The latest advances in video conference software have pushed many leading companies to save time, money, and greenhouse emissions by transitioning to video communications for company meetings.

The Corona has boosted this shift to video conferencing tools and now salespeople are meeting prospective clients, doctors are diagnosing patients and teachers are teaching students all through video meeting software.

If you’re looking to join the growing movement of hosting online meetings, workshops, or seminars, then the first thing you need to do is invest in reliable video conferencing software.

But while there are plenty of video conferencing tools on the market, not all of them are up to par when it comes to available features, pricing, and your online security. Read on to get this information and our review of the main tools available.

What is video conferencing software?

Video conferencing software is a tool used to conduct video meetings and share screens online between 2 or more individuals. Companies and professionals use video communication software as a cost-effective means to communicate in a visual and auditory environment from a distance. Video meetings can be conducted from anywhere in the world that has a solid internet connection. Some video conferencing software also allow you to share files, share screens, or remotely control someone else’s computer.

review of the best video conference softwares

What do I need to use video conferencing software?

There are a few key things you will need to get started before you’re able to have a successful digital meeting:

  • A laptop or desktop computer
  • A strong internet connection
  • A webcam
  • Headphones
  • Microphone

Many of these things have already come integrated into laptops, however, if you’re using a desktop computer, you might need to add a few things to get properly set up.

How to decide on the best video conferencing software?

  1. Does it have all the features I need?

The features you’ll need in video conferencing software will really depend on your business’s needs. You might only require basic video conferencing if all you want to do is hold virtual meetings. However, if you want more robust features for a more interactive meeting, you’ll want some other features such as file-sharing or screen sharing.

2. How many people can be hosted at one time?

A few other things to keep in mind when shopping for the best video conferencing software is the number of people you’ll want on one call. Some software may have a limit, so make sure the one you choose is right for the number of people you’ll have in your meetings.

3. What is the degree of security this tool provides?

Security is another important feature, especially if you’ll be sharing important files in your video conference. Make sure the software you choose has guaranteed security measures in place to ensure the safety of your digital data.

4. How easy is this tool to set up and use?

Lastly, the video conferencing software should be simple to set up and use. You definitely don’t want to be that person who calls a meeting only to be unable to figure out how to turn your volume or camera on when the meeting begins. 

How to use video conferencing software for small business

What you do with your video conference tool will obviously depend on what kind of business you have, but don’t disregard it as one-use software.

Things you can do with video conferencing software:

  • Hold business meetings
  • Conduct employee training
  • Hold a webinar
  • Host an online class or workshop
  • Conduct video interviews
  • Host a digital “event”

This list is not exhaustive, the sky’s the limit when it comes to video conferencing software. It’s also used for personal purposes, like getting the family together in one place, regardless of where everyone is located physically.

Our review of the best video conferencing software for business

The video conferencing software on this list are all great options for your business, so read on to decide which one is best for you.

DISCLAIMER: The plans and prices reflected in this article were accurate at the time of writing, however, please note that they can vary based on location and special promotions. All prices mentioned are in USD.

1. Zoom

Maximum participants?1,000 with Enterprise Plan
Free trial?Free Basic Plan for up to 100 participants
Mobile friendly?Yes, iOS and Android app
Starting price?Pro Plan starts at $14.99/month
best virtual conference platforms - Zoom

Zoom is one of the more popular video-conferencing software out there, and with good reason.

With this program, you can conference with up to 1,000 people and view up to 49 screens at once. You can also host up to 10,000 viewers simultaneously. 

Zoom integrates with popular calendars like Outlook, Gmail, or iCal so you can instantly create meetings, send out an invitation, and join all from your inbox. 

Zoom works great with any amount of people connected to the platform at the same time. It performs well when running meetings, group classes, workshops, webinars, and more.

Zoom claims to have end-to-end encryption for your security, however, it has recently received some criticism over user privacy concerns.

There is a free plan that can be used for up to 100 participants for meetings of up to 40 minutes, and unlimited one-on-one meetings. The paid plans give you options for more participants, longer meetings, cloud recording, more admin powers, custom branding, and more.

Prerequisites for use

You and each one of your staff members must have your own Zoom account. You can add your staff members as users under your premium Zoom account, as long as they have their own login credentials. Consider upgrading to the Zoom business plan, if you would like to enable single sign-on for your entire company. You are restricted from sharing a single Zoom login between staff members. 

If you and your staff already have Zoom accounts, you may skip directly to Connecting your Zoom account below.

If you’re using Zoom for the first time, Sign In to Zoom and create an account. It only takes a few minutes.

