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Acoustic Echo Cancellation for VoIP

There are a number of factors which can cause echoing to occur in a phone call, especially if it is a VoIP call. One of the biggest offenders is called acoustic echo, and you have probably experienced it at some time or other while making or receiving a call. Usually you can hear your own voice about a second or so after you have said something, so you are listening to your own side of the conversation which can be very annoying. It can also happen that the other party’s voice will echo too, and sometimes they both echo at the same time. Between all of the echoes it can be difficult to have a conversation at all, which is generally the whole point of making a call in the first place. But when you understand the causes of echoing in calls and know to ask your provider about acoustic echo cancellation, you have a much better chance of avoiding it altogether and experiencing smooth calls via the internet.

Acoustic Echo Briefly Explained

Acoustic echo is one of the most commonly experienced problems with VoIP phone calls. What happens is the microphone into which you are speaking can pick up signals from the speakers you are using, and those signals are then transmitted to the other party involved in your call alongside your voice. Usually a speaker will notice it because they will hear an echo of their own voice a second or two after they have spoken. It happens to many people and can be very bothersome and distracting. Most services are fully aware of this common issue and have measure in place to reduce and cancel it out entirely. These are referred to as acoustic echo suppression and acoustic echo cancellation. Generally they are at work without your knowledge, and the only telltale sign is that you experience little to no echoing in your calls.

Acoustic Echo Cancellation Method

The software put in place to suppress and cancel acoustic echo can detect the difference between intended voice transmission and unintended speaker interference. It will cancel out the signals received from the speaker so that only the intentional audio is transmitted for the listener. When everything works properly with acoustic echo cancellation, no echoing should occur. Of course, things like overly loud speaker volume and problems with the internet connection can interfere and allow some echoing to get through, but it is a mostly effective method which greatly improves call quality for both PSTN and VoIP callers. If you are experiencing problems with echoes on your vocal communication, it could help to speak to your service provider about the measures in place to reduce and prevent it.

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    Author: Carmelo Speelman

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