What is Video Conferencing

Video conferencing is a visual communication session between two or more users regardless of their location, featuring audio and video content transmission in real time.

For effective video conferencing, an organization needs to set up a video conferencing system profiling software and hardware solutions for rooms, PCs, mobile devices, and browsers.Video conferencing system consists of an endpoint (ranging from a simple PC to a telepresence system), video conferencing server (to run group video conferences), peripherals (webcam, microphone, speakerphone, headset, etc.) and software infrastructure (video processing, content transmission, integrations). Video conferencing is a modern high-tech communication tool for increasing business efficiency, optimizing and accelerating decision-making processes, and cutting travel costs.

Video Conferencing Benefits

Video Conferencing Benefits
  • Save your time. You can run video conferences with remote colleagues on the run right from your desktop or meeting room. With video meeting you don’t waste your time and money on business vacations, cut event management costs, etc.
  • Easy-to-use. You just need to schedule your video meeting, invite your colleagues and start video conference right away! Your video conferencing system will also send you a notification to remind you of your meeting. Additionally, video conferencing system interface is extremely user-friendly and does not need additional trainings.
  • Collaboration tools. For efficient workflow video conferencing systems often provide different collaboration tools, such as screen and content sharing, slideshow, instant messaging. Collaboration tools allow multiple teams to work on a joint project, share their results and brainstorm ideas.
  • Real-life impressions. As compared to phone talks, video conferencing is much closer to real life as it features visual contact. During a video meeting you can see user’s emotions and articulation and establish eye contact, which is crucial for social communication. Additionally, video conferencing systems do not allow users to distract, making it easier to focus on the communications as during a real meeting.
  • Security. Modern video conferencing systems are based on specialized codecs, proprietary protocols and actively using encryption, which is why security risks can only be caused by a human factor.

Video Conferencing Modes

There are two main video conferencing modes: point-to-point video calls and multipoint video conferences. Point-to-point video call involves a video session between two users, while multipoint or group video conferencing features video meetings with more than two users. Multipoint conferencing mode includes several subtypes depending on your needs, the number of participants and active speakers participating in the meeting.

Point-to-Point Video Call

Point-to-Point Video Call

Point-to-point video call is a video session involving two participants who can see and hear each other simultaneously. Both video call and video conference users are provided with various collaboration tools such as text messaging, file transfer, slide show, etc.

Symmetric Video Conference

Symmetric Video Conference

Symmetric video conference is a full-duplex video session involving more than two participants who can see and hear each other simultaneously. Symmetric video conference is similar to a roundtable discussion where all participants have equal rights. This video conferencing mode is perfect if you need active involvement of all the speakers.

How to create group video conference

Voice-Activated Switching

Voice-Activated Switching

With voice-activated switching, all participants can see and hear only the active speaker while he/she can see himself/herself or the previous speaker. The technology can be executed in various ways, but the idea behind VAS remains the same: video conferencing server monitors voice activity of the conference participants and immediately switches focus to the speaker. This mode has considerable disadvantages, e.g. false activation due to noise, coughing or mobile calls.

Role-Based Video Conference

Role-based Meeting

Role-based video conference features two types of participants: active speakers and passive listeners. Every listener can become a speaker with the permission of the conference owner. The owner can give the floor to any listener or remove speaker’s rights immediately.

How to manage role-based conference

Video Conferencing for Distance Learning

Video Lecture Operation Scheme

Video conference for distance learning or a video lecture is a video session where the speaker (the instructor) can see and hear all the students, while the students can see and hear only the instructor. This way, the students easily focus on the learning process and don’t get distracted by other students, while the instructor is able to monitor them.

Streaming

Streaming

Streaming is a conference mode which allows speaker to broadcast video to a wide audience without seeing or hearing the listeners. Other participants can see and hear only the speaker, while feedback is available via text chat.