In business, the way you communicate is extremely important. It doesn’t matter what else you do, if your communication systems are ineffective then your business will never reach its full height. Cloud technologies have revolutionized the way that businesses think about how they communicate, which has led to the arrival of numerous cloud-based conferencing applications.
The following video conferencing applications are perfect for any business looking for a simple and reliable communication tool to help your business communicate internally and externally within the organization.
Skype for Business
Skype is probably the best-known VOIP app on the market. It is the default choice for anyone wanting to video call with their loved ones. However, while Skype is one of the most widely-used telecommunications applications in the world, it is still often overlooked as a potential business tool. This is probably because we are so used to associating Skype with personal communications rather than business.
Skype for business is free for small businesses (any more than 21 people on the account, and you will need to shell out for a subscription). If you are looking for something to tide you over until you make a more permanent decision, Slype for Business is a solid choice.
Vision Voice’s UCaaS platform is one of the most popular out there for businesses, and their mobile app is very much the ‘cherry on the cake’. When using the app, you can take advantage of all the key features that Vision Voice has to offer directly from your smartphone. Of course, you can make and receive calls through the Vision Voice service, as well as text messages and e-mails.
However, you can also take advantage of some cool features that you won’t find anywhere else. One thing that we really like about Vision Voice’s app is the ability to automatically transcribe voicemails. The app is also able to maintain communications when transitioning from Wi-Fi to mobile data connections, something that many apps fall down on.
You can find out more about the platform and the app by visiting the Vision Voice’s website at https://visionvoice.co.uk/.
The best thing about Join.me is its simplicity. This isn’t the most feature-rich conferencing service available but it is by far one of the easiest to use and access. You don’t need a dedicated app to use Join.me; you can access all the features from your internet browser.
Join.me’s unique feature is known as ‘whiteboarding’. This is just what it sounds like - a virtual whiteboard that you and your colleagues can draw on in real-time. This is fantastic when you need a basic visual aid to supplement what you’re saying.
RingCentral manages to achieve what so many other apps fail to - it combines a rich feature set with an easy-to-use user interface that makes accessing any one of its many features easy even if you have never used it before.
If you regularly use screen-sharing or would find this feature useful for your conference calls, RingCentral is an excellent choice. We’ve yet to find another app that makes screen sharing this easy.
Cisco is one of the oldest and best-known names in the telecommunications industry, and its ubiquity is well-earned. The live streaming capabilities of WebEx are leaps and bounds ahead of most of Cisco's competitors. This is because the platform has been specifically designed with online training and events as a priority. If these features are crucial for your business, then we would strongly recommend WebEx over other options.
Another really cool feature for any business that regularly holds conference calls. WebEx's Call Me is an app-based feature that will automatically phone you when it's time for a conference call. When you answer, you will be patched into the call without having to do anything. This doesn't just take the hassle out of joining conference calls; it also provides you with a useful reminder.
Google's tools have historically been a bit hit and miss. While Google produces plenty of killer cloud-based apps and services, it also has a pretty sizeable graveyard of other apps and services that have withered and died. But when Google gets it right, it really gets it right. Hangouts is proof positive of this.
Hangouts can handle up to 100 users in a single group chat, or 10 users in a video conferencing call. This should be plenty for most businesses, especially considering that you are unlikely to video conference with more than 10 people at once.
Being a Google service, Hangouts also integrates seamlessly into other Google services such as Gmail and Google Calendar. If your business is already making extensive use of Google apps and tools, then adding Hangouts to your repertoire makes a lot of sense.
Hangouts must also surely win some kind of award for their implementation of machine learning within the app. If two users want to organize a time to call one another, Hangouts is able to analyze their respective calendars to automatically arrange a suitable time. It is a simple feature and a very mundane implementation of advanced technology, but we think it's very cool.
Having the right communications infrastructure in place is vital if you want your business to succeed and grow. If you use a poor-quality video conferencing app, it will reflect poorly on your business when communicating with clients and hinder your internal communications. Make sure you choose the right app for your business.