A conference phone is a special type of phone that is specifically designed for use in telephone conference calls with several people. In such conference calls, several participants dial in to a virtual conference room and speak to each other or just listen, depending on the nature of the call. The conference phone usually has a keypad to dial phone numbers, as well as a display, but, in contrast to a standard phone, no removable handset. Instead, it is equipped with one or more loudspeakers and microphones to enable comfortable listening and hands-free use. This enables several participants in a room to follow the conversation and make their own contributions to the discussion.
Often conference phones also have speakers and microphones that are oriented in different directions, in order to ensure optimum intelligibility even with large numbers of participants in one room. In addition, volume and microphone sensitivity can be adjusted easily. Depending on the existing telephone connection, there is a range of conference phones available for the various different phone line technologies. Conference phones are available for use with analogue, ISDN and VoIP connections and as system phones for specific phone systems. Some devices also have the option to connect individual, external microphones for even better voice quality. Wireless conference phones that communicate via DECT and WiFi are also available.