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Look at a US map for me. America is shaped like a failed omelet.
If you’re in SF (the west end of the omelet) and the person you’re working with is in NY (the east end,) you’re talking a 5.5. hour flight.
The time outlay alone would make in-person meetings a shitty option.
So you have two choices. here. Ditch the meeting, or have it without changing locations. If you can’t ditch, it’s video conferencing to the rescue. Good news - I’m here for you.
If you don’t know Skype, you’ve been living under a rock somewhere. Skype is the big daddy of video conferencing. You can make voice and video calls, share files, use IMs, etcetera. Best of all, it’s free if you’re both on the platform.
If the other person isn’t on it, or is unwilling, you can still call their landline or mobile. The only real trouble is you can’t do much besides the functions I just mentioned.
So if you need something with a little more juice, let’s move on.
Developers take note! This is the option most geared to you. Go code collaboratively.
With this you get multiple mouse cursors, fast screen sharing and voice chat, plus it works cross-platform. Whether you’re on a Mac and the other guy’s on Windows, Screenhero works for both of you. It has encryption capabilities too.
Compared to Skype, Screenhero is about working with someone, not just communicating.
(Plus Screenhero is a Y Combinator startup. Expect good stuff.)
Unlike Skype and Screenhero which you have to download, this one is browser-based.
The folks at Lifehacker say “it’s got the office-like immediacy that Skype lacks, but without the noise of Google Hangout.” Think of it this way - it’s like having the office with you in your browser. You can share files, talk on video, plus there’s the steroidal chat feature.
(We’re talking links, images, code, tweets, etc. over chat. Beats text chat by a damn mile.)
The only bad thing is, Sqwiggle doesn’t have screen sharing yet. But the website says the team is working on it, so expect things to get better on that front.
Fun fact: used by folks at Zapier, Buffer, etc. So rest easy - great companies use it too.
Pick who you are:
See? It depends on what you need. But now you can choose without hassle and confusion.
Happy video conferencing!