Audio, video and visual conferencing and its implications for SMEs

Monday 22 September 2008, 17:45 for 18:30

Giorgio Bragoli


The evening started with a brief overview of the aims, the presenter’s colleague then joined us by voice conference from their head office. He was then invited to join the browser based online meeting, this can be done earlier by sending the link by email to attendees who don’t have access to voice facilities if necessary. There is also a ‘chat’ facility available for attendees without voice access, anyone who has used IRC would be familiar with this type of scrolling messages, identified by log-in name.

Live demonstration

Presentations, files and documents under discussion can be shown in a separate area of the browser and amendments made in real time as if all the attendees were in the same room.

Different levels of access to the host’s machine can also be granted if required, a single application could be accessed by a remote user, multiple applications or the whole of the desktop or network can be granted, to enable any remote attendee with internet access to use business applications or network as if they were present, viewable to all other attendees.

Quality and security

There is built in security to prevent unauthorised users accessing the meeting or applications by accident or design. Attendees with access to web-cams are able to appear on screen, all without the need for expensive dedicated videoconference equipment or lines.

he online part of the presentation went very smoothly, admittedly there was only one attendee, but given the fact that we were in a hotel, on a wireless link, with no way of knowing how many hotel guests were also using the bandwidth, we could hear on the land line, typing by the remote user and see the text appear almost immediately on screen. It’s very difficult to do justice to the full scope and responsiveness of the presentation by text alone.


Following the interactive part of the presentation, there was a very lively discussion around issues raised by the use of online collaboration tools, particularly security aspects, but interestingly enough, not much about the performance of the demonstration itself.