Now, the next biggest component and really the only other major component in a Voice over IP network are the gateways. The gateways are what connect different types of communication networks. So way back in the day, the gateways really all they did was they turn Voice over IP communications into normal telephone calls. So what would happen in the old days is you would have your Voice over IP server and letís say you are on the internal network and you if you made a call from this phone here to this phone right here, it was all IP. It was all Voice over IP. So I would call into the Voice over IP server and then that would route the call to the other Voice over IP phone.
Now, hereís the question. What if Bob is out here in the house? So he has a normal telephone with normal telephone lines, etc. He doesnít have a Voice over IP (VoIP) phone. So what they did is they created these things called gateways. So a gateway, what would happen is if you were calling to an outside line, what these gateways did is they had normal RJ11 telephone connectors on them so you could connect a normal telephone line from the outside world into one of these gateways.
So the telephone line that you have in your house you could connect into one of these gateways. So that gateway would then connect to a normal telephone line and then you could call into Bobís house. So basically what would happen is if you call from your Voice over IP phone, that would get routed through the Voice over IP server, that call would then get routed to a gateway and then that gateway would send the phone call out on a normal telephone line. So the normal, like I say, the normal telephone poles, telephone lines, etc, these gateways connected between the Voice over IP world and the normal telephone world.
Why this was important way back in the day when I was first learning about Voice over IP 10 whole years ago, is because when you work for enterprise companies, see enterprise companies have lots and lots and lots of offices so you may have your one office here in Middle America like the first company I worked for, but then you have a thousand or actually letís say they had 60 different offices all over the country, so they already had to pay for internet connections, T1 connections, to all of their remote offices regardless. So they open up a remote office, they already had to have an internet connection to each one of these remote offices.
Now here was the thing. If you have your billing department, so what we did, we billed customers, we billed lots of residential customers, right? So if that residential customer is sitting right down here, your billing department, so our installation department was here, our installation department was 20 miles away from where that customer lived. But our billing department was all the way back here in Middle America. So if our billing department wanted to call this customer, it would be a long distance charge. And again, when you are dealing with one or two people, this isnít a big deal. But when the customer service and the billing department is a hundred people, thatís a whole bunch of money. So every time they had to call a customer whether itís here, whether itís here, whether itís here, whether itís here, whether itís here from Middle America, it is always a long distance call. So they were always getting charged.
So the initial idea so you understand how Voice over IP works, and this is still how Skype and all these companies work, is what they said is here in our office, we are going to have Voice over IP phones. So we are going to have phones that use our network connections, our internet connections. And then here at this remote office, we are going to put in a gateway that allows us to call local numbers. So thereís a Voice over IP server here and a little Voice over IP server here, this server connects to a gateway, right? So now, when our billing department decides to call this person thatís here, what will happen with the Voice over IP traffic is it will get sent over this T1 line down to the Voice over IP server thatís sitting in our building here, it will get routed as gateway and from this gateway, it is a local telephone call to that client.
So basically, every office had to have telephone lines anyway. In order for them to do business, they had to have telephone lines. They already had to pay for these T1 connections that cost them $500 or $600 a month. So all they did is they installed a Voice over IP system and then whenever they had to call one of these people, instead of having to make a long distance call, so instead of having to make a long distance call from Middle America all the way to Seattle, the call would get routed through the T1 connection they already had to their Seattle office. From the Seattle office, it would get ñ the call would get sent out in gateway that had a local telephone number on it and then call that client. And that saved people a lot of money.
So what is gateway? So the original main thing that they did was they connected the Voice over IP network to a normal telephone network. So a normal telephone, a telephone pole, etc. So that was the main thing with these gateways especially with large companies and when youíre thinking about companies like Sears or JCPenny or Exxon or any. They have thousands of facilities all over the country or all over the world. They could route their telephone calls through the internet connection they already had and then pop out and make a local phone call. Made pretty simple. Now, gateways are used for a little bit more but itís still basically simple as far you are concerned. So now that there are services such as Skype, such as other like Voice over IP services, there are now gateways specially designed so that Skype Voice over IP traffic can now be turned into normal or SIP Voice over IP traffic. We are going to talk about this in a second.
So gateways are still used. They are either used like I say, to connect to the normal telephone lines or for things like if your company or the company you are using is already using Skype phone numbers, you can have a Skype gateway that now will connect you to a SIP Voice over IP system. So these gateways connect different types of communication networks basically. So whether itís Skype to SIP, whether itís SIP to telephone, whether itís telephone to Skype, etc, gateways are what connect these different types of communication infrastructure.
So we talked about servers. We talked about the clients. Now, we talked about the gateways. So those are the major components of the network. Thatís what youíre basically going to go and buy. You buy a Voice over IP server or you will lease one from somewhere. You will buy Voice over IP clients. You will buy gateways, etc.