How to Receive Phone Calls for Free
By Brandon James
Being able to place and receive phone calls free of charge is a great way to keep in touch with friends and family. Voice over Internet Protocol --- or VoIP --- software and services allow anyone with a computer, an Internet connection, and a microphone to place and receive free phone calls straight from their PCs, bypassing the need for costly telephone service providers. If you and your circle of contacts all used VoIP, none of you would ever have to worry about receiving another phone bill again.
Free Calls with iCall
Download and install the iCall application, one of the many programs available that allow users to connect for free via VoIP. With iCall, you can make and receive free phone calls from within the United States and Canada.
Create an iCall account. You will be prompted to do this when you first run the program's wizard. After creating your account, log in to the software and configure your audio settings. At the "Phone test" prompt, you can place a test call to ensure that your audio input and output are both working correctly.
Note your extension. This appears underneath your username in the iCall application. A friend or relative must know this extension to place a free call to you.
Tell your friends and family that when they want to reach you, all they need to do is call one of iCall's many local access numbers. They will be prompted to enter your extension and listen to a brief advertisement before being connected straight to your PC. Phone calls made this way can last only for five minutes, at which point the call will be disconnected. There are no limits to how many calls you can receive, so you can have your friend call you back, listen to another advertisement, and resume your conversation.
Free Calls with Whistle
Download and install Whistle. Create an account when prompted.
Note your telephone number on the top of the application. This number is given to you by Whistle. You cannot choose your own number.
Give this number to your friend so he may call you from any landline, cellular phone or PC. You must be online and logged in to your Whistle account to receive the call.
Free Calls With Skype
Download and install Skype. Your friend will need Skype as well so that the two of you can make and receive free calls to one another. Skype is free and has no limitations when used to connect Skype users.
Create a username and password, then log in to your account.
Have your friend add you to his friends list so that he can call you anytime you are both logged in to your Skype accounts. For him to call you, he needs only to double-click your name, or right-click it and select "Call." Accept the call and talk, free of charge.
Brandon James has been writing short stories and novels since 2004. He's been published on Team Warfare League and the No Currency blog. In 2009, he received his Bachelor of Arts degree in English from the University of Michigan.