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For business communications, video conferencing extends the one-on-one facility of a video call to a meeting comprising dozens or even hundreds of participants. And with the tools available through VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) telephony and Unified Communications (UC) systems, these gatherings can be interactive and collaborative.
VoIP or Voice over Internet Protocol harnesses the power of IP (Internet Protocol) to transmit digitized packets of voice, video, and other kinds of data around the globe, at the low-cost rates associated with internet communications. With a basic hardware setup and adequate internet connectivity, you can host or attend video conferencing sessions from a desktop computer, smartphone, or other mobile device.
For effective video conferencing, each participant ideally needs to have at least the same connection speed as everyone else on the call, and there has to be sufficient bandwidth available to cope with the anticipated volume of visual and other data being transmitted.
As video conferencing has grown in popularity over the years, and especially the more recent months due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the market in tools and services has expanded. Video conferencing packages are available to enterprises large and small, with options including hardware-based systems, software suites, and virtualized systems hosted in the cloud.
Besides the cost benefits of technologies based on VoIP, video conferencing offers the advantage of visual communication, when compared with voice or email correspondence. Being able to see the people you’re interacting with gives you the opportunity to read and interpret nuances of expression and body language.
Video conferencing and the tools and features associated with it also provide a number of other advantages.
Especially with a virtual or software-based system, video conferences can be organized at very short notice. This enables businesses to respond rapidly to changing market conditions or other situations, and schedule meetings to discuss vital issues or what pre-emptive actions to take, in near-real time.
Video conferencing systems may also provide tools for recording each session, so that anyone who wasn’t able to participate in the meeting directly can call in and view a transcript of what happened at the event.
You can quickly organize and hold a video conference from a single venue, inviting participants from all over the world. With prior knowledge of when the meeting will take place (which can be done via email or instant messaging) and access to the right equipment, there’s no need for anyone who’s invited to leave their homes or offices.
So with video conferencing, you eliminate the costs for transportation, hotels, or meals. Entertainment expenses for the conference participants also don’t come into it.
And in the current situation with coronavirus, where physical gatherings of large numbers of people are being actively discouraged, video conferencing is an ideal way to reduce the health risk, and overcome movement restrictions.
Changing work practices and employment patterns mean that many organizations have workers on flexible timetables, on the road, or “telecommuting” from remote locations. Video conferencing can provide a common venue for everyone to meet, with the visual element allowing a level of interaction that wouldn’t be possible with email, chat, or voice communications.
Video conferencing can be combined with the tools available on a Unified Communications (UC) platform, to give participants access to features like screen sharing, interactive whiteboards, and private chat rooms. You can use these options to demonstrate new products, explain new processes, and impress potential clients.
Eliminating the need to travel cuts out the energy consumption, air pollution, and carbon dioxide emissions resulting from long-haul flights, driving, and extended stays at hotels.
By making meetings virtual, video conferencing also eliminates the production of waste from paper, printer ink, toner, plastic water bottles, and non-recyclable containers for food and refreshments.
In several ways, video conferencing gives businesses a competitive edge:
net2phone provides you with everything you need to run your business communications successfully at scale. From robust voice features and powerful messaging tools to video conferencing, powerful analytics, and dashboards – net2phone has you covered.
net2phone offers a hosted VoIP platform with a self-service online administrative console that enables you to respond to changes in your business, and make updates quickly and easily 24/7.
If you’d like to know how net2phone’s business communications solutions can facilitate your video conferencing, contact one of the net2phone experts.