Any method of transmitting human voice over the Internet in real-time or near real-time. There are several parts: 1) A multimedia-equipped PC with special client software will digitise your voice on the client side. This can be accomplished using a voice modem or another method of voice encoding. 2) A direct or dial-up Internet connection allows your voice to be transmitted in packet form to its destination; 3) Connection with the far side is accomplished through IP address search, common servers, or beacons to identify the called party (and “ring” that person’s phone); 4) A similar arrangement on the far end completes the call and allows both parties to speak. PSTN/Internet gateways enable regular phone callers to make phone-to-Internet-to-phone connections. There are both PC-to-phone and phone-to-PC connections.