Follow any on-screen prompts and Zoom will install in a matter of minutes. With help installing Zoom to your computer or device refer to Zoom’s installation guide

2. Google Hangouts

Maximum participants?250 participants with Enterprise Plan
Free trial?14-day free G Suite trial
Mobile friendly?Yes, iOS and Android app
Starting price?Basic Plan starts at $6.00/month
best video conference software - hangouts

If you already use Google products like Gmail or Google Calendar, then adding Google Hangouts will be a breeze.

Effortlessly create a new meeting by setting up a calendar event and sharing the link with relevant participants. You don’t need to worry if the participants have the right software installed as long as they have the link to your Hangout.

You’ll enjoy the same reliable security you get from other Google products, as all audio and video are completely secure in Google Hangouts.

Since this is a Google product, there aren’t as many features like integrated file sharing, however, you can easily supplement this by sharing files via Gmail or Google Hangouts Chat.

Google Hangouts is part of the full G Suite, which gives you access to other great business apps. There is a free 14-day trial, but afterward, you’ll have to select a paid plan to continue.

3. Lifesize

Maximum participants?1,000 participants with Enterprise Plan
Free trial?6-month free plan
Mobile friendly?Yes, iOS and Android app
Starting price?Standard Plan starts at $16.95/month
best free video conferencing app - Lifesize

This video conferencing software is popular amongst businesses for its 4K audio and video, making it great for meetings of all sizes.

Lifesize integrates well with the business tools you already use, like Outlook, Cisco, Slack, Microsoft, and more. 

Some of the great features you’ll find on Lifesize is the ability to share screens during meetings, record video conferences, set up virtual meeting rooms that can be monitored by an administrator, and more.

Lifesize encrypts the signal and any media you share on its platform, making it a secure experience for your business.

There are a few different plans depending on the size and needs of your business, but you can start with a 6-month free trial and host calls of up to 25 people. Other plans come with more advanced features, like a greater number of participants, premium customer support, cloud recording and storage, and unlimited US audio calling.

4. Skype

Maximum participants?Up to 250 participants with a Business Plan
Free trial?Free plan for up to 50 participants
Mobile friendly?Yes, iOS and Android app
Starting price?Online Plan 2 starts at $5.50/month per user
best free video conferencing - Skype

Skype has become a household name for video calling for both businesses and personal use.

Though you can download and use a Skype program on your computer, you no longer need this to conduct meetings. You can simply send participants a link and they can join in on a video conference. 

Skype is particularly helpful if your business involves international travel, as you can easily use it to make phone calls to landlines and mobile phones. You can also get a local phone number in a different region so that you can answer local calls and send SMS messages.

Other features you might find helpful are screen sharing, live subtitles, and call recording. Skype uses end-to-end encryption to make sure your calls stay private.

The pricing for Skype differs from its competition since it’s part of the Microsoft Office apps. There’s a free plan that allows you to video chat with up to 50 people for free. If you want other features like a phone number or an international calling plan, you’ll need an Office 365 Business subscription.

5. RingCentral Meetings app

Maximum participants?Up to 100 participants
Free trial?Free plan available for up to 100 participants
Mobile friendly?Yes, iOS and Android app
Starting price?Essentials Plan starts at $14.99/month per user
zoom free alternatives - ring central meeting app

RingCentral is a powerful and well-recognized tool for VoIP, so you can rest assured that you’re getting quality and value with their video conferencing software.

RingCentral Meetings is ideal if you need a powerful video conferencing tool that offers you professional features. With this software, you’ll get HD video, screen sharing, team messaging, and free conferencing capabilities for up to 100 participants. 

There are also extra add-ons such as RingCentral Webinar, which allows you to host up to 10,000 participants and 500 hosts, or RingCentral Rooms, which gives you greater IT options for easier setup and implementations.

You can use RingCentral Meetings for free for 40-minute calls of maximum 100 participants, or upgrade for more features like 24/7 customer support, desktop and application sharing, and advanced collaboration tools.

6. Webex

Maximum participants?Up to 200 participants with a Business Plan
Free trial?Free plan for up to 100 participants
Mobile friendly?Yes, iOS and Android app
Starting price?Starter Plan starts at $13.50/month
best free online meeting platforms - webex

This easy-to-use software will have you video conferencing in no time.

Cisco Webex integrates with the business tools you already use, like Gmail and Google Drive, Outlook, Salesforce, Github, and Office365. 

Create a meeting in your email inbox, share it with your participants, and they can attend through their computer or phone. Cisco Webex also allows you to seamlessly switch between devices while you’re in a meeting. If a meeting runs long, switch from your laptop to your phone to continue on-the-go.

This software is great for employee training as the screen will adapt based on files you share, for example, it will open a video link you share with your audience or slides from PowerPoint.

