Even though your team members are spread out in different locations, you can still meet up face-to-face by using virtual meeting applications. Here are the top three most popular options right now. All offer both free and paid options.
- Zoom (www.zoom.us) covers a lot of bases. It’s available for Mac, Windows, Linux, iOS, and Android. The free version allows you to schedule meetings, to hold unlimited one-on-one or group meetings of up to 100 participants (w/meetings of three or more, there is a 40-minute time limit). Other features include whiteboarding, desktop sharing, annotations and the ability to record meetings. Participants also have the option of joining a meeting by phone or video.
- Google Hangouts (https://hangouts.google.com) is ideal for smaller meetings on any desktop or mobile device. It is a tool that supports chatting with up to 150 participants and up to 10 in video calls. Hangouts isn't fancy, it has little in the way of options, but if you're looking for speed and convenience, it should do the job for you. Google Hangouts Meet is the paid version of Hangouts and is only available to G Suite customers. It is best described as Hangouts designed around scheduled calls.
- Skype (skype.com) a familiar name in video conferencing, this cross-platform video chat tool supports group video calling for up to 50 participants. It may be used in a browser or the mobile app. Handy features include screen sharing, live conversation subtitles, and the ability to record chats. If you need to hold video meetings with more people, Skype for Business (a paid-for upgrade) allows chats with up to 250 participants, Office integration & stronger security options.
~ Virginia Wright
Emerging Technology Associate