It is vital for successful management to hold frequent video calls with remote employees. We hope that this article has been useful in helping you to appreciate the value of video conferencing software in providing your remote staff with a greater sense of inclusion, the opportunity to be heard and to be understood. In addition, it can be an effective tool to resolve any confusion that may arise from written exchanges.
A survey of remote workers has found that an overwhelming 89% feel closer to their team as a result of using video chat. Furthermore, an equal proportion of respondents also believe that Internet-based teleconferencing can lead to an increase in productivity.
Now that you understand the importance of having a reliable video chat application, it is time to look at the details in order to select the best one. Before beginning your first virtual conference, make sure that your internet connection is up and running, in order to ensure a productive and efficient experience.
Hangouts on Air by Google
The online conference is available to all individuals who have a Google account; however, the maximum number of participants in a video chat is restricted to ten.
In contrast, Google have recently launched Hangouts Meet, offering users the opportunity to connect with up to thirty people in an online video chat. This service is accessible from any computer or mobile device, with no need for a Google account. This provides an easy way for people to stay in contact and communicate, no matter the platform.
Google Hangouts is an incredibly useful communication platform for those who utilise other G-Suite services such as Drive, Calendar, and Gmail. With the instant synchronisation of all Google Apps, it makes scheduling and file sharing much more efficient and streamlined.
Regular G-Suite users will find Google Hangouts to be an excellent option for video conferencing. Hangouts Chat allows you to view files stored in Google Drive without leaving the conversation, and the video quality is always excellent, with no buffering or stuttering.
Features that make Google Hangout worth using include:
- Compatibility with the other Google-developed tools in the G-Suite
- Just enter the link to start a Hangouts Meet.
- Google Drive facilitates safe and easy file sharing.
- The Power of High-Definition Video
UberConference has become a popular choice due to its user-friendly interface and comprehensive features. Signing up is quick and straightforward, and it provides a range of beneficial features to help you get started with your conference call.
If you wish, you can begin the process in the usual way, however, they also offer the option of having someone call you at a specified time to guarantee that you don’t overlook or arrive late. As well as phoning, texting, or emailing invitees, you can also have attendees call in (although the free plan does not include a distinct call-in number).
The professional package offered by this company, at a rate of £10 per line per month (or £15 per month), provides up to one hundred participants, allowing for the addition of guests to the conference, and additional features. This package seems better suited to telephone conferencing rather than video chats.
The user interface features a web-based dashboard, which provides an easy-to-use visualisation of the participants in the video conference, as well as the ability to mute any disruptive individuals. This makes it simple to keep track of who is present and who is speaking at any given time.
UberConference offers a range of features that promote collaboration between remote workers, including call recording software and video sharing capabilities. Additionally, the platform allows users to easily share documents via Google Drive, Box, Dropbox, and Evernote. However, some reviews have reported that the video sharing feature can be prone to lag.
One of UberConference’s best features is the easy access it provides to social media profiles like LinkedIn.
The members of our group who tested out UberConference were highly appreciative of its convenience. However, almost all of them also expressed dissatisfaction with the poor sound quality and some minor microphone issues they encountered, which they found to be a major obstacle.
Among its many great qualities are:
- Zero cost for up to 10 people
- Digital High-Definition Video
- Connected social profiles
Zoom’s video conferencing technology has gained immense popularity among business users due to its superior video quality and intuitive user interface. Furthermore, its compatibility with a wide range of third-party applications has further boosted its appeal. The platform has been designed to integrate seamlessly with existing business infrastructures, from cloud-based file sharing and collaboration tools to popular chat applications.
Zoom is now offering a considerable increase in their video conferencing capabilities, with free, unlimited one-to-one video meetings now available, as well as free, unrestricted group video conferences for up to fifty participants. This is significantly more than what is achievable with Google Hangouts and could be more than many people would require.
The Pro plan is the perfect choice for larger teams requiring multiple servers, offering admin control, user management, cloud reporting space and access to their REST API, all for the competitive price of $14.99 per host per month.
The Zoom video conferencing platform offers a particularly useful feature which is the ability to record meetings and sessions. This enables remote workers to review the content of their conference call at a later date and to distribute the recordings among their colleagues. To facilitate this, Zoom provides 1GB of cloud storage for recordings, but due to the vast range of third-party connections it offers, the amount of available storage space is practically limitless.
Zoom, similarly to Google Hangouts’ new Meets feature, enables you to create a unique URL for your meeting. Subsequently, share the link with any remote workers who you would like to invite to attend the gathering.
Attendees who are not part of the regular remote team can benefit from this great feature by skipping the registration process and attending the meeting by simply clicking the link provided. This is especially useful when it is necessary to include remote employees who are not part of the regular remote team in a meeting.
The following are some of Zoom’s most notable qualities:
- The Power of High-Definition Video
- Unlimited freedom of choice
- Modular Third-Party Integrations
- Keeping a meeting log is a good idea.
