Guide to audio and video teleconferencing systems
Teleconferencing has been used since the invention of the phone, with companies making calls across the world to handle business dealings. The invention of speakerphones further increased the ease and comfort with which multiple parties on one end can interact with multiple parties on another end, allowing business meetings to be held in two or more separate locations.
Nowadays, sophisticated technology provides a variety of methods of teleconferencing to suit all business needs. While the high-tech equipment and services may come at a price, there are many affordable packages that will accommodate any budget and will actually allow companies to save money in the long run by cutting down on business-related travel costs.
What Is Teleconferencing?
Teleconferencing is simply a means of holding a meeting in which participants are in different geographical locations. It's extremely common in the business world, where employees and management will often have to hold meetings between offices in different cities, with off-site vendors or with clients, or give presentations or seminars. Not only does it eliminate the need for costly travel, it also allows meetings to happen more frequently without upsetting ordinary daily business practices.
There are many teleconferencing system options available. Audio teleconferencing allows for voice-only transmission, while video teleconferencing can provide a human face and visual interaction along with an audio component. Computer telecommunication can allow for both of these features as well as the transmission of data; Web conferencing can make the best use of this latter feature by allowing one party to control the screens of the other parties in an interactive conference.
Outsourcing Your Teleconferencing System Needs
While the hardware components necessary for teleconferencing can be purchased, most companies will work with a teleconferencing company to handle the software and phone line requirements for teleconferences.
Along with setting up the means for communication, teleconferencing services also offer these features (and many more):
- Recording of teleconferences or videoconferences for your records.
- Bandwidth for videoconferencing that allows for smooth transmission.
- Muting and un-muting options that are customizable.
- Q&A features to manage larger conference calls.
Generally, companies are charged a monthly rate for their teleconferencing service based on the features they choose. Usage may also factor in to make packages more flexible, depending on how frequently companies intend to use the teleconferencing options.