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What are the best web conferencing services?

As technology advances at rapid paces each day, more and more companies are finding that web conferencing is an effective, cost-effective way to handle business. Web conferencing is a form of technology that uses an internet connection to hold group meetings or trainings in real-time via the internet. Businesses enjoy the following features web conferencing provides:
- Save money. Web conferencing brings clients and employees together for face-to-face meetings via the internet, so you save money on the costs of gas or airfare when traveling to other locations.
- Build rapport. Business people who utilize web conferencing can build rapport without leaving their office by seeing body language and faces.
- Brainstorm. Web conferencing allows employees to brainstorm with customers or associates in real time, saving a great deal of time.

There are many companies that provide web conferencing services, and there are a number of different types of software available, based on your particular needs and what type of features you would like.

What you can expect to pay will vary based on what you want or need, but there is virtually something for every budget. Basic services, such as VoIP (voice over internet protocol) conference calling on the web, are free. Other services can cost up to hundreds of dollars a month, but those services offer more features. For example, one $200 a month service provides VoIP calls, videoconferencing, dynamic Power Point, and a number of other features.

The Best Web Conferencing Services
We've compiled a list of the best web conferencing services with a variety of different features and pricing.

- Hotconference. This is a good choice for businesses who want a basic system without paying a great deal of money. For $30 a month, you can reach an unlimited number of people. Hotconference uses Voice Over Internet Protocol (VoIP), so it eliminates the need for a phone line or the traditional conference call. One drawback is that it is unable to track past website logins.

- Instant Presenter. This system utilizes a different pricing system. For a basic event, the charge is $ .06 a minute for each person in attendance. However, there are a number of features you can add, such as screen sharing ($.12 per minute per person). Or you can opt to pay for the license upfront; for five people, it's around $165 per month, or abut $235 for ten users. Unlike hotconference, instant presenter allows for complete tracking.

- Macromedia Breeze. Adobe's Macromedia Breeze has handy features such as screen sharing, tracking, chat, and an easily understood interface that makes it great for Web meetings. For five people, Macromedia Breeze will run around $375 per month and $750 for up to ten.

- Raindance Meeting Edition. Recommended for small, impromptu business meetings, Raindance Meeting Edition has a number of features, including an intuitive, user-friendly interface, live video conferencing, application sharing, and other multimedia uses.

- AT&T Conference Services. This service allows you to conduct a meeting via telephone, web or video with up to as many people as you need. Users who like a variety of multimedia features with the integration of video, audio, and data conferencing will want to check into AT&T's Video Bridging Services. Their global teleconferencing allows you to access 56 different countries without leaving your office.

Many companies will allow a trial period, so you can decide if the system really meets your needs before deciding to subscribe.

Finally, did you know that it's possible to sign up for a totally free teleconference service? It's the one we use and recommend!

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