About six per cent of international voice call volume travels over the Internet instead of traditional telephone networks, sidestepping some of the more expensive aspects of cross-border telecommunication, according to a report from TeleGeography Inc.

Two things drive the use of VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol): the cost to carriers for sending a call across a border, and the cost to consumers for long distance calls, said Jason Kowal, president of TeleGeography.

In areas of the world with high settlement rates – charges one carrier passes to another for accepting a transnational phone call – carriers can use the Internet to lower the cost, he said.

“The biggest route (for VoIP) is U.S. to Mexico,” Kowal said, citing the lack of meaningful competition between Tel