Recent studies show that 1in every 4 Americans works from home. Since the dawn of the coronavirus pandemic, more and more people are now working from home. As a result, there has been a surge in the need for video conferencing and communication tools.
Zoom has stood out as the popular option in this category. One fact that makes many people use Zoom is its cost-effectiveness. They allow users to make free video conference calls with unlimited members lasting up to 24 hours. With such features at zero cost, many people have been using Zoom more than other options.
Unfortunately, Zoom does not offer satisfactory results for all users. At the corporate level, Zoom may fail to meet expectations due to the limited features they offer. Keep on reading to find out the available zoom alternatives.
What is Zoom?
Zoom is a video calling app that allows users to host video conferences at no fee. They offer full features on their basic plan, which allows unlimited calls. This plan allows one on one meetings but also allows video conferences. The basic plan allows unlimited calls plus many other features.
Why Use Zoom Alternatives
While Zoom works well for basic video conferencing, there are many concerns at a professional level. From the quality of the video to the lack of proper working tools, there are serious concerns that call for a switch to alternatives. Even though the app is free, users have needs that go beyond the cost.
Below are some of the shortcomings of Zoom:
- Zoombombing: This is a situation where trolls sneak into public calls. In some cases, the trolls also sneak into private calls, posting inappropriate content. This is a problem that poses serious security concerns for users.
- Lack of task management features: The other concern that Zoom users have raised is the lack of proper task management features. Lack of features such as co-editing of documents in real-time and lack of whiteboard collaboration is a limitation for business meetings.
- Lack of proper third-party software integration and CRM systems
- Lack of a browser-based solution
Further, Zoom offers an insufficient free plan but does not have a satisfactory paid option. If they would provide more features for a paid plan, most of these issues may be addressed.
The Best Zoom Alternatives
Zoom is just one of the many available video conferencing apps. If the app does not offer value for an organization or individuals, the following options can be explored. While some are paid, they offer more satisfactory features.
The following apps are the best Zoom alternatives:
RingCentral Office is a browser-based video conferencing system that can host up to 200 people in one call. The app is a good alternative to Zoom in the sense that they provide features such as chat messaging, basic business phone system features, and desktop screen sharing.
They also allow whiteboard collaboration and real-time editing of documents, one of the shortcomings of Zoom.
Other features of Zoom Central as follows:
- Up to 24 hours duration for calls
- Free calls across the US and Canada
- Free unlimited SMS
- Background noise reduction
- Up to one-year cloud storage of meeting recordings
Their plans start from $19.99 per user per month but they have no free version. The most expensive plan is $49.99 per user per month.
Microsoft Teams is a video conferencing app that has been around for a long time. Besides providing live video meetings, the app allows users to share files in real-time, transition from messages to video chats immediately, make group audio calls among other features.
Microsoft Teams offers a single free plan, and three paid plans. The lowest plan starts at $5 per user per month while the highest plan is $20 per user per month.
Cisco WebEx is another video conferencing app that is popular due to the top features offered. This app allows people to host video conferences of up to 1000 users for a maximum of 50 minutes on their free plan.
The app also has an AI Meeting Assistant feature that uses certain trigger words to take automatic actions such as creating notes.
The other features they offer include:
- Screen sharing on mobile and desktop
- Mobile apps for Android and iPhone users
- Unlimited chat messages
- End to end encryption for security
They have one free plan and three paid plans. Their lowest plan goes for $13.50 per user per month while the highest goes for $26,95
What to Look for in Zoom Alternatives
With so many alternatives available, choose one based on your needs. The key factors to consider include the cost of the plans, the available features, and most important interaction with other apps. Any video conferencing app used must be able to allow easy working, offer whiteboard collaboration, and allow integration with similar tools.