The coronavirus pandemic has forced the employees to work remotely and so most of the professionals depend on video conferencing platforms to conduct daily meetings or projects.
The video conferencing service that has gained wide popularity during this time is the Zoom. There was a rapid increase in the Zoom connections world wide compared to its usage before.
But along with it came a rush of security issues as well causing fluctuation in Zoom use. Major companies including Google, SpaceX, and NASA have banned the use of Zoom by their staff.
Also, a majority of the Zoom users fear about their data getting leaked through the platform. For users who wish to use other video conferencing options can take a look at some of them.
Microsoft Teams is a built-in video conferencing in Office 365. A user can use a personal email ID and sign up for the free version of Teams. The low tier version allows support for up to 300 members, guest access, one-on-one and group video/audio calls, screen sharing, and shared files up to 10GB per team. More offers are available on the business plans where administrators can have access to security, management, and compliance tools. Files of up to 1TB per user can be shared and collaborated using desktop Office programs and SharePoint Online. Those versions also support online webinars and training sessions.
Skype is another popular product of Microsoft which his familiar to many. It provides a great video chat experience supporting up to 50 participants for an unlimited amount of time for free. It has a call recording feature that any member can use and allows users to save and share the recording for up to a month. Skype is ideal for smaller companies and the users should download the Skype app to use it.
GoToMeeting is a web conferencing service from LogMein. This service has audio and video sessions, screen sharing, and a mobile app for Android and iOS. The standard version allows for up to 150 team members and is offered for $14/month or $12/month annually. The Business plan tier allows for up to 250 participants, offered at $19/month and is ideal for medium-sized businesses. The large businesses can choose the Enterprise plan that connects up to 3,000 users. The pricing for the Enterprise plan is provided directly by GoToMeetings.
Join.me is also a product of LogMeIn team and is great for smaller businesses or those with a lower budget. Free plan includes audio-only meetings with screen sharing available for up to three participants. Paid plans start with Lite at a rate of $10/host per month and allows for five meeting participants and no time limit. The lower-tier version has no video sharing option but has screen and window sharing option. are.
The Pro version which allows up to 250 meeting participants, 50GB of cloud storage, 10 webcam streams, recording options and scheduling is rated at $20 per month. Then, there is a Business edition with the features of Pro plus 1TB of cloud storage, enterprise authentication, and Salesforce integration.
Cisco Webex is a popular video conferencing platform. The free version can be used by anyone up to three users and 50 participants for 40 minutes. It also features HD video, screen-sharing and recording options. The Starter paid plans is priced at $13.50/host per month with 50 attendees; the Plus at $17.95/month with 100 attendees; the Business at $26.95/month and five-license minimum for up to 200 attendees. The pricing for Enterprise plan is available on request.
The Starter and Plus plans allow for additional cloud storage and management features, but the Business Plan and up has single sign-on and support for Microsoft Exchange and Active Directory.
BlueJeans is a smaller, cloud-based video conferencing service that provides high-quality streaming for smaller teams. There are three service options in it which include the Me, My Team, and My Company. Me is priced at $19.98/month per user for up to 50 attendees. My Team is offered for $23.99/month per host, and adds 10 hours of cloud meeting recordings and a common dashboard for up to 75 users. My Company allows support for up to 150 participants and a room system calendar and the pricing is available on request.
AnyMeeting, under Intermedia Unite, provides video conferencing, chat, and screen-sharing on a cloud-based platform that has VOIP capabilities and a high-level PBX system. It is secure, with end-to-end encryption and HIPPA features for all editions. AnyMeeting has Starter, Lite, and Pro options with different prices depending on the number of members in the company. However, until 2021, users can get Pro for free.
Google Hangouts Meet
After the withdrawal of Classic Google Hangouts for G Suite customers in October 2019, Hangouts Meet was started. It is the business version of the regular Hangouts that lets G Suite subscribers to conduct video meetings, but external participants are still able to connect.
The number of participants on G Suite Basic is 100, for Business it goes up to 150, and 250 for Enterprise. Users can use G Suite Enterprise to livestream up to 100,000 audience members and record/save meetings to Drive.
RingCentral provides a free version for up to 100 participants, unlimited one-on-one meetings, 40-minute group meetings, and desktop and application sharing. The next tier is Meeting essentials priced at $14.99/month per user, that allows for unlimited group meetings and 1,000 Call Me minutes. Office Premium, from 34.99/month per user combines calling, messaging and meeting into one, facilitating team collaboration with unlimited video conferences and audio meetings.
Zoho Meetings can conduct webinars, training, and online meetings. It has options for audio, video, and screen sharing, together with phone audio, recording, and calendar invites. The plans start at $10/host per month for 100 participants and 10 recordings. For a webinar, plans start at $19/host per month for 25 attendees and go up to $79/host per month for 250 attendees and 25 recordings.