Internet Meeting Software
Internet meeting software allows a group of people to interact almost as if they were in the same conference room, no matter where they are. Depending on its features, Internet meeting software may support text-only chat; audio/video conferencing; whiteboard-style presentations of graphics to all participants; and even the ability to edit or mark up other participants' presentations. What more could you want in a meeting?
Which Internet Meeting Software is Right For You?
Internet meeting software is sold (often along with supporting hardware) for exclusive use by enterprises, government agencies, and other large entities that hold many online meetings. But if you only hold meetings a few times a month, it's more cost effective to pay only for the meeting services you need. It's even more cost effective to get Internet meeting services for free. That's where the Web comes in.
Internet meeting software hosted on a service provider's servers can be accessed by anyone with an Internet connection. You can reserve a time slot for a specific number of participants; distribute a URL and password along with emailed invitations to the online conference; and everyone logs into the conference "room" at the appointed hour.
GoToMeeting.com is one of the leaders in Web meeting services. The company offers several types of online meeting services depending on the number of participants and the communications capabilities required. Small groups (15 and under) can be highly interactive, with people sending their contributions and questions in a free-style format, marking up a presentation displayed to all, etc. But large groups must be managed to avoid chaos. Presentations by one or a handful of "speakers" to a large group of "listeners" is generally handled in the so-called Webinar format.
A Webinar is simply a seminar presented via the Web. Most participants are passive during the presentation by a panel of leaders. Some are even asleep, but I digress. After the presentation, communication channels can be opened so that the audience can ask questions. Questions are queued so they don't interrupt a speaker's answer to the current question, or they may be screened if Q&A time is limited. Speakers can also conduct real-time polls and surveys in which audience members provide feedback via multiple-choice questionnaires.
More Popular Online Meeting Solutions
WebEx.com is another popular online meeting service. Participants in a WebEx Webinar must download and install proprietary software to participate. This software provides enhanced capabilities not available in standard HTML and Web browsers.
EasyWebPresenter.com supports Microsoft PowerPoint presentations over its online conferencing service. Intercall.com and many other online meeting services supports presentation of the output from virtually any desktop application.
The cost of Web-based meeting services varies from free for a limited number of meetings and participants per month to several hundred dollars per month for unlimited simultaneous participants and meetings. Committing to a fixed monthly subscription fee for a year or more is one way to lower the cost per meeting if you hold a large number of meetings.
Most companies save significant amounts of money with online meetings. The costs of travel, lodging, ground transportation, and time away from regular work add up. Webinars and other forms of Internet meetings are not "the future" but an essential business tool right now.
Do you use Internet meeting software? Post your comment or question below...
This article was posted by Bob Rankin on 1 Nov 2010
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Article information: AskBobRankin -- Internet Meeting Software (Posted: 1 Nov 2010)
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Most recent comments on "Internet Meeting Software"
02 Nov 2010
I don't think easywebpresenter.com is Internet Meeting Software - it seems to be some sort of video welcoming person for your website.
08 Nov 2010
Security should be at the very core of the selection of any video conferencing system. You can easily begin your search by choosing from products from vendors who have invested both the time and the money to meet the strict standards set forth by NIST for FIPS 140-2, Level 1 Certification.
Many web conferencing vendors state that they are Compliant with the standards, The real question becomes whether or not compliance, versus actual certification, meets the standards of your organization. If compliance is acceptable today, are you prepared to switch out your web conferencing vendor, if your organization eventually requires a FIPS 140-2, Level 1 certification?
VIA3 is the only product I know of that is FIPS Certified. Does anyone know of another web based product that is, and is priced at $23.75 per month for unlimited usage for the Professional user, $4.95 per month for the Standard user and $0 for all Temporary users?
09 Feb 2011
RHUB (pronounced as R-Hub) is an appliance based web conferencing and remote support solution. It supports both PC and Mac. http://www.rhubcom.com
31 Jan 2012
You may also want to try free Ammyy Admin
One of the easiest and the most fast software for online meetings. No monthly fees, free for non commercial use.
It might be a good alternative though!