When it comes to call quality, V1 VoIP wants our resellers and their customers to hear nothing but clear, crystal quality. To make sure that you understand what goes into proper QoS (read about how V1 VoIP explains Quality of Service), V1 VoIP wants to explain some of the most common quality issues. The two most frequent issues VoIP users come across are jitter and packet loss. But what are they? Let us explain!
What is jitter?
From a customer’s point of view, a jitter means unstable voice flow in a telephone conversation. Have you ever spoken on the phone and heard the echo of everything you’ve said after you’ve said it? That’s a jitter. In some cases, their order might be reversed, too, causing confusion and misunderstanding on both ends. Looking at jitter from the technical side, jitter occurs when voice data packets do not arrive in a steady flow, required by codecs for sustainable playback. Usually, packets are sent from a caller at the same time intervals, imitating the landline connection, but they do not always arrive in the same order or following the same interval pattern.
So what is packet loss?
When jitter rates are especially high they will lead to packet loss. Packet loss is just that: when packets are not delivered at all and thus parts of the conversation are missing. Packet loss occurs either randomly and only by single packets known as “gaps” or in large numbers at once called “bursts”.
What causes jitter?
There are three main causes of connection jitter: First is the wrong application of queuing, as inappropriate storage of voice packets and the wrong order of their transmission can lead to delays. The second is where faulty configuration of a router or a PVC might easily impede connection quality and cause a jitter. The third is network congestion, which might cause irregular spacing between packets.
How to prevent jitter and packet loss
In order to avoid any perceivable interruptions in a conversation, the jitter should be 20 milliseconds or less. As it increases, the connection quality drops. To reduce jitter and ensure higher quality of connection, networks use jitter buffers – devices that collect packets from the caller and send them to the receiving codec in the right sequence and at even time intervals. In case of packet loss, jitter buffers duplicate missing data or adds comfort white noise. Besides using a jitter buffer, companies can examine their networks in order to see what causes the jitter and then either correct the instances of wrong configuration or allocate more bandwidth or use Priority or Law Latency Queuing.
V1 VoIP is dedicated to providing our resellers with information about VoIP termination and origination services, appropriate solutions for small businesses, and useful security tips. Understanding jitter and packet loss is vital to providing a great customer experience which will allow them to get the most of your VoIP technology. Contact V1 VoIP today for answers to your questions about troubleshooting and maintenance assistance.