Cisco Webex has an events calendar that allows you to create a digital event for up to 3,000 participants. During your event, you can use features like screen sharing, polls, Q&A, and a chatbox.

If you only need minimal features, you can use the Free Plan for video calls of up to 100 people. Paid plans come with cloud storage space, more integrations, more call participants, 24/7 customer support, and more.

7. GoTo Meeting

Maximum participants?Up to 3,000 participants with Enterprise Plan
Free trial?Free plan for up to 3 participants
Mobile friendly?Yes, iOS and Android app
Starting price?Professional Plan starts at $12.00/month
online conference software - goto meeting

GoTo Meeting is a great option for simple to use video conferencing software. GoToMeeting makes it easy to start or join a meeting in one click.

There are some great features here if you need a video conferencing tool with international capabilities as you’ll be able to use multi-national toll-free numbers. 

Some other features include personal meeting rooms, unlimited recording, screen sharing, drawing tools, a virtual whiteboard, and meeting transcriptions. Customers have also praised their great customer support, so you know you’ll be in good hands.

As for security, you can use a PIN system for your meetings, meaning participants need to have a secure PIN in order to log in to your video call. 

There is a free version of GoToMeeting that lets you video conference with up to 3 participants for 40-minute maximum calls. Paid plans come with a great participant allowance, cloud recording, more integrations, an admin center, and more.

8. Flock

Maximum participants?Unknown
Free trial?Free plan but only for 1:1 video calls
Mobile friendly?Yes, iOS and Android app
Starting price?Pro Plan starts at $4.50/month per user
free video conferencing apps - flock

Flock works more like a communication and collaboration hub for your team, so if you don’t have any other programs in place for this yet, then this is a great option to consider.

This tool allows you to connect with colleagues in a one-on-one chat, share all kinds of documents, and conduct video chats. Flock is a great tool to increase your team’s productivity and bring them together.

Like other video conferencing tools, Flock lets you share screens on video chats, send files, and start a video call from a chat or group channel. The service is secure, too, so you don’t need to worry about the privacy of your data.

You can use Flock for free, but you’ll only get one-on-one video calls. There are plenty of other great features you get with a paid plan, but unfortunately, Flock doesn’t specify how many participants you can have in a group chat with their plans.

9. Zoho Cliq

Maximum participants?100
Free trial?Free plan available for up to 100 participants
Mobile friendly?Yes, iOS and Android app
Starting price?Unlimited Plan starts at $0.90/month per user
video conference softwares - Zoho Cliq

Zoho Cliq is one of the many business tools offered by Zoho. Like Flock, it also works as a team collaboration tool where users can easily communicate with each other.

You can direct message another user, share files, and start an audio or video call from a chat or a channel. Once on a video call, you can also share screens, scribble down ideas on a whiteboard, have a group chat in the same window. Zoho Cliq keeps your files and calls secure with data encryption and secret chat features.

The PrimeTime feature allows you to broadcast company news or announcements in real-time to all users, while only giving a talking platform to 2 participants to ensure the call isn’t overcrowded.

Zoho Cliq boasts an impressive Free Plan that gives you video conferencing for up to 100 participants, 100GB of storage, searchable messages, screen sharing features, and more. If you need more features like custom call domains, more channels, or company branding, you can select the Unlimited Plan.

10. Free Conference

Maximum participants?100 on a video conference with the Pro Plan
Free trial?Free plan available for up to 5 participants for video chat
Mobile friendly?Yes, iOS and Android app
Starting price?Standard Plan starts at $9.99/month
free conference - zoom alternative

Free Conference is exactly what it sounds like: a phone and video conferencing software with tons of free features.

You’ll be able to start video calls that include screen sharing and dial-in integration. International participants can also dial-in, though you’ll need a paid plan for that. 

Other features include video conference recording, a chat feature with conference participants, and a unique video conferencing URL for your meeting, all for free.

With the free plan, you’ll be able to have a phone conference call with up to 100 participants, and a video call with up to 5. If you need to be able to have a video call with more people, you can upgrade to a paid plan.

Conclusion

Any of the video conferencing products on this list will be a great addition to your day-to-day business tools. While there are plenty of free plans you can use with the video conferencing tools I covered, it’s also worth considering a paid plan for more advanced features that may be helpful to your business. 

Recommendations based on specific business needs:

  • If you’re looking for a simple, free, and powerful video conferencing program, go with RingCentral. 
  • If you want to host online classes, workshops, or events with many participants, go with Zoom or Lifesize.
  • If you’re looking for a video conferencing platform that’s also a communications tool, try out Flock.
  • If your small business is already using multiple Google apps, then consider using Google Hangouts.