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Understanding Cloud-Based Video Conferencing
Cloud-based video conferencing services have changed how we communicate. It’s hard to believe there was once a time when you had to travel to meet a new client. Cloud video conferencing is the new normal and remote work is now the standard in many businesses. But with this great paradigm shift comes lots of competition in the marketplace. There are dozens of video conferencing solutions out there. How can you choose the best cloud video conferencing solution?
Selecting the best cloud video conferencing service requires that you understand your options. There are three basic categories of this type of telecommunications technology:

Cloud Based Video Conferencing Service

Traditional on-premise video conferencing
is the oldest type of video conferencing still in use today. These tools are sometimes called room-based video conferencing, because the technology is literally built into the floorplan of a room. Typically, servers and meeting room equipment are installed that run software that must be maintained and upgraded for as long as you use these tools.

Cloud video conferencing

Modern web conferencing solutions
utilizes WebRTC (Web Real-Time Communications) technology to connect two or more locations over the Internet. WebRTC provides the underlying framework for the best cloud-based video conferencing solutions on the market today.

Cloud service

Cloud video conferencing
also uses the Internet to connect people via video and audio streaming. These tools are typically software-as-a-service (SaaS), where you subscribe to the software and dial into it through the Internet. Some providers use WebRTC technology to provide video conferencing as a service (VCaaS)

Cloud video conferencing has increased rapidly in popularity. A study from 2019 showed:

  • 74% of the companies surveyed report video conferencing has increased over the past two years.
  • 84% reported using two or more cloud-based video conferencing solutions.

Video conferencing was increasing even before social distancing made it the new normal during the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020. Business and personal use of these tools exploded as a result.

All of these services are designed to bring people together to communicate.

Benefits of Cloud Video Conferencing
One of the best benefits of cloud-based video conferencing is that you can be up and running quickly with a secure solution. Cloud video conferencing lets you make HD calls from the device you’re most comfortable with, whether it’s a smart phone, tablet, laptop, or desktop. Consumers and businesses use these tools to conduct four basic types of communication:

  • One-to-one conversation is the most common use case for this technology. We use these tools for managers to talk with remote employees and for private video chats. These tools are great for interviewing potential employees or talking with a sales prospect. Unlike a phone call or text, conducting a video conference helps you see the physical nuance of facial and body expressions during the call.
  • Internal team meetings use cloud video conferencing not just to communicate, but also to engage and build rapport. Today you can have face-to-face interactions with team members from anywhere in the world as long as you have the Internet and a video conferencing solution to bring them together.
  • External video calling is now the go-to tool for client meetings. Your sales executives no longer have to travel to meet face-to-face with a prospect. It is just as engaging to conduct a sales pitch online and companies can save thousands of dollars every year in travel costs as a result.
  • All-hands team meetings or seminars are surprisingly easy with cloud-based video conferencing solutions. For companies using online web conferencing solutions, you can invite an almost infinite number of guests to the party. Townhall meetings, public webinars, and user conferences can all be conducted with these technology tools.
  • No matter your industry or the size of your company, the chief benefit of cloud video conferencing is that you can connect people online without the hassle and cost of travel. These communication tools eliminate some of the silos that come from having a remote workforce. Having the ability to look someone in the eye as you work together to make decisions is important for team morale and engagement. This same idea holds if you are a customer account manager working with a client, a sales rep trying to close a deal, or a manager trying to build a team.

    Like all SaaS options, cloud video conferencing solutions offer security and affordability in one monthly subscription plan. Instead of installing expensive on-site equipment, the cloud allows any company with any budget an entry point into video conferencing as a solution for their business. The cloud is the great equalizer, allowing everyone from small to enterprise customers a way to leverage and manage these tools in a secure environment.

    How to Pick the Best Cloud-Based Video Conferencing Solutions
    The cloud has spawned a variety of video conferencing services but they are certainly not created equal.

    • WebRTC solutions embed your video conferencing solution right into your web browser. For everyday use, you won’t need extra plugins; and for those companies that wish to embed a video conferencing solution into their company website, WebRTC makes it possible. Through the use of sophisticated API connections, companies can integrate with the existing technology tools that they use every day in their business.
    • Look for solutions that are HIPAA compliant, even if you’re not in the healthcare field. This signifies the highest level of cybersecurity compliance available, with data encryption in transit and at rest.
    • End-user satisfaction is critical to engaging workers in the use of these tools. Look for solutions that:
      • Integrate well with your current communication platforms;
      • Are easy to initiate, requiring very little support to use;
      • Offer an intuitive interface for any skill level;
      • Make it simple for your IT teams to administer;
      • Are reliable and secure.
    • Customization is important. Using a commercial application is not seamless; instead, look for a company that offers white-label options to embed the video conferencing solution directly into your brand.

    MegaMeeting: Cloud-Based Video Conferencing Solution with WebRTC
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