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Business Intelligence

Web Conferencing or Video Conferencing – Which One Is Better For Business Communication

In web conferencing, a presenter delivers presentation over the web to the geographically dispersed participants. The terms webinar and web conferencing are often used interchangeably. The advanced tools enable presenters to share applications or even entire desktop with participants and can even control the remote computer over the internet. This mode is usually known as application sharing or desktop sharing session.

Web conferencing varies in terms of functionality, cost and complexity. Few systems usually cost hundreds of dollars each month, and would require installation of large software packages individually. They are likely to be dependent on high bandwidth connections and specific firewall configurations. These systems usually require high-level software related demonstrations and are mostly not considered by small or medium sized businesses due to the high costs.

The main thing to notice about web conferencing is that it does not require any special video component. It requires a lesser bandwidth as compared to video conferencing. Web conferences are mostly held in combination with audio conferencing so that participants can hear the demonstration clearly. Few web conferencing, the providers offer Voice over IP (VoIP) technology but majority of corporate level systems use traditional telephone based audio conferencing for ensuring quality.

Video Conference

In video conferencing, cameras are used for enabling virtually connected participants to see the other participants. Video conferencing is also used by businesses in both one to one and other situations.

A dedicated room is set up especially with the aim to hold video conferences. Before the advent of high bandwidth internet connections, signals were carried through ISDN lines. These were just like telephone connections in the way that the caller would dial up and pay for the total time of the call. However, internet has resolved the connectivity issues today but the bandwidth and devices required for holding video conferences still cause barriers for entry.

Advantages of Web and Video Conferencing

Advantages Of Web Conferencing

Following are some of the advantages of web conferencing as compared to video conferencing:

• No equipment needed for access through browser
• Cheaper and reliable
• Less or no software download requirements
• Lesser firewall configuration problems
• Lesser technicalities in set up and usage
• Lower internet bandwidth requirements
• As there is no live video feed, there is no obligation for ample lighting
• Participants do not get diverted by the presentation content due to being able to see each other

Advantages Of Video Conferencing

Following are certain advantages of video conferencing as compared to web conferencing:

• Live video feed so that participants can view each other easily in real time

• Participants have opportunity to be more interactive and can participate through live video. They do not lose their attention because they now have an eye contact and body language that facilitates in understanding.

Both web and video conferencing play a dominant role in reducing business travel costs. Web conferencing has an edge over video conferencing, as it is cheaper and less complex. From the business’ perspective, simplicity is the key as it increases reliability and accuracy that portrays a professional image. Nowadays, majority of businesses are adopting hybrid approach towards utilizing both types of communication tools keeping in view the scenarios.

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    Sadaf Ajmal