The Benefits of Video Conferencing VS. Audio Only

Man outside sitting with a suspension bridge in the background, focused on his laptop while pushing down his ear bud with left handWho knew that one day video conferencing would be the modus operandi of most people in the workforce? What was once a pipe dream – seeing someone on the other end of the line with whom you are speaking to – is now available in the palm of our hands or used with friends on game night, interviews with c-level execs and hiring employees for remote jobs around the world.

Here’s the thing though; As much as video conferencing has been revolutionary in connecting people, there’s also the option to host an audio conference. It has just as important a role in keeping business and people aligned and on the same page minus the pressure of having to turn on your camera.

So which option is better for you? Which one might you require in a given circumstance? Here’s what you need to know first:

What is Audio Conferencing?

It’s when multiple people connect from different devices via the same phone call. Audio conferencing is akin to what was a conference-call function on a desk phone – which is still used and available – but these days, it’s more commonly done via the Internet, where one number or host dials to connect from their device to reach others. No cameras turned on.

What is Video Conferencing?

Young woman in mid-sentence using her hands to gesticulate while seated at a table in a retail store in front of laptop in a video conference

Same idea but with the camera on. Video conferencing is designed to bring together multiple people from different devices in an upfront, face-to-face virtual environment that simulates being in front of one another. Participants need to use the Internet and can only access the video chat using a dial-in number or a link provided by the host.

What’s The Difference Between The Two?

Other than both being real-time communication channels – their most obvious similarity – the differences between the two mediums are aplenty. First, they are both two completely different formats. Second, they require different technology and third, there are different costs involved.

Video conferencing requires audio, but audio conferencing is standalone and doesn’t require video which makes video conferencing more demanding in terms of technology. Video requires faster high speed internet, more bandwidth, audiovisual equipment and potentially a few other bells and whistles.

On the other hand, audio conferencing needs only the bare necessities to make a connection. It can be as low-tech as plugging in a phone and making a call, or simply turning off the camera when you use a device. That being said, audio conferencing requirements might change depending on the need of the specific business circle, but by and large, audio conferencing generally requires very little set up.

Both, however, come together seamlessly for working remotely. They are the two pieces that comprise a well-working, and well-oiled machine. Businesses that adapt to using audio and video conferencing have the upper hand when it comes to working with employees from around the globe.

Here are a few benefits of both video and audio conferencing solutions depending on what you need them for:

Video Conferencing Pros

It’s The Second-best To Meeting In Person:
The number one reason video conferencing has wildly picked up in popularity over the past few years is because it’s the closest you can get to another person ir group. It’s become expected from most companies now to meet over video.

It’s Very Visual:
Most of our communication is non-verbal, therefore video offers a more in-depth look into what a person is communicating, via their micro-expressions, head leaning, gesticulations and more, all of which contribute to a larger and deeper meaning behind the words.

It’s Feature-Heavy:
Video conferencing isn’t just only video. These days, all sorts of extras come loaded with the technology to make the experience as collaborative and productive as possible. Features like annotation, sentiment analysis, screen sharing and more are modern additions that make for a pleasant online experience.

Audio Conferencing Pros

It’s Familiar:
It’s what’s been done over and over again for decades. There isn’t much set up, and it’s easy to connect through a phone or cloud-based conferencing solution to anyone from anywhere at any time.

It’s Uncomplicated:
Typically, audio conferencing comes with a few selections and that’s it. There aren’t a lot of fancy options to choose from. It’s straightforward, to the point and a great choice if you don’t want to show your face, or share your screen.

It’s Very Cost-Effective:
Since audio conferencing doesn’t require the trimmings like higher internet bandwidth and extra equipment like mics and webcams, this solution becomes quite affordable – even FREE!

View of smiling business-casual dressed woman outside, holding a phone to her ear and a tablet in the other, while walking and workingIt’s More Anonymous:
When the camera is off, you can remain a little more invisible. This is advantageous for people who’d like to lead with a voice call instead of video. Furthermore, an audio call is more casual and off the cuff.

The Takeaway:

Both methods are worth their weight in gold. It would be impossible to function in this day and age without them – both of them. In fact, they support each other and both exist under the term teleconferencing or web conferencing. They are not mutually exclusive options, you can (and should!) have both to tun your business effectively.

With FreeConference.com, you have the option to communicate as you please! Whether by video or audio, the choice is yours with how you want to connect. Especially for modern businesses whose success relies on their remote workers, clients and future prospects, it’s the smart thing to do to be able to stay connected in as many ways as possible.

FreeConference.com comes with a wide range of features – FREE! – like Screen Sharing, Document Sharing, Online Whiteboard and more. Upgrade to a paid plan for more options like Annotation, Custom Hold Music and YouTube Live Streaming.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.

diagram