The stage has been set, the players selected. It’s now time to, once and for all, determine who is the better video conferencing platform – Zoom or Skype. Below are the criteria with which we will use to gauge which video conferencing application is better.
Let’s start with the most important factor when it comes to video conferencing software – video quality. The last thing you want is looking for all pixelated and blurry in your weekly conference meeting with your higher-ups. Both Skype and Zoom take advantage of high definition video, up to 1080p.
This means your computer and internet connection need to be up to the task. The quality of your webcam also factors into the video quality. The good news is that the current internet connection in most developed and developing countries far surpass both application’s network connection requirements.
Skype recommends a connection of up to 1.2 Mbps for high definition video calls. Zoom, on the other hand, demands a little bit more at about 3 Mbps at its highest settings.
Number of participants
It is in the number of allowable participants where we see a huge difference between Zoom and Skype. The free version of Skype is limited to 50 participants. Meanwhile, the paid version, Microsoft Teams, can host up to 250 people in a single video conference. As impressive as that sounds, it still fails in comparison to Zoom.
The free version of Zoom, Zoom Meetings, makes it possible for you to invite up to 100 participants in a single call. The paid version of Zoom increases that number up to 1000 participants, a truly astonishing number. This is one reason why so many lectures are done on Zoom rather than Skype.
Skype recently introduced a new feature where users don’t need to sign up for the service. The service is called Meet Now and it allows users to download the app for video calls. However, many people have pointed out that this feature is very reminiscent of a Zoom’s feature which also allows people to download the app and join in on meetings without having to register on the service.
Both services generate a unique link that can then be shared to users so they can enter the video call. If you are the one hosting the meeting, you can invite virtually anyone, regardless if they’re signed up to Skype or Zoom or not.
And once they are on the call, they enjoy all the features that both services offer. This is especially useful if you have coworkers, students, or classmates who don’t want to sign up for these services.
Both these services have very excellent compatibilities. Skype and Zoom can be used on Windows, Linux, macOS, Android, iOS, and even on a standard web browser. It’s also possible to call in via phone. There’s no excuse not to connect with anyone no matter where they are or what gadget they’re using.
And just when you thought that Zoom has the upper hand over Skype, they are thrown a curveball in the form of security features. Both Skype and Zoom have claimed to have industry-leading security features as well as end-to-end encryption. But Zoom has received a lot of negative press in recent months due to user privacy concerns. They have been forced to hold the release of new features for 90 days in order to fix the security issues.
But despite releasing privacy updates, improving user encryption, and allowing users to disable personal meeting IDs, as well as combating Zoombombing, the company still received backlash when the news of over 500,000 user information has been stolen and was sold online. For the security-conscious individual, they might want to stick with Skype for now, or at least after Zoom fixes all their security issues.
Zoom offers four different pricing packages: Zoom Basic Plan, Zoom Pro Plan, Zoom Business Plan, and Zoom Enterprise Plan.
Zoom Basic Plan, as the name suggests, is the package that is free and commonly used for personal meetings. It can host up to 100 participants with unlimited one-on-one meetings.
Zoom Pro Plan is perfect for a smaller team. It costs $14.99 monthly per user to avail of this package. But with that payment, you get the benefits of the Basic Plan, meaning you can host up to 100 participants in a meeting plus you also get unlimited meeting duration, assigned custom personal meeting ID, assigned scheduler, and meeting reporting. Other features of the Pro Plan include admin controls, management capabilities, REST API, and, surprisingly, Skype for Business interoperability. Users are also allowed to store a maximum of 1 GB of video and audio recording.
Zoom Business Plan
Paying Zoom close to $20 gets you Zoom Business Plan which is exclusively marketed to small companies. Having the Basic Plan, Pro Plan, as well as bonus features, companies on Business Plan can now take their communication to a higher level.
This package allows users to assign up to 10 hosts. It also includes an admin dashboard, phone support, not to mention a vanity URL. You can do on-premise deployment with the Business Plan package.
Zoom Enterprise Plan
The highest Zoom plan package you can avail of is the Enterprise Plan that is also priced at $19.99 per month per user. This plan, besides all the features listed with the Business Plan, allows you to assign up to 100 hosts and increases participant numbers up 200. It offers unlimited cloud storage, a dedicated customer success manager, and executive business reviews. This plan is ideal for large companies, such as Arcane Marketing, with varying conferencing needs.
Skype Business Plan
Skype is popularly known as a video conferencing service that is for free. But if you are looking to increase productivity and boost your revenue, Skype offers an enterprise package for as low as $2 per month per user.
Skype’s Business Plan allows users to host up to 250 participants, more robust security lines that use strong authentication, and encryption.
Skype Online Plan 2 costs $5.50 per month per user and include features such as:
- join meetings on any device
- HD videos and audio calling up to 250 people
- strong technical support
- 50 GB mailbox
- 1 TB file storage
Overall, both Zoom and Skype are two of the best platforms for business. Make it easy to collaborate with remote colleagues by subscribing to these business plans now. It’s up to you on which service to choose. Hopefully, this review will help you create an informed decision.