Showing posts with label free video conferencing. Show all posts
Showing posts with label free video conferencing. Show all posts

Sunday, March 8, 2020

How to Host an Online Meeting With Zoom

In my recent post titled Tips and Tools for Teaching Remotely I mentioned using Zoom to host online classes if Google Hangouts Meet or Microsoft Teams aren't available to you. I've used Zoom's free plan for about five years and it has been more than adequate for one-on-one and small group meetings. Zoom's free plan lets you have up to 100 people in a meeting for up to 40 minutes.

One of my favorite features of Zoom is that you set your account to default to recording all meetings as soon as they start. That way you don't forget to record the meeting. The meeting recording will save on computer. The recording can be uploaded to YouTube, Vimeo, or any file sharing service that you like to use to distribute files to your students.

In the following video I demonstrate how to schedule and host online meetings with Zoom.

Tuesday, October 23, 2018

Unhangout - Video Conferencing With Break-out Groups

We've had "unconferences" in the form of EdCamps for years. Now we have Unhangout for "unwebinars." Unhangout is a free video conferencing service developed by a small team at the MIT Media Lab. Unhangout provides free video conferencing spaces that include chat and the ability to create break-out groups from the main video conference. The purpose of the break-out feature is to let the group start with a big conversation and then let small groups split off for conversations that develop during the conference. In that sense it's a bit like the EdCamp "unconference" model. Watch the following video to learn more Unhangout.

Applications for Education
My initial thought about Unhangout is that it could be a good tool for online, informal professional development in the EdCamp model. For folks like me who don't care for how impersonal some Twitter chats have become, Unhangout could offer a more personal connection to the folks with whom you're discussing the issues of the day.

I learned about Unhangout from a post that David Kapuler wrote last week. Thanks David!

GoTalk - Simple Video Conferencing for Small Groups

GoTalk is a new video conferencing system designed for small groups. The GoTalk system is easy to use. Part of the reason why GoTalk is easy to use is that it doesn't require you to register to get started. To get started simply go to the GoTalk site, select a URL for your conference room, and click "create" to launch your video conference. People join your video conference by going to the URL that is assigned to your conference room.

GoTalk works best in the Chrome web browser. If you use it in Chrome, you can share your screen during your video conference. GoTalk has options for sending written messages and links during your video conference.

The free version of GoTalk limits you to four participants at a time. The free version also does not include a screen recording option.

Applications for Education
In a world in which Skype,,, and many other video conferencing services already exist, I'm not sure that GoTalk is going to better than those established services. That said, if you've tried those other services for hosting short online tutoring sessions and you want to try something else, GoTalk is worth trying.

Friday, January 8, 2016 Now Offers Free Video Conference Calls

Last summer I wrote about how pleased I was with the performance of We continue to use it at MindRocket Media Group for all of our conference call needs. This morning I learned that now offers free video conference calls.

The video conference call feature of allows you to have up to 25 people in your call. You can use your computer's audio or your phone to connect to the call. An attendee list shows you who is in the call and allows you to instantly chat by text with anyone in the call.

As you might have noticed in the video above, you do have to install the desktop client in order to use the video conference calling feature. The desktop client is available for Mac and Windows users.

Applications for Education
Whether it is to collaborate with colleagues or to talk with parents about their children, from time to time you could find yourself in need of a free conference call service. The new video calling feature in could be a good tool to use for those calls.

And if you just need voice for your conference calls, is easy for everyone to use. Dialing a phone number and entering an access code when prompted is all it takes to get people to join a voice-only conference call on

Friday, September 11, 2015

Zoom - Record Video Conferences in HD is a great service for hosting and recording video conferences in high definition. I was introduced to it by Rod Berger when he proposed using to record segments for the #askRichardByrne video series that we're producing. I'm glad he recommended it because it is a fantastic tool. allows you to record your video in a side-by-side format to equally feature both people in the recording or switch between featuring one person more than another in the video (click here for an example). When you record through Zoom you're given an HD video file to save locally as well as a separate HD voice recording. Zoom isn't limited to just webcam views as you can also share your screen through the service. Zoom's free plan allows you to record for up to forty minutes in each video. The number of videos that you can create is not limited.

Zoom does require that you install a desktop client in order to call, receive calls, and to record.

Applications for Education could be a great platform to use to record the virtual appearance of an author or expert in your classroom.

As you can screenshare through Zoom it could be also be a good platform for hosting remote tutoring sessions and or creating short instructional videos.