In today's digital age, video calling has become an essential tool for staying connected with loved ones, whether it's for work or play. With the rise of new names like Zoom and Jitsi, as well as the availability of older services like Skype, it can be overwhelming to choose the best video calling app for your needs. That's why we ran 10 different video calling apps through our lab tests to help you make an informed decision. In this article, we'll discuss the top video calling apps for both home use and work, highlighting their features, pros, and cons. So, let's dive in and find the perfect video calling app for you!
Best Video Calling Apps for Home Use
When it comes to video calling apps for home use, several factors come into play, including speech and video quality, ease of use, and security. After conducting our lab tests, we have identified the following apps as the best options:
1. Microsoft Skype - 73% Score Skype, an oldie but a goodie, has topped our tests for home use. With years of development, Skype offers consistently good audio and video quality, making it a great free platform for staying connected. It also comes with a wide array of useful and fun features, such as virtual backgrounds and speech recognition subtitles. Skype is free to use with support for up to 50 people, and you can even make calls to regular landline or mobile phone numbers with Skype credits.
2. Jitsi - 68% Score Jitsi, although lesser-known, is a reliable option for those with patchy internet connections. It performed exceptionally well in our tests under such conditions. Jitsi is free to use and doesn't require sign-up, ensuring data protection. While it may be a bit tricky to use initially, creating a meeting is as simple as choosing a name and sharing it with the participants. Jitsi supports up to 75 people in a call.
3. Discord - 66% Score Discord, primarily used for gaming, offers excellent chat and video calling features suitable for any virtual meet-up. It allows you to create chat groups and provides good video quality even with intermittent internet connections. Discord is free to use and supports up to 25 people in a video call.
4. Google Meet - 61% Score Google Meet, the free version of Google's video calling service, offers acceptable quality for home use. While its video quality may not be as good as others, it copes well with patchy connections. Google Meet is easy to use, works in-browser, and has mobile apps for Android and iOS. The free version allows up to 100 participants, but additional functions like meeting recording require a Google Workspace Business account.
5. Zoom - 59% Score Despite its popularity, Zoom didn't perform as well as other apps in our tests for home use. While it offers good video quality with a stable internet connection, its performance suffers when the connection is poor. However, Zoom has resolved many security issues in its latest update. Zoom is free to use with support for up to 100 people.
Best Video Conferencing Apps for Work
For work-related video calls, different considerations come into play, such as team collaboration features and compatibility with business accounts. Here are the top video conferencing apps for work:
1. Bitrix24 Bitrix24 is a comprehensive video conferencing solution suitable for medium-sized companies. It allows up to 48 people in a call and offers features for team collaboration.
2. Cisco Webex Cisco Webex works seamlessly with physical Webex devices, making it a great choice for organizations that utilize such equipment. It offers good call quality and can handle patchy internet connections.
3. GoToMeeting GoToMeeting, although not free, provides a reliable video conferencing experience. It offers advanced features and is worth considering for businesses that require top-notch performance.
4. Microsoft Teams Microsoft Teams is ideal for large companies, as it allows up to 300 team members in a call. It comes with both free and paid business 365 accounts and offers seamless integration with other Microsoft apps.
5. Slack Slack, known for its strong chat function, also offers video calling features suitable for work-related meetings. It allows shared documents and channels for easy organization.
In conclusion, choosing the right video calling app depends on your specific needs and preferences. For home use, Microsoft Skype and Jitsi are excellent options, offering good audio and video quality, ease of use, and free versions. Discord, Google Meet, and Zoom are also viable choices, each with their own strengths and weaknesses. For work-related video calls, Bitrix24, Cisco Webex, GoToMeeting, Microsoft Teams, and Slack provide reliable solutions with various features tailored for team collaboration. Consider your requirements and make an informed decision to stay connected with your loved ones or colleagues effortlessly.