Whether you are a small business, a medium enterprise or a large conglomerate with offices and branches in different parts of the globe and employing different nationalities in different locations, a web conferencing program is a very useful tool to employ. This allows for you to meet people online and in real time to collaborate, discuss and get approvals.
While it may require an investment, there are some useful tools for web conferencing that you can avail of without costing you an arm and a leg. Here are some of them:
Instant messaging - There are several instant messaging programs that you can subscribe to for free. You can do online chat, enable voice-chat and transfer files, photographs and other documents for later viewing. These programs also have conferencing functions where you can invite participants to join. Some programs allow you to chat within their email program so you do not even need to have a stand-alone instant messaging program to be installed. And some allow messages can be archived for review and sharing later.
VoIP telephony - If you do not need all the added features a web conferencing program offers and just need to be able to talk to the rest of your team on a regular basis, you can just subscribe to a VoIP service. With a few hardware requirements, you and your team can have a teleconference anytime.
Free or with limited features web conferencing tools - You can do a search and look for totally free full-featured web conferencing programs. Some proprietary ones have free versions with limited features. You can make your choice depending on your requirements. Here are some that you can try:
- Mikogo - this is a cross-platform web conferencing program that is totally free for individual or commercial use. Windows and Mac operating systems are supported and features of a web conferencing program are present such as desktop sharing, multiple participants, voice conferencing, and file transfer.
- OpenMeetings - this is an open source web conferencing program. It supports a lot of features with audio and view, desktop sharing, whiteboard feature, and can send invitations and direct links to participants.
- WebHuddle - is another open source program worth trying. WebHuddle has basic features and built-in VoIP system as well recording capability for playback later.
Some web conferencing tools are fully operational but with limited features:
- Vyew - this is a new web conferencing system that is browser-based. It has built-in VoIP and even allows for teleconferencing using a standard phone. The interface is also customizable for your logo display with several colors available. This is limited to ten participants. Some additional features are available for a fee.
- Dimdim - this is a hosted program that is limited to 20 participants, with features like audio and voice, document sharing, desktop viewing, VoIP support, and whiteboard.
- YuuGuu - for a small group of users (maximum of five), this program is ideal. This offers instant messaging, web conferencing, desktop sharing and real-time collaborations.
- Yugma - this program works on Windows, Mac and Linux operating systems. The free version allows for a maximum of 20 participants in a web conference. This can be integrated with Skype.
- Adobe ConnectNow - this program offers the basic features of a web conferencing tool like chat and document sharing that streamline an online meeting.
There are times that a few hours of focused Internet searching will yield good results for you to avail of web conferencing tools that may be absolutely free or with limited features that can answer you and your company's needs for collaboration.