Yahoo offers Internet telephone calls

Internet telephony got a boost into the mainstream yesterday when Yahoo announced support for computer-based phone calls on its site. When you use Yahoo's People Search feature, you can click the phone number of the person you find and launch a long-distance call to anywhere in the world using IDT's free Net2Phone software. The person who receives your call can answer on a regular telephone. But because the call runs over the Internet, says IDT, you'll save up to 95% over regular long-distance rates.

Internet telephony got a boost into the mainstream yesterday when Yahoo announced support for computer-based phone calls on its site.

When you use Yahoo's People Search feature, you can click the phone number of the person you find and launch a long-distance call to anywhere in the world using IDT's free Net2Phone software.

The person who receives your call can answer on a regular telephone. But because the call runs over the Internet, says IDT, you'll save up to 95% over regular long-distance rates.

In the March issue of PC World magazine Net2Phone and Internet telephony in general got a lukewarm review (see "Net Phone Still Wrong Number," on the right). The technology is still fraught with frustrations and poor audio quality. But if saving money is important, it may be worth checking out.

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