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News | 05/02/20

Business chat and video call will relieve your mailbox

News | 05/02/20

Business chat and video call will relieve your mailbox

We often get lost in the amount of emails and it takes valuable time to navigate in the topics. Slack, Messenger, Whatsapp or Skype apps will help. Instead of a mailbox, they use forms of chat or calls that can be organized in various ways. Read an overview from Aliter Technologies.

Slack

The space where the team communicates. Slack is an ideal way to keep your mailbox free and get rid of messages. It was first introduced in 2014 as “all your team communications in one place, instantly searchable and accessible wherever you are.” The application has seen unprecedented success in the enterprise environment by replacing email communication. The solution was that instead of scrambling through the mails, the user had all the communication neatly categorized by the topic in channels. A new member of the team was also able to easily navigate within the topic.

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Slack is used to communicate between team members on a chat basis. The messages can be traced and the whole communication can be divided by topic into “channels” where a discussion on a specific topic takes place. For example, when developing a new app, there may be one channel called “new features” where there is a discussion about new features that could be added to the app. The app also lets you send messages directly to team members.

Advantages:

  • Clear organization of conversations into channels.
  • Share files, links directly in a conversation.
  • Offers integration of other tools (Google Drive, GitHub and others).
  • Easy browse of conversations.
  • Basic version with restrictions is free.

Disadvantages:

  • Communication is not end-to-end encrypted.
  • The application cannot be modified according to the corporate identity.
  • Accumulated new messages are more difficult to navigate in if the user has been inactive for a long time and it is more difficult to find relevant information for him.

Platform:

  • Windows application
  • Mac OS application
  • iOS
  • Android

The application is used by: EA Games, Oracle, Autodesk

The price:

  • Free
  • Standard – € 6.25 / user / month
  • Plus – € 11.75 / user / month

Of course, Slack is not the only communication tool for teams. Some users prefer Whatsapp or Messenger. These tools are suitable for chatting, teams can create group conversations and track back messages without restriction, but neither application provides as extensive communication management capabilities as Slack. Especially for this reason, they are used by smaller teams whose communication about projects is not complex.

Another way teams communicate is by call or video call. It is an ideal way to communicate remotely when the chat form is not enough. Teams use this method especially in situations where it is necessary to have a more extensive and complicated interview with colleagues who do not work in the same place. Popular conference tools are Skype, Zoom and WebEx.

Skype

Skype was created in 2003 and allowed users to communicate via the Internet. In 2005, the company was buyed by eBay. The video-conference application, owned by Microsoft since 2011, is a popular choice for video calls. It is available for free and will serve small teams that do not need advanced functionality. Skype supports calls with a maximum of 25 subscribers and is included with Office 365 in addition to the standalone version. On the other hand, if the team needs more features, Microsoft offers Skype for Business. The app supports calls to 250 people at once, includes more advanced security features and admin access. Skype for Business is part of Microsoft Teams, which is part of Office 365.

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Advantages:

  • Free version.
  • Video call quality.
  • Extensive Skype for Business integration across Office 365 applications – for example, you can start a call directly from Outlook.
  • Skype for Business shows the detailed status of user activity – making it easy to see if a colleague is in the office or meeting.

Disadvantages:

  • Skype for Business is included with other packages and cannot be purchased separately.
  • Ups and downs in the quality of phone calls.

Platform:

  • Web
  • Windows application
  • Mac OS application
  • Linux application
  • iOS
  • Android

The price:

  • Skype – free
  • Skype for Business is included with other Microsoft packages.

 

Zoom

In recent years, a very popular cloud application combines video conferences, online meetings and group chats into one platform. It allows audio and video calling, computer screen recording, and offers a lot of features for administrators. Zoom is popular especially thanks to the affordability and quality.

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Advantages:

  • HD video and audio quality.
  • Affordable solution.
  • Integrates with other collaboration tools such as Dropbox, Outlook, Trello, Confluence.

Disadvantages:

  • Although the price is affordable, for larger teams the application can be expensive, as the price depends on the number of guest users.
  • You cannot connect to webinars from another platform. All participants must have Zoom.

Platform:

  • Windows application
  • Mac OS application
  • Linux application
  • iOS
  • Android

The application is also used by: Uber, GoDaddy, Pandora.

The price:

  • Basic – free
  • For – $ 14.99 / user / month
  • Business – $ 19.99 / user / month (minimum 10 users)
  • Enterprise – $ 19.99 / user / month (minimum 50 users)

 

WebEx

Cisco Cloud Solution offers audio, video calls and content sharing. WebEx is also available directly from the browser without the need to install the application. You can also make calls using other applications, such as Skype for Business and VoIP phones.

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Advantages:

  • Video and audio quality with minimal lag.
  • Offers users a custom meeting room.
  • Integrates into other collaborative tools.

Disadvantages:

  • The price.

Platform:

  • Web
  • Windows application
  • Mac OS application
  • iOS
  • Android

The price:

  • Free (up to 50 participants, maximum call duration is 40 minutes).
  • Starter – € 12.85 / user / month
  • Plus – € 17.30 / user / month
  • Business – € 25.65 / user / month