Testing VoIP & Google WiFi
GigaOM continues the excellent coverage of their GoogleFi Mountain View testing with a trip to the Hotspot to test Skype and other VoIP services using Google WiFi.
Katie Fehrenbacher and crew headed over to Mountain View with handhelds, laptops and gizmos to check out how well they work in the future of wireless Internet connection and report as follows;
So during another hot daytrip to sunny Mountain View, we took our handhelds and laptops in toe, and spread out our gear under a tree in a city park. First we just tested basic Skype running over a Mac laptop.
The biggest issue is just sitting in a spot with a fast enough connection to the closest access point. After a few tries, we were able to connect and make a regular Skype call to another Skype user online, and managed to get pretty decent voice quality. It’s not as easy or clean as cellular, but it works well enough and it is free!
One problem we noticed with the service is there was a slight lag time between when I called and the listener got the signal. The lag time was large enough to be noticeable. Despite that the call quality was quite clear. Our Pocket PC phones did not play nice with the network, but that might be some configuration issues on our end.
VoIP connection quality and speed is an ongoing problem in WiFi hotspots, but as these services iron themselves out in time so will the adaptation of ‘free’ calling and cellular usage. Again, these tests represent WiFi as a whole, and not just Google, as I among many of my colleagues have experienced similar problems as we try to make free Skype or Google Talk calls from outside of Starbucks.