- Having the ability to “Enter Room” through a URL only
Chime of the Amazon
After an extensive evaluation process, the team unanimously concluded that the Amazon Chime had an exceptional audio quality and a highly intuitive interface, making it easy to use. Furthermore, the Amazon Chime provides a range of features, such as a built-in chat room builder, easy file sharing, video capture, remote desktop access, and more.
Despite our tester reporting that Amazon Chime had “by far the greatest sound quality for all meeting attendees”, unfortunately he was unable to get it to work with Chrome.
Amazon Chime, which is part of the Amazon Web Services (AWS) suite, is an excellent choice when it comes to security. It surpasses the competition and can be relied on to ensure privacy during online conversations and meetings. If safeguarding privacy is important to you, then Amazon Chime should be your go-to solution.
Amazon Chime may not be the most suitable option for those who are looking to avoid incurring any expenses. The free, introductory plan allows for two-way video calls, as well as text and group conversations. However, if you require access to more advanced features, such as video conferencing, then you may need to consider the Pro Plan, which comes at a cost of £15 per user per month.
You may schedule video conferences in advance and share links to Chime In meetings with up to 100 participants using this.
It is impossible to talk about video chat programmes without mentioning Skype. In this article, we will be discussing whether the popularity of Skype has been warranted, thereby enabling it to become a verb.
Despite the cheerful emoticons that are featured in its chat style, Skype is actually better suited for business communications than many people might realise. This is because the popular video-calling service also has a dedicated platform, Skype for Business, which is widely used for professional conversations.
Using Skype is convenient since there are many people who have already installed it; however, both Google Hangouts and Zoom offer the option of a “room” URL, which means users do not have to install the software, thereby negating the advantage of using Skype.
The free edition of Skype offers a comprehensive messaging service and allows up to 25 people to participate in a call; this is more than you would find with Hangouts, but fewer than with Zoom. If you require more than this, the paid version of Skype, Skype for Business, can accommodate up to 250 participants, although this may be excessive for most distributed teams.
If you already have a subscription to Office 365, then you can take advantage of Skype for Business services without incurring any further expense. Therefore, if you regularly utilise Microsoft products, Skype may be a viable choice for you.
This programme is an excellent choice for those who frequently create video presentations for themselves or their remote employees. It is particularly well-suited for webinars, as it features an array of tools designed to facilitate the creation of compelling and engaging presentations.
Unfortunately, there is no free tier available; the most economical plan is $29 per month, which provides access for a maximum of 25 users. However, the great thing about their pricing structure is that all features are included in each tier; the only difference between them is the cost.
Some of BigMarker‘s better features, if you plan on using video conferencing mostly for presentations, are:
- Sharing your screen in high definition through video
- Simple, shareable meeting links that only need one click to join
- Promotion of your company in the virtual meeting space by adding a logo and brand colours
- Save online seminars
- Taking a Poll and Answering some Questions
- Using technology such as email and calendar reminders
If you want to hold a meeting from your website, you may use their API, embeddable, and other developer tools to do so.
Despite this, one of our testers indicated that it may take a while to become familiar with the functions, as the backend was considered to be too complex and not very intuitive for users.
Final score: Zoom
What is the best video conferencing programme for your remote staff?
Google Hangouts is making great strides in its ambition to become the go-to platform for telecommuters. They have recently unveiled two new features, Hangouts Meet and Hangouts Chat, which have been specifically designed to meet the needs of virtual teams and telecommuters. These new tools will undoubtedly make it easier for remote workers to collaborate and communicate in a virtual environment.
If you make use of a variety of Google products, you will no doubt appreciate the seamless integration with the G-Suite. Furthermore, there is very little lag or stuttering in video playback.
Our beta testers found that while UberConference had many useful features, it was more tailored to telephone conversations than web conferences, and this was reflected in the audio quality.
As expected, regular users of Amazon Web Services (AWS) had high hopes for Amazon Chime, and while it does supply a variety of advantageous features, it does not surpass the capabilities of its competitors.
Skype has been relying on its established name to maintain its user base, instead of regularly updating their services to stay competitive with similar programs such as Google Hangouts and Zoom. Consequently, it has become less attractive to potential customers.
However, we wouldn’t recommend BigMarker for your average video conference since it’s better suited for things like webinars and presentations.
None of the other video conferencing services available can compare to the features and capabilities that Zoom has to offer. Zoom has a particularly generous free plan, making it an ideal choice for small to medium-sized businesses who are looking for a reliable platform for their remote developers.
At Zoom, we understand the importance of providing high-quality video and dependable connection for virtual teamwork. This is why we offer these features as part of our service. Additionally, we offer even more options through the integration of various third-party applications. This allows you to customise the platform to meet your specific requirements.
Once your video conferencing system is in place, Works can help you assemble a powerhouse remote team of digital nomads.