend to be lower than toll free rates).
Integrated Account Management Features
Managing international teleconferences over the Internet is another technological improvement. If you regularly
host conference calls, you can schedule recurring calls, designate participants, and enter each participant's phone
number via an account management interface hosted online. Depending on the calling plan you have, other account
management features may be available such as call reservations, call scheduling, or call on demand.
A significant breakthrough affecting international conference calling involves MP3 technology. MP3 files are compressed
audio files. Depending on your calling plan, you may be able to automatically record the conference call and save
it in the MP3 format. Recording the phone call and then distributing it to participants and absentees allows everyone
that needs the information discussed during the call the opportunity to hear it, even if they were unable to attend
the live call. Call recordings can be used after the fact in many ways. For example, you can later transcribe the
call or have it translated; you can share the call with other key people; or you can upload the recording to your
Web site or corporate intranet and reach a wider audience.
Telecommunications Technology's Affect on International Calling Costs
Remember when it used to cost upwards of ten dollars a minute for international calls? International calling rates
have fallen dramatically thanks to improvements in technology and increased competition. Even the most expensive
countries have rates under a dollar a minute with many countries costing about a dime a minute or less.
Technology has changed the way the world communicates both online and off. This is true of international conference
calling as well. Improvements in call transmission speeds and quality, easier access, integrated account management,
and useful features such as call recordings have taken teleconferencing to a higher level. Best of all, these improvements
come at a dramatically lower cost than in the past.
Like other technological improvements, international conference calling has evolved dramatically in recent years.
From call quality to ease of access and new features, today's international
conference calls are better, easier, and less expensive than ever.
Find out for yourself just how easy international conference calling has become thanks to the recent technological
advances by teaming up with AIT. Pay as you
go plans with no monthly fees or minimum usage requirements allow you to use the service whenever you need
it. Among AIT's features are: high quality connections, free MP3 recordings, free group dial out, and toll free
support for over 60 countries with dial out support for an additional 270 countries.