Thinking about following the lucrative trend of business video conferencing? Are you considering utilizing something like Skype for providing such capabilities to your business? Before jumping into it, here are the reasons why you shouldn’t use Skype for your business video conferencing solution.
Video conferencing has evolved from being just a social commodity. In fact, it has expanded its realm to several fields, including healthcare, education and customer services. Proof of this is the growing importance and acceptance of online learning and the positioning of Telehealth as a strong solution to the multiple problems in traditional health care, such as reducing readmission rates.
Remote consulting is now a common thing, and it’s mainly because it allows to deliver multiple type of services face-to-face no matter the place and fits for various use cases. So, it’s not unusual to see it being used for several activities, some of which include: live broadcasting, guide counseling, tutoring, mental health treatments and even for language learning.
WebRTC, the open source platform that allows to integrate video, audio and data into different services, is the technology that is leading the revolution of video conferencing. The reason of this, among other things, is its native integration with browsers and mobile apps, eliminating the need for additional software.
You know that fellow entrepreneurs, startups and enterprise companies have used video conferencing as the pencil to write their history of success. You’re probably looking for ways to integrate such features into your product.
And while you’re doing that, you’ve probably thought of leveraging one of the existent popular applications out there. Let’s say for example Skype— it’s free, well-known and chances are, your users are already using it. So what could go wrong?
The truth is that tools like Skype or Google Meet do a great job as social apps, but fail to provide the features and capabilities that a business solution would require, so here’s why you should not consider Skype for your business video conferencing solution:
Social Apps don’t Integrate with your Products
The main purpose of a social application like Skype, is to enable remote communication between two or more peers. And that is essentially what you achieve with WebRTC.
However when it comes to integrate these video conferencing capabilities into your products, there is a lot more than just connecting users. You need to develop mechanisms to control how they are interacting.
In addition to video conferencing, your product also needs a mechanism for handling billing of services provided through video conference, scheduling capabilities to avoid schedules conflicts and a way to track the duration of the calls in order to make sure that what is billed is what is provided.
Such mechanisms needs to work in a coordinated fashion with the video conferencing tool and if you’re relying on an external one, you will have a hard time trying to make them work together, if such thing is even possible.
Use the Right Tool for the Job
Social apps are designed as general purpose video conferencing tools, and they usually play such a role acceptably.
However, depending on the nature of the services you provide, it’s likely that you’ll need more specific features to be available during a call, e.g. a whiteboard for teaching a lesson, a translator for a language learning application or integration with medical devices in a Telehealth solution.
In such cases, a general purpose video conferencing tool like Skype simply falls short at providing what is required. The best approach for such scenarios is to develop something tailored to what your product needs.
It may not comply with organization’s security policies
In order to keep your clients comfortable with the idea of sharing their personal information through your application, you must guarantee that it is well secured.
This also applies for the information that is transmitted during a video conference, and in some cases, there are special regulations that dictate how the data needs to be secured.
Social apps already have a defined way to handle data transmission and it may not be aligned to the security requirements your product needs to comply with.
Risk of users eliminating intermediary and relying on the external tool
One popular approach in many products that implement video conferencing, is to rely on a pool of remote contractors that provide their expertise to your clients. That way, the services your product provides would not be limited by time frames and/or geographical location, but rather your users would be able to connect with experts all around the world.
When you rely on a third party tool to provide video conferencing capabilities to your product, chances are that users may not see any added benefit on having your company as intermediary and may decide to make business directly with the contractor, after all, services are already provided outside of your product.
WebRTC provides the video conferencing capabilities your product needs, and also gives you total control on how it integrates with the other components of your product, including how the information is secured.
If you are unsure about how to start, you can contact our WebRTC team of experts and we’ll be happy to help you build your business video conferencing solution.