What is the difference between proprietary conferencing and standards based videoconferencing?

Proprietary conferencing services are subscription based and usually attached to an annual or multi-annual contract. These solutions are only designed to work within each operating framework.  In other words if your company subscribes to GoToMeeting they cannot conference to a company who subscribes to Webex or GoMeet Now or the endless variety of other services. Additionally many of these services require a separate audio bridge connection with no or limited videoconferencing capabilities.  End users get frustrated because they have to download many applications to conference with everybody using different services.  It’s like having separate cell phone contracts – with Sprint, AT&T and Verizon because these services couldn’t connect to each other.

The problems with proprietary conferencing are:  Limited or no videoconferencing capabilities; each service has its own proprietary algorithms; does not support bidirectional mobile video on multiparty calls; and does not accommodate Unified Communications. Proprietary conferencing services operate essentially in isolated communication silos.

Standards based videoconferencing is a standard platform that allows a seamless connection to any hardware or software endpoint. There are thousands of executive quality videoconferencing rooms worldwide. These conference rooms are public and connect to each other through the ITU, (International Telecommunications Union), standard algorithms. They can connect to endpoints to any company with any videoconferencing equipment as long there is access through their firewall.

Part of the ITU’s mandate includes improving telecommunications infrastructure and foster seamless interconnection of communication systems.  In this effort the ITU develops and establishes worldwide communications standards.  This is critical to videoconferencing technology as these standards allow all end points to connect seamlessly just like our cell phones; email addresses and land lines.

Currently you can share data from your computer on a videoconference seamlessly through the H.239 standard.  H.239 pushes 2 video sources simultaneously to the other end.  This one ITU standard, over time, will make GoToMeeting, Webex and other proprietary conferencing solutions obsolete.  End users want the benefits of videoconferencing and collaboration without worrying about who is subscribed to what service. They just want to call; videoconference and collaborate without downloading anything that only talks to one proprietary conferencing service.  Now videoconferencing with the H.239 collaboration standard is as easy as making a cell phone call or sending an email without the worrying about who subscribes to what.   Click here for illustrated comparison.

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