Teleconferencing is a form of interactive communication that involves people in different locations using a set of transmission mediums. This method of communication is widely used in virtual organisation meetings as well as in learning institutions. With teleconferencing, you can hold meetings and interconnect with other people at the comfort of your office. In fact, it’s one of the efficient methods of running a business. Meetings play a significant role in running organisation operations. However, looking at the traditional ways of holding meetings, it’s evident that a lot of time is wasted in between moving from one station to another. In other instances, a person has to spend hours and even days travelling to a meeting point. Instead, a simple teleconference would have created a meeting point between those two parties.
It is estimated that by 2020, up to 50% of conference rooms will have video communication systems. This is a promising news especially for businesses that operates on limited resources. Meetings that demands face-to-face communication can significantly benefit from this medium. In general, there are four types of teleconferencing, and they include.
Audio teleconferencing also referred to as conference calling is a form of communication that makes use of phone services or other dedicated conference networks. In some companies, they have installed network systems that allow users to pick up the phone and participate in a conference call. With various telecommunication service providers, businesses and also individuals can subscribe to a network of choice and enjoy holding an audio meeting. However, these systems are charged and depending on the number of participants, and the duration of the call, prices tend to vary. This kind of communication is highly preferable since it doesn’t require special software or any device configuration to conference a call.
Video conferencing is another popular mode of communication platform. Initially, this mode of communication was facilitated by a camera and monitor. It required both parties to have these fixtures installed to enable the meeting to take place. But nowadays, modern video technology and the spread of Internet has made things a little bit easier and more efficient. Provided there’s an Internet connection, video conferencing can take place virtually anywhere. It is estimated that 9 in 10 remote employees feel more connected to their colleagues via video calls. However, privacy is always an issue whenever the internet is mentioned. Hence the need for robust security measures, which often involves data encryption. Unlike audio calling, video conferencing is relatively expensive and requires a host of devices and interconnections for conferencing to be successful.
Web teleconferencing is also known as webinars. This is an interactive teleconference platform that delivers visual information coded in graphics, video, audio, live performance, documents and alpha-numerics. Here, participants share data stream from one computer to another simultaneously. For instant communication, webinars are very useful in linking more than one party. Users can contribute, ask and answer questions while the presenter is still moderating the entire session.
In web conferencing, costs are computed in various ways such as per session or per minute fee, while other have a fixed rate for active users.
With the dawn of the internet and the ever dynamic technology, more teleconferencing options can be anticipated. However, replacing these three platforms, audio, video and web, it will take some time. Before you embrace any teleconferencing platform, you need to look at factors such as the number of participants, cost, installation, maintenance among others.