When the coronavirus crisis hit in 2020, many businesses were forced to work remotely, with the large majority having to work from home. One of the biggest tools that facilitated this change in working was video conferencing.
After having seen the benefits that video conferencing has to offer compared to in-person meetings such as reduced travel costs and flexible working, some companies have chosen to stick with this new way of communicating.
If you’re thinking about making video conferencing a long term solution, keep on reading to find out what your business needs in order to facilitate this.
What You Need for Video Conferencing
A Fast Internet Connection
There’s nothing worse than joining a video conference only to spend half the time repeating yourself and struggling to understand what the other person is saying because your internet is too slow.
If you find that your video keeps buffering and the audio is out of sync with the video, the issue is likely down to your business or home network, depending on where you take the call from.
To check your internet speed, you can run a test online for free by searching ‘internet speed test’ on Google or by using an alternative speed checking website.
This will essentially tell you how quickly you can upload or download data using your internet connection, measured in megabits per second (Mbps).
What is a Good Internet Speed?
The best internet speed depends on your individual needs. For example, if you will only ever have 2 household or office members connected to the internet whilst you’re working, you won’t need as high of an internet speed as a large office with 30+ users connected at any one time.
10 - 15 Connected Users
For an office or household with 10 to 15 connected users, your internet download speed should be around 150 Mbps in order to allow frequent cloud computing, data backups and video conferencing.
15 - 20 Connected Users
If your office has between 15 to 20 connected devices, your internet speed should be at least 250 Mbps to allow for seamless video conferencing.
20 - 30 Connected Users
For offices with 20-30 connected users, you will need an internet speed of 500 Mbps.
30+ Connected Users
If you run an enterprise with over 30 members of staff on your network, you will require an internet speed of 1 Gbps (1,000 Mbps) to allow speedy working and connections without interruptions.
How Can I Increase My Internet Speed?
If you find that your current broadband isn’t fast enough, you can either reach out to your current internet provider to see if they can find a resolution to increase the speed or you can switch provider. Check your area and shop around for the best download speeds and prices.
High Quality Audio Visual Solutions
Now you have a high speed internet connection, you’ll need a high quality audio visual solution so you can see and speak to your meeting participants.
Conference cameras are designed to be installed in a permanent location in your office, such as a meeting room, alongside a TV or large screen that shows the other speaker.
They are much higher quality than regular webcams and in-built cameras on laptops, designed for office and low-light locations. They also display a wider view, so multiple people in a meeting room can be involved on just one end of the call.
These conferencing webcams use multiple microphones and technology such as beamforming to focus on the voice of the individual speaker without picking up on background noise or feedback.
At DMS, we offer a wide range of conferencing solutions, including conferencing webcams and digital screens that accompany them.
We also provide bespoke technology bundles to suit all of your business’ needs, so if your staff require laptops or tablets with in-built cameras for conferencing whilst remote working, we can offer a fixed monthly price for the top tech brands such as Lenovo, Logitech and Polycom.
Video Conferencing Software
So now you have the speedy internet connection and high quality webcams, you’ll need effective software to carry out your video conferencing calls.
Some of the best video conferencing software includes Zoom, Microsoft Teams and Google Meet. Let’s take a look at the pros and cons of each.
Zoom became incredibly popular during the coronavirus pandemic when many businesses were made to work from home and relied on video conferencing to keep in touch with their team.
Zoom offers both video and audio-only conferencing and one of the biggest advantages is the ability to record sessions. This makes Zoom an incredibly useful tool for virtual lessons and interviewing, allowing users to go back and view them again later.
Another great feature of Zoom is the ability to share your screen and participant control, making calls much more interactive.
Meeting participants can either download the desktop app on Windows and macOS devices or the mobile app on Android and iOS. It can also be run in a browser, making it easy for those even without the app downloaded to join the call quickly with a link.
Zoom’s free tier allows unlimited one-to-one meetings, however, group sessions are limited to 40 minutes and 100 participants. Paid plans start at £12 a month per host.
Microsoft Teams is intended for anyone who uses Microsoft 365 regularly and is designed for more effective working together through the use of integrated Microsoft 365 apps. It’s easy to arrange meetings in your calendar and call team members easily.
Teams also offers screen sharing and call recording capabilities like Zoom, and cand host calls with up to 10,000 members.
In order to join a Teams meeting, users must have a Microsoft account which is free to set up and the application is compatible with Windows, macOS, Android, iOS and browsers.
Microsoft Teams’ free tier allows all the basic features such as unlimited chat messages and up to 300 participants on a video call. The paid version is included as part of the Microsoft 365 Business plan, where the basic plan starts at £4.50 per month.
In 2020, Google rebranded Hangouts Meet to just Google Meet, a video conferencing solution that is built into Gmail, YouTube and Google Voice.
For anyone with a Google account, you can host a meeting with up to 100 participants for up to an hour per session. Of course, when this hour is up you can restart the meeting, however this is inconvenient and can be disruptive.
In order to host meetings for up to 24 hours with more participants, you can subscribe to Google Workspace (formerly G Suite) for as little as £4.14. For call recording, which is automatically saved to Google Drive and up to 150 participants, you will need to upgrade to the Business Standard package for £8.28 per month.
At DMS, we work with Zoom and Microsoft Teams to deliver the best video conferencing software solution for your business.
Why Choose DMS for Your Video Conferencing?
At DMS, we believe in creating innovative digital solutions that simplify, modernise and create growth within businesses. An important part of growing your business is maintaining healthy relationships with employees and clients by communicating effectively.
Thanks to our advanced and easy-to-use video conferencing solutions, you can do just that.
We offer a range of incredibly affordable services to keep your business costs down whilst simultaneously helping you to save and make more money.
Additionally, the great news is that it’s possible for just one partner to take care of it all with DMS One: your IT consultancy and cloud services, audio/video equipment, software solutions, reprographics and print management solutions.
If there are any issues, we’ll be ready to tackle them fast. That’s the beauty of having a team that can take care of it all
For more information, get in touch with one of our friendly team members today.