Video conferencing is starting to edge out teleconferencing in most businesses. Those who use it all the time deny it is because it is just the flashy new way to be futuristic about a meeting. There is definitely a big difference between the two. It’s up to you whether you feel that having a video meeting or an audio meeting is better for your purposes. Among the main differences is the ability to see who you’re talking to, have a more secure conversation, share more information – and the money invested. All of these points should be considered if you’re setting up an office and want to have the best meeting hardware. Keep in mind that many offices still employ both technologies in case a client prefers one over the other.
See Who You’re Talking To
Seeing people you’re talking to is not just a novelty: it can help you to get way more out of the meeting you’re in, according to Quora. Think about the way people react to certain information with body language that you can pick up on. You will not be able to see these if you’re teleconferencing. You might want to see how the people you’re talking to react to an idea you’re floating. If you’re on the phone and you hear silence on the other end, it can be nerve wracking. However, if you’re on a video conference call through companies like Blue Jeans video meetings, you may see they are nodding their heads and excited about what you’re saying. The other great thing about being able to see who you’re talking to is your ability to make sure that they’re paying attention to what you’re saying. It’s easy to put a phone call on mute, but you cannot do the same when you’re on a video call. Even on mute, you can see if the people on the other end are not paying attention.
Secure Your Conversation
Telephone lines are pretty easy to listen in on. By simply attaching a wire to the telephone lines for a business, anyone who wants to can listen in on the conversations. Web conferencing software is a lot more secure for those people using it, according to WiseGeek. There is encryption software built into the platforms developed by companies like Blue Jeans video meetings to help keep your conversations private. The only way you could have the same kind of privacy on teleconference call is if you were to have the conference completely over VoIP lines. In this case, you’re practically using a web conference system anyway. The only difference is that you don’t get to enjoy all of the other benefits that come along with seeing the video and having a nearly face-to-face conversation.
Share More Information
Having a conference call is all about information sharing. It’s why people prefer to hop on a call rather than trying to send out an email. You can convey more in a shorter period of time on a call than you can when you’re writing things down. Also, there’s less room for interpretation when you can discuss the matters and be assured that the other party knows what you’re talking about. However, you can take it a step further when you’re using videoconferencing software, according to IT Business Edge. When using these systems, you can send along data files filled with data through the system.. This allows you to have confirmation that the data has been received without ever having to leave the platform.
Another thing to remember is the people you’re talking to can see you. This means that you can use visual aids. You can express what you mean through the use of graphs and drawings rather than putting all of your stock in your ability to describe something succinctly.
A Look at the Numbers
The numbers have it when looking at the difference between teleconferencing and video conferencing, according to The Small Business Chronicle. The amount you pay for video conferencing tends to be higher than with teleconferencing. The only difference is when you’re conducting video meetings through the use of your computer. At this point, you already have all the equipment you need to have a meeting. In fact, you may have to spend more to get involved in teleconferencing, as you cannot conduct a teleconference without having to purchase special speakerphones for the entire group in order to be heard clearly. With the difference in price, you will have to decide what makes the most sense for your company. Many feel any expense is worth it to have a face-to-face conversation with people around the world. In most cases, these expenses will be recouped in a very short period of time.
Image credit: CC by Chip Harlan