Remote working has been known for a few years already, but only a minimum number of companies or organizations have offered this kind of opportunity to their workers. But today, it’s been widely recognized since last year due to the Covid-19 pandemic. It is not just for employees working remotely but also for students continuing their studies and education.
Our company has also been using a meeting platform even before Covid-19 as the company used to have two offices and the company president is also residing abroad, and so we are using a video conferencing and a communications platform to connect with all the employees.
So here we have listed some of what we think are good video conferencing applications/software used by working professionals and students, and also what we would recommend.
1. GOOGLE MEET
So we choose Google Meet as the 1st in our list because this is the easiest one to find and navigate. Also, if you already have a gmail account, you don’t need to sign-up to be able to use Google Meet as this is one of the services of Google and is even sync or integrated with other Google services. It has all the functions that I think are necessary for meetings and conferences, and the best part is, it’s FREE to use! But, if you have a big business and many employees and want to utilize all the features of Google Meet, you can upgrade to their Google Workspace Essential or Google Workspace Enterprise, there’s quite a long list of features you can benefit from.
Right now, is one of the most popular video-conferencing applications for businesses and classes and even personal gatherings. It was said that it is one of the most downloaded mobile applications since the corona-virus outbreak and it’s record downloads for first time users still continue to increase. Personally, I’ve never even heard of this application before, but look at it now, it became famous overnight! You can also use the app for FREE or switch to their Upgraded Plans: Pro, Business and Zoom United Business.
3. SKYPE/SKYPE FOR BUSINESS
Who doesn’t even know Skype? This, I think, was the first video conferencing application that I had known since cell phones and computers and literally technology became widely known to the world around probably 2003-2006. They had a long history and overtime has just continuously been evolving adding new features, updates and other stuff. They’ve been working hard to keep up with the latest and newest technology and competition.
What is the difference between Skype and Skype for Business? Well, Skype is the consumer version and it’s free but only caters to a limited number of users, while Skype for Business is a paid application and can cater to more participants and with better features than of that regular Skype.
4. MICROSOFT TEAMS
This one for me has quite the professional look and is part of Microsoft 365. Moreover, if you are handling different groups, you can create different channels through this one application. And it can cater from 100 to 10,000 participants! That’s a large number of participant capacity in one app! You can continue to do your work and get updates from your Team. Documents and/or attachments are in one place and you can easily search for a topic or files you have shared. You can also integrate third party applications or cloud storage like Dropbox, for example. We can use the app for free and they also have paid plans: Microsoft 365 Business Basic, Microsoft 365 Business Standard and Office 365 E3.
5. CISCO WEBEX
This application might kinda look the same with Microsoft Teams interface, but they have their own unique differences too. The application however is known for its security, it is to be expected though because the maker itself, Cisco is a well known company for it’s IT/Computer networking products, a technology conglomerate operating worldwide. So, many medium to big enterprises may choose Cisco basically because it’s a well-built software with great features.
To use the application, you can get a 30-day Free Trial, but after the trial period ends, you’ll need to subscribe to their monthly plans to continue using the app. Depending on the features you need, they’ve got Starter, Plus, Business and Enterprise.
What made me interested in this app is its feature where you can do keyboard and mouse sharing allowing you to give or take control of your meeting. They also established quite the security to make sure that you experience a worry-free meeting.
For first time users, there is a 14-day Free Trial and if you want to continue using the application, then, you will need to subscribe to one of their 3 plans: Professional, Business and Enterprise.
7. ZOHO MEETING
All the main features needed for online meetings and webinars, they’ve got it all as well. They even claimed to be an alternative to Zoom and GoToMeeting. You will have a 14-day Free Trial for first time users. After that, plans you can subscribe to their monthly or yearly plans and the cost depends on the number of participants, therefore, you may need to incur cost more if you have many participants/attendees.
8. RINGCENTRAL OFFICE AND GLIP
What’s the difference between RingCentral Office and Glip? Glip is much cheaper than the other. If you have a small team and only need the basic online meeting features, you can use the free version Glip Pro, but for more advanced features subscribe to Glip Pro+. The cost will also depend on the number of participants but the cost is still lower than the RingCentral Office, as it offers much more advanced meeting, communication and collaboration features than the Glip.
In today’s technology, more and more communication tools are created and developed, it’s only a matter of time for other tools and softwares to be known and the more developed, easily accessible, inexpensive, creative and advanced, the more chances of getting recognition and fame from the users.
Well, no matter which application, platform or software you used, could be one listed above or not, truly depends on the features and functionality that you or your business needs, and it’s tough to decide when you know these applications have exceeded what was expected from them and even go over and beyond to make the customers satisfied. One way or another, they all have the same purpose, to make global connections and communicate with your people.