What Is Live Video Conferencing?

G. Wiesen

Live video conferencing is a method by which people who are separated by potentially great geographical distances can communicate and work together. Different types of software and hardware can be used to facilitate such conferencing, though cameras, computers, and a computer program that allows chat and audio and video broadcasting are typically used. These various programs and devices are used together to allow two or more people to communicate, while also seeing each other and any visual aids they utilize. Live video conferencing can also use similar technology on a larger scale, allowing dozens or hundreds of distant people to see a presentation made by one person.

Live video conferencing apps are common on mobile devices like smartphones and tablets.
Live video conferencing apps are common on mobile devices like smartphones and tablets.

Often simply called video conferencing, live video conferencing can describe different ways in which multiple people can communicate and share ideas over a network. The basic setup required for this type of conferencing typically involves numerous users at computers, with one or more of them using webcams to broadcast audio and video to the other users. All of the users involved in live video conferencing can utilize cameras to broadcast together, though only a single user might broadcast in some setups.

Video conferencing may help reduce a business's travel expenses.
Video conferencing may help reduce a business's travel expenses.

One of the most common uses of live video conferencing is for multiple users to share ideas and communicate during a conference. For example, a dozen different users at different locations can all connect through live video conferencing and communicate through live audio, while also seeing each other. This allows the users to not only share and express ideas more quickly, since they are able to do so verbally rather than through text communication, but also see visual aids to assist in presentations. Some systems used for this type of conferencing can even have built-in tools and utilities for file sharing, allowing the users to communicate and share or modify project files in real time.

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Live video conferencing can also be used to allow a single host to present ideas with a number of different users. This type of conference typically resembles a conference in which a person gives a speech or presentation on new ideas or information to a gathered crowd. Rather than having the attendees assembled in a physical location, however, this type of live video conferencing creates a virtual conference in which all users can see and hear the host. These systems are often designed with feedback utilities, allowing users connected to the system to ask questions and provide feedback in real time during the conference.

Webcams can help conduct a live video conference.
Webcams can help conduct a live video conference.

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