In the wake of the ‘lockdown’ conditions imposed in a number of countries in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic, the movements of common people have been restricted within the four-walls of their homes. However, work must go on whether offline or online. Many people are working from home during this quarantine period. Even if the members of an office/business organization cannot join a meeting physically, the authorities can arrange online video conferences to connect people residing in any corner of the planet (with an internet connection).
Read this article to learn about some of the best video meeting apps/software to run home-office successfully during the lockdown period.
Are you looking for a free software/app to arrange video conferences with multiple participants? If yes, check out the ‘Zoom Meetings’. The Basic plan allows you to host a video meeting with 100 participants at maximum. A ‘Participant’ member is an invitee in your scheduled meeting. The participants can join a Zoom meeting (via mobile phone, tablet, or desktop) for free of cost. An invited participant can join a Zoom meeting without having a Zoom account. Each video meeting can continue up to a 40-minute duration.
What is more? Zoom allows one-to-one video meetings without any time constraints. Free users are permitted to share screens with other participants and record the video meeting locally. The popularity of Zoom is skyrocketing in the play store chart it’s amazing features.
However, if you want no time restriction during a video conference, dive into Zoom’s Pro plan charging about $14.99 or 1273.33 TK ($1 = Tk 85 approx.) per month per host. A ‘Host’ can schedule, start and control the settings in a Zoom video meeting. Under this plan, a video meeting with 100 participants can extend as long as 24 hours. Moreover, this plan offers 1GB cloud storage to record and broadcast the meetings.
To facilitate the small and medium-sized business organizations, Zoom offers a Business plan which costs about $19.99 or 1678 TK ($1 = Tk 85 approx.) per month for one host. Under this plan, you can host a zoom meeting with up to 300 participants at a time. In addition to these, choosing ‘Enterprise’ or ‘Enterprise Plus’ plan, you can arrange large scale video meetings with 500 or 1000 participants respectively paying $19.99 per month for one host.
Google never stops surprising us with innovative services. You will find the ‘Google Hangouts’ feature under Google’s cloud-based office/business productivity service ‘Google G Suite’ bundle. The Google Hangouts supports video chat and video calls for an unlimited duration with 10 participants at maximum. With a free Gmail account, you can access the Google G Suite Hangouts.
Recently Google G Suite has been included with the ‘Google Hangouts Meet’ feature which is a modified version of the former ‘Google Hangouts’ facility. This cloud-based collaboration and communication tool can facilitate you arranging video conferences with secured data transmission and high-quality video footage. ‘Google Hangouts Meet’ can be accessed through apps (for iPhone/Android) and any standard web browser (for laptop/desktop).
- G Suite Basic plan costs $6 or 510 TK ($1 = Tk 85 approx.) a month per user. It allows video conferences with 25 people maximum in a session.
- G Suite Business plan costs $12 or 1020 TK ($1 = Tk 85 approx.) a month per user. Under this plan, you can arrange a video meeting up to 50 participants at a time.
- G Suite Enterprise plan costs $25 or 2124 TK ($1 = Tk 85 approx.) a month per user. This elite plan accommodates a video conference of up to 100 participants at once.
Utilizing the Google Drive cloud storage platform, you can record and save the meetings. Google Drive provides 30 GB of storage per user under the ‘G Suite Basic’ plan. However, subscribers under ‘G Suite Business’ and ‘G Suite Enterprise’ accounts can enjoy unlimited storage facilities. Furthermore, subscribing to the ‘G Suite Enterprise’ plan, you can broadcast/ live-stream your video meeting to up to 100,000 viewers through sharing links.
Choose Skype, when you are looking for free software to arrange video-meeting for an unlimited duration. This software is a windfall for running home-office meetings for a small team. Using Skype, you can arrange a video meeting for a team of 50 participants (including host) or less. To avail upgraded features you can subscribe to the ‘Skype for Business’ service.
With an active Wi-Fi connection, you can arrange a video conference via Skype (5.0 or upgraded version). To avail of the video conference calling feature, you need to include a group video-calling subscription while registering your Skype account. Each participant requires to sign up and download Skype apps/software in respective mobile/desktop, which can cost some time and storage space. After installing Skype app/software, you can host a video meeting.
So far we have highlighted apps/software for video meetings. To host an audio conference with your teammates, you can visit the FreeConference.com website. It can be a great communication tool for arranging free online meetings during the quarantine. The service of FreeConference.com can also be accessible through mobile apps for iPhone and Android.
- The ‘free’ plan allows up to 100 call participants via telephone. This tier allows only 5 web participants for video meetings at free of cost. Moreover, you can share screens with participants and use an online whiteboard.
- Paying $9.99 or 849 TK ($1 = Tk 85 approx.) per month, you can register the ‘Starter’ plan to increase the number of video conferencing participants up to 15. In addition to availing the ‘free’ plan features, you can save the audio recording of the meeting.
- To host a video meeting with up to 50 participants you can subscribe to the ‘Plus’ plan which will cost $24.99 or 2123 TK ($1 = Tk 85 approx.) per month. This plan allows you to save both the audio and video recording of the meetings.