The first Android device I bought was a tablet without any option to add any SIM cards. This meant that I could not call anyone from that tablet as it could not have any access to mobile networks. But since it had WiFi capability, so I managed to add a SIP account in the Android tablet to make calls. Android allows you to makes calls through an internet phone calling account (also called SIP account). These phone calls are made through the SIP (session initiation protocol) and any available data connection like WiFi.
The internet calling feature is available in Android even if your device has a SIM slot to make calls. You can add a SIP account to receive and make calls via internet in Android. Here is how:
- First of all you have to get a SIP account. You can get a free SIP account by registering on callcentric.com. After successful registration, you will get your SIP account number (username), password and server name (usually same as domain name). Note these down before proceeding to the next step.
- In your Android phone, open the phone call interface by touching the phone icon on your home screen.
- Press the menu key on your device or touch the menu icon (three vertical dots) near the bottom-right corner and select Settings from the menu.
- On the settings screen, scroll down and touch on Accounts under the Internet Call Settings section.
- On the Internet calling accounts screen, you can select Receive incoming calls if you want to receive internet phone calls. Then touch on Add Account near the top-right screen.
- Enter your SIP account details. Typically, you have to enter the SIP username, password and the SIP server. There are optional settings too, but you can leave them as is.
- Touch the Save button near the top-right corner of the screen to save the account settings.
- Back on the phone call settings page, touch on Use internet calling to choose when the internet calling (SIP) account has to be used. You can choose to use the SIP account whenever data account or WiFi is available, only for internet calls or ask each time you make a call.
The SIP accounts enable you to have a virtual phone number that you can give to to everyone so that they can call you on that number through any type of phone. There are dozens of free SIP account providers in the world and all of them can give you a free SIP phone number. For example, callcentric.com gives you a US SIP number while Net Telco provides you a whole range of UK phone numbers.