In this day and age of modern technology, the world seems to have become smaller and smaller. Distance no longer bars people to communicate with each other or create business opportunities. One technology that makes it all possible is video conference. Video conference, because of its ability to bring people closer in spite of the distance, has become popular with the education sector and the corporate world.
Anyone who wishes to perform video conference must have the proper facilities. These include video camera or webcam to serve as video input; a computer monitor or television for video output; microphones; speakers; and a telephone network or internet to perform data transfer.
Video conference also requires the right software. Luckily, free video conference software is available right within the computer’s operating system and through the internet.
GnomeMeeting is a free Internet-based video conference software that is accessible through http://www.gnomemeeting.org. It mainly uses H.323, the same protocol created by Microsoft to run audio and video features of Windows.
Paltalk is a video conference software that can be downloaded for free from the Internet. It promises crystal clear voice and video, up to 6 videos in one operation, sharing of photos, files and messages, and simultaneous video viewing in multiple rooms.
EarthLink Conference Manager is a free video conference software that also doubles as a video chat system. This enables multiple parties at different locations to participate in a video conference from a desktop computer. This free video conference software is still in its test version, which is widely used for research applications.
Global Live Talk, another free video conference software, facilitates online conferencing on intranets and the World Wide Web. It can perform real-time rich media conferencing, instant messaging, chat, online meetings, collaborative workspaces, PowerPoint Presentations, and software for groups in the Internet. It also serves as a virtual venue for meeting colleagues, friends and family members and trainings.
The Virtual Room Videoconferencing System (VRVS) is an Internet-based free video conference software. It is a project that is originally developed by European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN) and now maintained by California Institute of Technology (Caltech).
Free video conference software also comes with many popular instant messaging applications. The latest version of Yahoo! Messenger (YM) provides its own free video and voice conference software. The AOL Instant Messenger (AIM) is an ad-supported instant messaging and presence computer program that allows users to communicate instantly through text to their “buddies” around the world. MSN Messenger is another instant messaging program that, like YM and AIM, performs video conference software, which can be downloaded for free for those whose computers run on Windows operating systems.
Aside from the Internet, the computer platform is also a source of free video conference software. One such application is iChat, an AIM client that enables Apple computer users to use AIM in their desktop units to carry out video conference for free. Netmeeting is another video conference software that comes for free with several versions of Microsoft Windows but before Windows XP. Windows Messenger is a free conference software that is integrated in Microsoft Exchange, Microsoft Outlook, Microsoft Outlook Express, and the Remote Assistance feature of for Windows XP.
With video conference, communicating with friends and business colleagues though geographically apart is no longer costly. All that is needed to be done is to have the right hardware and the right video conference software that comes with the computer’s operating system or available for free through the Internet.