With new technology comes a new era of telephone service. VoIP (Voice Over Internet Protocol) has provided affordable service but not everyone is aware of the complications that comes with using 9-1-1. The FCC (Federal Communications Commission) offers the public a handful of information pertaining to VoIP telephone service and we have provided some here.
Because VoIP service works differently from traditional phone service, consumers who use it should be aware that VoIP 9-1-1 service may also work differently from traditional 911 service. VoIP service providers, in response to FCC action, are making progress in eliminating these differences, but some of the possible differences include:
- VoIP 9-1-1 calls may not connect to the Public Safety Answering Point (PSAP), or may improperly ring to the administrative line of the PSAP, which may not be staffed after hours, or by trained 9-1-1 operators. It is important that you do a test 9-1-1 call when you start your new VOIP service.
- VoIP 9-1-1 calls may correctly connect to the PSAP, but not automatically transmit the user's phone number and/or location information.
- VoIP customers may need to provide location or other information to their VoIP providers, and update this information if they change locations, for their VoIP 9-1-1 service to function properly.
- VoIP service may not work during a power outage, or when the Internet connection fails or becomes overloaded.