When you set up a conference call, people might want to dial-in using a landline, cell phone or an Internet connection. The best platforms allow participants to use a variety of methods to access a conference call. Skype, GTalk and WebRTC Dialer are some useful options. Since it all looks and sounds like alphabet soup, let’s find out what each one means.
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Two Main Types of Access
There are generally two types of conference call access – by phone or by VoIP. Phone access is via a regular phone or smartphone. VoIP uses Internet technology to get you connected. The third type of connection – two cans connected by a string – is no longer used by modern companies.
Conference Call – Phone Access
Phone access can use a local dial-in number which means phone call charges apply. You might want to set up toll free access to make things easier for participants. Most businesses offer this option to maintain good client and partner relations. Sending flowers might be overdoing it though.
Conference Call – Skype Access
To use this type of access, you’ll need a Skype account. Users simply add the conference provider’s Skype ID (e.g. myglobalconference) to their list of contacts. When it’s time to join the conference, you just dial the contact. When prompted, you enter the PIN code and you’re in the conference.
Conference Call – Google GTalk Access
This is very similar to conference call Skype access. You just add the provider’s Gmail (e.g. email@example.com) to your Gmail contacts. When you want to access a conference call, you just click on the ID in your GTalk menu which opens up a chat box.
Next, click the list phone call icon to “call computer” and audio instructions will play. When the voice tells you, type the conference code in the chat box and you’re in. If the voice tells you that you should run naked in the street, ignore it.
Conference Call – WebRTC Dialer
This free connection lets you access conference calls from your web browser. Audio in these cases might even be better than regular land lines. You’ll need a WebRTC compatible browser, like Chrome, Firefox or Opera.
With one click you access the free web dialer (mygc.co/dial). Then enter your conference access code, click “Dial your Conference” and a dialog box will open on top of your browser. Make sure you allow your browser to access to your microphone.
As you can see, there are many ways to access conference calls. This allows you to offer participants a choice. During any call, you could have people participating using several different access methods. Everyone’s happy since they get to choose!
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