One of the biggest advantages of Web conferencing is the ability to record presentations (both audio and screen) and play them back later. This allows people who couldn’t make it for the live presentation to still hear and see it. It also allows conference attendees to go back and listen to the presentation again – perhaps to absorb parts they might have missed or maybe didn’t fully understand. In addition, it helps the conference leader or other attendee share the presentation with others.
What’s more, companies can build libraries of Web presentations which they can use as a resource for a wide variety of purposes.
The thing is, most Web conferencing service providers charge extra for this service.
Not The Conference Group
: Today the company – a leading provider of hosted audio, Web and videoconferencing services – announced that it has waived the fee associated with recording a Web conference on its ReadyShow service.
With ReadyShow, users can record their Web conferences, with the audio and visuals synchronized, in the Flash format and then download the file immediately following the event. In addition, The Conference Group (News - Alert) will archive the recording for up to 30 days – meaning the conference leader can go back and retrieve the recording any time up until then.
From there the conference leader or other user can upload the file to their Website, store it in an archive, share it with others, or whatever. The company previously offered this functionality – only now it is provided free of charge. Of course, the normal per minute fees (or flat rate subscription fees) still apply.
"Our clients are using the recording feature to include intended participants who are unable to attend an event, as well as a multimedia presentation to build content libraries,” explained Greg Plum (News - Alert), director of channel development at The Conference Group. “Now they can do this with no incremental expense for the recording feature.”
As Plum explained, once the conference has ended and recording has stopped, the leader is automatically directed to the recording archive, and provided with the ability to download the Flash file. “From that point forward, the client owns the content, and can disperse it at will,” he said.
ReadyShow is a full-featured, on-demand, “reservationless” Web conferencing service that lets companies and individual users conduct conferences either on a scheduled basis or “on-the-fly.” Because it is a fully Web-based, on-demand service, it is ideal for ad-hoc conferences where simplicity and flexibility are required.
Presentations can consist of anything a user might want to share from their computer. The system supports Microsoft (News - Alert) PowerPoint, Microsoft Word, Microsoft Excel and Adobe Acrobat PDF documents. ReadyShow also sports a very simple-to-use interface: Conferencing functions and tools are easily accessed through a simple toolbar and participants list. From the toolbar, a conference leader controls the presentation and determines what participants see in their conference windows.
With this highly reliable platform, companies can conduct Web tours, demonstrate Web services or leverage online content during presentations. It also allows users to share desktop applications for real-time software demonstrations and application training. With a Web camera installed, presenters can also display live video.
Best of all, the service is completely secure, as all communications are encrypted with 128 bit SSL.
The Conference Group – which sponsors the Conferencing and Web Conferencing channels on TMCnet – made news in May when it announced that it had added a new feature to its audio conferencing service that allows a conference leader or other user to create and maintain lists of conference attendees for automatic dial-out.
The new capability, dubbed “UBlast,” allows a user to quickly get a pre-defined group of people on a conference call with just the click of a mouse. Using a proprietary Web interface, a conference leader can easily create, add, delete or modify “dial-out” lists, and then enact them automatically upon entering the conference (or manually by entering a code).
The company also recently announced a new feature for its operator assisted audio conferencing service that lets operators and/or moderators view, and control, the Q&A queue in real time during a live audio conference.
This new feature, called Conference Viewer, helps a moderator or operator prioritize participants waiting in the Q&A queue, so that the more important or pertinent questions are asked first. In this regard the feature helps improve the quality of the information conveyed to the audience during a live audio conference.
Patrick Barnard is a contributing writer for TMCnet. To read more of Patrick’s articles, please visit his columnist page.
Edited by Michael Dinan