SIP is a protocol that gives you a unique identification (a SIP number or address) on the Internet that you can use as a phone number or email address to make and receive voice calls for free to any other SIP user worldwide, or for cheap to any other landline or mobile user. Here is how you can register for a SIP account.
- Choose a SIP service. The first thing to do is choose a SIP service. There are plenty of those out there. You can choose a free SIP account as a beginner, and (or) you may opt for a premium SIP account if you want the additional features and by-services associated with it. Here is a list of free SIP providers, from where you can get free SIP accounts.
- Go to their register page. Once you have spotted your service, use your browser to go to their Web site and look for the link that takes you to the register page. It should normally be near the ‘login’ option. Once on the page, you will be presented with a form that resembles that of any other registration you do on the net, like for an email address.
- Decide on a username . Just like for an email address, you want the username you choose to be something as meaningful or as funny or as spiritual or as intelligent or as inspiring as your mood wants it to be. In other words, you get the full choice. With one limitation, though: the username needs to be unique, and you are very likely to run into the case when what you choose is already taken. The username you choose will then be part of a SIP address, which resembles an email address with the @, like for example, email@example.com.
- Choose a password. This should go without explanation, since if you went as far into technology as wanting to use SIP for communicating, you must have handled with passwords and maybe have learnt certain dire facts the hard way. If this is not the case, read this guide to choosing a good password.
- The rest goes as usual. And that includes any information the site may require from you. Some services aren’t very curious and after filling a few text fields, you are set, but some others are quite finicky. You need to know that certain pieces of information are important for SIP servers. These include the time zone and a valid email address. Also, to make sure that you are not a machine (or an engine used by hackers), there is the captcha entry. Also note that a valid email address is essential since your full SIP credentials will be sent to that. There are many SIP services that require you to have, as they call it, ‘real’ email address, not Yahoo or Hotmail and the like. Now this makes like a bit more difficult. I usually turn away from them, because I am not giving my corporate email address to a site offering free service.
- Submit. Make sure that it goes well at the first submission, since the second chance may never complete. I have had the unpleasant surprise with many services with which I have tried to register. For instance, with one service, upon resubmitting (after correcting the mistakes), it says that I cannot register from the same computer twice!
- Check your email. In most cases, the full credentials that you need to configure your SIP phone will be sent to you via email. That email is important, and make sure it does not get dumped into the Junk folder, as was the case with the last SIP account I created. The information that you will have to save concerning your account are the following:
SIP address, e.g. memyself@thatsipservice,info
Username: e.g. memyself
Domain/Realm: e.g. thatsipservice.info
Outbound proxy: e.g. proxy.proksi.com
XCAP root: https://xcap.proksi.com/xcap-root
The email may also contain some useful information on how to access your account and change things there, how to configure your SIP software or hardware phone, and other technical information.
Once you have a new SIP account, you can configure it with a SIP softphone app and start enjoying free VoIP communication. You will want to read these: