This article is part of a larger series on Unified Communications.
The best video conferencing software offers end-to-end encryption, mobile and desktop apps, and meeting recordings. But virtual meeting tools and plans vary widely as to price, number of participants, and included features. Here are the six best video conferencing software solutions with robust security protocols, encryption, affordable pricing, and unique features designed to enhance your team’s remote online meetings.
Based on our review, the best video conferencing software includes:
- RingCentral Video: Best overall, and best video conferencing software for companies wanting a free feature-rich solution for virtual meetings with affordable paid upgrade options
- Zoom: Easiest-to-use dedicated video conferencing solution for team members who are new to remote or remote-hybrid work
- Webex by Cisco: Best video conferencing software for small teams looking for automation features like voice commands and AI assistance for improved workflow
- Microsoft Teams: Top choice for companies seeking a collaborative workspace for video conferencing and chat
- Zoho Meeting: Great option for sales and marketing teams needing a free or low-cost platform for meetings and webinars
- GoToMeeting: Best video conferencing software for businesses wanting robust built-in account management features
Best Video Conference Software at a Glance
Video Conference Software
$14.99 per user, per month
4.51 out of 5
$14.99 per user, per month
4.35 out of 5
$15 per user, per month
4.17 out of 5
$5 per user, per month
4.01 out of 5
$3 per user, per month
3.68 out of 5
$12 per user, per month
3.44 out of 5
RingCentral Video: Best Overall Video Conferencing Software
*Save up to 33% with annual prepayment, and get discounts with 100 or more users. The free Pro plan’s unlimited meeting time limit applies to accounts opened by December 2021.
RingCentral Video earns the top spot on our list of the best video conferencing software for its feature-rich free Pro and paid Pro+ plans, cheaper annual pricing, and high definition (HD) video and audio. The desktop and mobile apps receive high ratings and include features most businesses need, like breakout rooms, content sharing, and meeting recordings.
It’s Health Information Trust Alliance, or HITRUST-certified. The Alliance, formed in 2007, helps healthcare organizations (or any organization) comply with regulations for data management, information risks, and compliance with mandates such as HIPAA and HITECH.
The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA) and the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health Act (HITECH) provide standards for protecting personal health information (PHI). The acts apply to entities like health plan providers, healthcare givers, and in some cases, their business associates.
While many video conferencing platforms can be HIPAA-compliant, the video provider will require a business associate agreement (BAA). Others are made HIPAA-compliant by enabling certain settings to ensure your services meet the standards. Several providers on our list offer HIPAA-compliant video conferencing versions specifically for health services, including RingCentral Video, Zoom, GoToMeeting, and Webex by Cisco.
RingCentral Video also uses end-to-end encryption, so your cloud recordings are protected. Store meeting recordings forever or set them to delete after a period of time with the paid plan. Although RingCentral provides an outstanding free video conferencing plan, you’ll need to upgrade for single sign-on (SSO) and phone support. In this case, you may prefer GoToMeeting, which offers a lower-priced plan with SSO.
- Integrations: RingCentral Video integrates with more than 200 apps, including Google, Microsoft, and Salesforce. Many integrations are built specifically for RingCentral Video, such as RingCentral Pro for Slack, whereas others work for voice-over-internet-protocol (VoIP) and video solutions. Learn more about RingCentral’s VoIP services in our expert RingCentral review.
- Breakout rooms: Create up to 50 breakout sessions during your video conference. In each room, attendees can chat and share whiteboards, audio, video, and their screens. Need more breakout sessions? Try out Webex by Cisco, which supports up to 100.
- Team messaging: Use the message data export tool to customize your search parameters and download messages for compliance with internal policies or industry regulations. Plus, create folders to organize teams and conversations.
Zoom: Best Dedicated Video Conferencing Software for Beginners
*Save up to 17% when paying annually for the Basic, Pro, or Business plans. The Enterprise plan is only available with a yearly prepayment.
Zoom is a popular video conferencing software solution. In fact, an Owl Labs survey found that 72% of businesses with 500 or fewer employees use Zoom. This is due both to its ease of use and free option, which includes 40-minute meetings for up to 100 participants and unlimited duration, one-to-one meetings.
Users can join a session in a browser and seamlessly switch to a video meeting during the chat by simply clicking the video camera button. Zoom’s free version also includes screen-sharing, breakout rooms, and whiteboarding. Plus, video participants can adjust their appearance and use virtual or blurred backgrounds.
Some Zoom users have reported issues with call echoing, where one or more parties hears voices repeating, loudly, after a delayed interval. To ensure high audio call quality, take a look at other Zoom alternatives. Zoom also doesn’t provide meeting transcripts, SSO, or branding until you have 10 paid users. For small businesses wanting these features, consider RingCentral Video.
- Screen-sharing: The free Zoom plan lets you share your desktop or phone screen, one or more apps, or a portion of your screen during a meeting. You can also whiteboard together as a team and annotate documents in real time. Discover more interactive features in our comprehensive expert Zoom review.
- Security: After the Zoom-bombing horror stories of 2020, Zoom upgraded its security and added end-to-end encryption. Other security features include meeting passwords, control entry via a waiting room, screen-sharing controls, and meeting locks.
- Waiting room: Direct some or all meeting attendees to a waiting room and send a message to them there. Let them join your conference all at once or one-by-one. Paid plans also support waiting room customization, such as adding a logo, note, or description.
Webex by Cisco: Best Video Conferencing Software for Advanced Features
*You can save 10% with an annual plan.
Webex by Cisco provides advanced video conferencing features like Facebook streaming, two-way whiteboarding, and a voice-activated intelligent assistant. These tools are perfect for companies wanting to use voice commands to generate meeting notes and improve collaboration.
Although Webex’s entry-tier plan pricing is comparable to Zoom and RingCentral Video, it differs because it allows unlimited free voice calls between Webex users. In addition, Webex’s free version allows slightly longer meetings (50 minutes) compared to Zoom (40 minutes) for up to 100 participants.
Similar to GoToMeeting, Webex comes with an artificial intelligence (AI) meeting assistant. Like Zoom, Webex lets you stream to Facebook and offers recording transcripts, which RingCentral Video also provides. All Webex video conferencing plans are HIPAA- and HITECH-compliant.
Webex by Cisco also offers business phone services for companies looking for unified communications options. However, the call me feature that comes standard with RingCentral Video costs extra with Webex. Likewise, the Meet plan doesn’t include a question and answer (Q&A) feature. In this case, check out Zoho Meeting’s free version, which comes with polling and Q&A.
Webex by Cisco Features
- Facebook streaming: While you can’t share a whiteboard when streaming on Facebook Live, you can change your video layout and choose your audience. This enables you to involve your social media audience and let them play it back on Facebook later.
- Webex Assistant: Webex has a virtual assistant similar to GoTo Connect’s smart assistant. It shows a live meeting transcript with speaker attribution and short notes, called meeting highlights. Give voice commands during meetings or use keywords to automatically capture action items, decisions, summaries, notes, and agendas.
- Interactive whiteboarding: The two-way whiteboarding feature works on both mobile and desktop devices, allowing you to upload one or more files or work from a blank whiteboard. You can use several tools to focus your teams, such as an arrow or laser pointer, lines, shapes, or a pen and pencil.
Microsoft Teams: Best Video Conferencing Software & Virtual Workspace Combo
*The free version originally supported meetings with up to 100 participants and a 60-minute time limit, and it may change back. All paid subscriptions require annual prepayment.
As with many of the best video conferencing software providers, Microsoft Teams saw usage soar in 2020 as businesses shifted to virtual work environments. It’s ideally suited for companies that use Microsoft 365 products and want one workspace for all business tasks.
Unlike the other providers in this list, Microsoft Teams is primarily team collaboration software with features that include video conferencing. If you want collaboration software with virtual communication capabilities but your business doesn’t use the Microsoft productivity suite, you’ll find other options in this article reviewing apps similar to Microsoft Teams.
Microsoft Teams’ video conferencing plans include features similar to other providers. The free version allows 60-minute meetings with up to 100 participants. With paid plans, you can record meetings and get enhanced security features. With all plans, participants can raise their hands to ask questions, customize their background, and turn live captions on and off during calls for clarity.
Paid plans are less expensive and support more meeting participants than other providers on our list. For example, the Business Basic plan costs $5 per user, per month and allows up to 300 meeting participants, compared to $14.99 per user, per month for RingCentral (200 participants) or Zoom (100 participants). Meeting recordings and 10GB of cloud storage are also included in the lowest-paid tier.
Microsoft also owns the standalone Skype platform, which facilitates voice and video calling as well as instant messaging. However, Skype limits video calls to just 50 participants.
Microsoft Teams Features
- Productivity apps: With Microsoft Teams you get more than video conferencing. All plans include free web-based versions of Excel, Word, and PowerPoint. However, you’ll have to subscribe to the Business Standard plan for desktop versions or to get Outlook, Access, Publisher, or Microsoft Bookings, its appointment booking tool. All paid plans come with email hosting and a custom email domain address.
- Usage reports: Although some tools lock usage reports behind higher-tier plans, this feature comes with the lowest-tier version of Microsoft Teams. View activity trends for up to 90 days and see how people use the platform with data about guest numbers, active channels, and reactions.
- In-meeting options: Live captions with speaker attribution offer 28 language options and appear under the video feed, whereas live transcriptions show up on the right side of the screen. Plus, it features Together mode, allowing you to choose a shared background.
