Video conferencing is a product of interactive telecommunication technologies. It is a breakthrough in the world of communications as it allows users to keep in touch while being in different locations with the help of audio transmissions and a two-way video. It is an excellent example of groupware and can also be dubbed as visual collaboration. Video conferencing is best suited for a conference rather then individual use.
In order to set up video conferencing, there are three basic requirements that you will have to fulfill: a high speed Internet connection, a webcam and microphone, video conference software.
- Now that you have all the things that you need to carry out video conferencing, the first thing that you will have to do is to make sure that all the participants have the required video conference hardware installed on their computers. The next crucial things are a webcam, speakers and a microphone which you will have to obtain separately if they are not already a part of your computer.
- The next step is to obtain the necessary video conference software by downloading it right off the Internet. If all the participants are using the same kind of video conference software, then you can communicate free of charge. Some of the free video conference softwares that are available are MSN Messenger, Yahoo and Skype among others. On the other hand, there are other companies as well which provide video conference softwares but they charge a monthly fee so its not going to be free. However, you might have to dish out some cash on paid video conference software if you are looking for high quality audio and video along with a fairly large number of participants. No matter what form of software you use, each type comes with instructions on how to set up your computer and webcam to the software.
- Before having the actual video conference, it is advised to test the software by having a mock video conference that includes all the participants. Moreover, make sure that the webcams with each participant are working properly. Also, the room lighting should neither be too dim or too bright as such a situation would make it hard for the participants to see each other clearly. Furthermore, test the sending and receiving of documents and files to make sure they are being sent and received smoothly without any hitches.
- Now that all the hardware and the software has been set up, you need to select a specific time that suits everyone so that you can test out the video conferencing software and all the participants can do the same. Now you are ready to video conference!