7 Simple Truths about Desktop & Mobile Video Conferencing

Desktop and mobile video are all the rage right now. Every video vendor claims they have a viable solution, and there is a seemingly endless string of new entrants to the market. In such a crowded space, it’s sometimes difficult to stand out – and for those outside the industry, it’s probably even harder to cut through all the noise.

The purpose of this blog is to highlight the truth about the applications available today and call out some of the most important desktop and mobile video conferencing features.

1. Freely downloadable in the app store doesn’t mean anyone can join your conference for free.
Several vendors offer free mobile video conferencing apps in the iTunes and Google Play stores. But for many of those apps, you can’t join a call without complex setup and licensing, and you often can’t join a call due to firewall issues. Scopia Desktop and Mobile are freely distributable to anyone without requiring a user-specific license key. Competing solutions often require a user-specific (or, named user) license key even for casual or one-time users.

2. If you can’t easily join the call, you may not join at all.
Many vendors’ solutions require downloads, complex licensing and registration. Scopia video conferencing does not, and its embedded firewall traversal means you can join a call without calling in your IT team to assist. Just click on the link and join the call. Although you will want to test your speaker and mic if you’re using a laptop. Scopia Mobile is designed to leverage your device’s audio and video systems.

3. The benefits of video conferencing are severely diminished if you can only invite a select few.
A number of mobile and desktop apps offered today are based on proprietary technologies. Only standards-based solutions enable you to speak to connect to other vendors’ standards-based systems (unless you add gateways and get a little creative). Proprietary solutions limit your connectivity to others, and gateways can add latency and produce a lower quality experience.

4. If you can’t take advantage of audio, video and data-sharing, it’s not really collaboration.
It’s important to select a solution that enables you to join by audio, video and share content. If any of these three components isn’t available, the quality of the experience is limited and collaboration is compromised. These features should be available on any device, whether you’re in a conference room, at your desk or on the go.

5. The latest technologies don’t matter if the solution doesn’t leverage them.
Some of our competitors’ desktop and mobile solutions don’t leverage protocols like H.264 SVC, which helps to deliver a great video experience even over “lossy” networks. Scopia Desktop leverages SVC and both Desktop and Mobile work with NetSense. Exclusive to Scopia conferencing, NetSense is a bandwidth estimation and adaptation algorithm designed with unmanaged networks in mind, specifically the public Internet. With NetSense, call quality will remain as good as possible regardless of bandwidth availability and changes in bandwidth during a call.

6. It’s not cloud-based just because it has the word “cloud” in its name.
In a recent blog, I talked about cloud-based video for SMBs. There are viable solutions in the market today, and we have partners offering hosted video. Make sure you are investing in a proven video solution that is offered either on-premises and through service providers.

7. Everyone says they offer easy-to use mobile video, but actions speak louder than words.
We’ll prove it – request a demo on-the-fly on YOUR mobile device. I bet we can get you into a mobile video call in a matter of minutes if you have a camera-enabled iOS device or Scopia-compatible Android device. Just click here: http://bit.ly/10LzX21 to get started.

Have you tried desktop and mobile video? What recommendations do you have for those in the market today? What other “gotchas” should they consider? I’d love to hear from you.