Zoho Meeting: Best Video Conferencing Software for Telesales & Marketing
*Additional savings available with an annual prepayment.
Zoho Meeting makes our list of the best video conferencing software because the free version includes webinar and meeting features not found in other free plans. For example, it has advanced webinar analytics, preset and instant polling, and two-factor authentication (2FA). Plus, you can ask invitees to RSVP and automatically send them reminders.
In addition, Zoho Meeting provides many tools and integrations with its free and paid plans that are important for sales and marketing teams. You can take advantage of a pipeline-focused customer relationship management (CRM) program, an email inbox for sales teams, and SalesIQ to increase website conversions.
Zoho Meeting’s premium plans are priced affordably for small businesses and scalable based on the participant capacity needed. This allows small teams to access features typically available only in higher package tiers for as little as $3 per user, per month.
Zoho Meeting Features
- Branding: Add your company name and logo to webinar registration forms and emails, including invitations, reminders, and thank yous.
- Engagement tools: With the free and Webinar plans, you can create instant or preset polls and Q&As. In addition, you can make any attendee a presenter during your webinar or meeting.
- Zoho Meeting integrations: Although Zoho Meeting connects to Google calendars, you can also use the free and paid versions of Zoho CRM, Projects, and Calendar. With Zoho integrations, you can start a meeting from any of these apps.
GoToMeeting: Best Video Conferencing Software for Account Management Features
*Annual prepayment required.
GoToMeeting’s entry tier plan costs less than Zoom, RingCentral, or Webex by Cisco, yet provides advanced features. All subscriptions include SSO, dial-in numbers, and a special commuter mode. Account management tools available in the admin portal provide diagnostic reports, usage details, and security options.
The Business package comes with unlimited cloud recording and searchable transcripts. However, the file-sharing feature is view-only and less functional than other tools, such as those provided by RingCentral Video and Microsoft Teams.
GoToMeeting also lets you monitor and troubleshoot meetings. The admin portal shows how the system is used across your organization, and meeting diagnostic reports give performance insights at the individual level. However, you’ll need to upgrade to a GoTo Connect phone plan to get VoIP features and call reports.
- Security: All plans come with security tools such as SSO, encrypted sessions, meeting locks, password protection, and the ability to dismiss attendees. Plus, GoToMeeting uses a risk-based authentication system that identifies unauthorized devices or suspicious behavior.
- Integrations: Although GoToMeeting offers fewer integrations than RingCentral or Microsoft Teams, it connects with popular software platforms like Zoho CRM, Salesforce, ServiceNow, Google and Outlook calendars, and Okta.
- Enterprise-level tools: All plans include management logs, 24/7 phone and web support, and meeting diagnostic reports. You can also get a quote for the Enterprise plan for larger meetings with up to 3,000 participants, custom onboarding and training options, and a dedicated customer success manager.
How We Evaluated the Best Video Conferencing Software
We examined various video conferencing tools that provide free and paid versions, mobile and desktop apps, and content sharing. We rated each program according to price and features to develop a score showing overall value and ease of use.
The best video conferencing software is RingCentral Video, which scored 4.51 out of 5 based on our criteria. RingCentral Video is a standalone product offered by top business phone system provider RingCentral. Its feature-rich free plan offers online meetings with up to 100 participants, a variety of integrations including Google and Outlook calendars, and 10 hours of recordings.
In addition, RingCentral Video provides task management tools and document storage. Get started by setting up your free account and signing in with your business email or Google credentials.
Learn how we evaluated the best video conferencing software by clicking on the tabs below:
25% of Overall Score
We reviewed the prices of all video conferencing plans, including discounts for annual prepayment. Plus, we looked for free solutions and the length of free trials.
30% of Overall Score
We assessed the amount of cloud storage provided in plans and ensured all platforms stream encryption at rest and in transit. We considered options with high-definition audio and video and desktop apps.
25% of Overall Score
We examined the video meeting capacity of each provider and features included with mobile apps. In addition, we checked for breakout rooms and content-sharing capabilities.
20% of Overall Score
We evaluated details from the best video conferencing software and rated each based on features, overall value for the price, popularity, and ease of use.
As more companies turn to virtual meetings instead of in-person visits, teams need feature-rich, reliable, secure, user-friendly, and sometimes even HIPAA-compliant video conferencing apps. While many solutions exist, the best video conferencing software for your business depends on your budget, required participant capacity, and the features your team needs.
Based on our criteria, RingCentral Video earns the best rating. It provides a robust, free video conferencing solution, and the paid plan boosts meeting capacity from 100 to 200 participants. RingCentral also offers one of the best business phone systems with audio, video, and chat features along with the standalone RingCentral Video conferencing tool. Try out the free video app or start a free trial of RingCentral MVP today.