September 1, 2021

Zoom Alternatives for Hosting Virtual Events [2021]

Editorial
Innovation

As pandemic safety measures like social distancing, remote work, and virtual and hybrid events took over the world, many people discovered how useful accessible live streaming services can be.

Zoom has been the go-to choice for millions of workers, friends, and family since 2020, and they’ve seen their business soar. But, some organization might be wondering if there are alternatives to Zoom that work better for their unique business needs, whether that be if they're cheaper, easier to use, or offer more customizable processes.

So, if you are asking yourself, “What can I use besides Zoom for virtual events?” read on for our overview of the best Zoom alternatives in 2021.

Why Would I Want a Zoom Alternative?

A Zoom alternative can give you unique solutions that might better fit your organizations’ needs, whether this is based on budget, accessibility, or customer support.

 

In addition, after Zoom’s issues with privacy, security, and Zoom bombing, other video chat services like Google Hangouts, Skype, and others have rushed to add new functionality and features that make them safer alternatives to Zoom.

 

For larger businesses, paying for Zoom may make sense because of the significant features it offers, but for smaller organizations, you might want a more affordable option with personalized customer support.

 

Of course, Zoom also has some limitations that can affect meetings and conversations, along with sporadic screen freezing and lagging issues, but note: technical issues will be standard on all live streams. Technology has problems, like everything else, so we can't fault Zoom or any other live streaming service for that! 

 

Best Alternatives to Zoom for Live Streaming

Here is our list of the best alternatives to Zoom for a virtual events or classes.

 

1. Google Meets

Google Meets is a cross-platform vide conferencing app from Google. Google Meets is best for businesses who are already using Google’s Calendar and Drive.

Pros

  • Easy to set up different user groups, which is great for businesses with various departments
  • Setup and implementation is straightforward
  • Good if your work domain for email links to Gmail
  • Integrated across all Google applications,

Cons

  • Must set up a separate Meet chat to send videos back and forth
  • Pop up notifications could be better
  • You need a Gmail to join calls

Pricing: Free

 

2. Televeda

Televeda is a virtual & hybrid events management platform that offers live, virtual-hybrid social events on their proprietary live streaming platform designed for tech-shy users, from older adults to employees who might need some encouragement to use technology. While geared to a specific demographic, the platform can work for any sized business that adapts the helpful event planning and management features.

Trackable activity metrics also let you analyze data reports for each event, while instructor feedback ensures a great user experience.

Pros

  • Accessible live streaming with senior-friendly user interface
  • Easy-to-use technology with no passwords or logins required 
  • Human tech support is available by phone, email, live chat, and more
  • Cloud-based infrastructure with no downloads required

Cons

  • Businesses may prefer to purchase software than use a web-based system
  • Primarily for events and classes, not work meetings

Price: Free for individual seniors to join the virtual community, while organizations can book a free demo.

 

3. Skype

Skype offers VoIP-based voice calls, video conferencing, and video telephony over desktop, mobile, and game consoles.

Pros

  • Video stream is good quality
  • Has capability to transfer extensive files over chat
  • Works with slow internet speeds
  • One of the most established live streaming options

 

Cons

  • Pop-up windows may interrupt conversations
  • Audio may have problems if there are numerous participants
  • Less features THAN XXX

 

Price: Basic service is free. Call features to cell phones and landlines start at $2.99 per month and go up from there.

 

4. Join Me

Join Me offers online meetings, screen sharing, and team collaboration across its platform.

 

Pros

  • Screen sharing works well
  • Reliable connections that stay stable
  • Intuitive user interface, which is very easy for a beginner to learn
  • Recording feature is good for creating produce demos

 

Cons

  • Quality may drop when using cellular data
  • Using mobile devices may decrease the quality and usability

Price: Basic service is free. Or, you may choose from three service levels at $10, $20, or $30 per month.

 

5. Go To Meeting

Go To Meeting is a web-hosted app developed by LogMeIn. It offers desktop sharing, online meetings, and video conferencing software to connect people in real-time.

Pros

  • Good quality audio and video
  • Easy to share screens
  • The number of participants can be up to 500 people at a time
  • You can create pools to streamline the interaction

Cons

  • Large meetings may experience lagging
  • Pricing may seem expensive compared to other services
  • Using mobile devices may cause issues with connection

Price: The service offers three options at $19, $29, or $49 per month billed annually.

 

6. WebEx

WebEx is a service from Cisco. The service offers an array of services delivering web conferencing and video conferencing solutions. They’ve recently updated all of their video conferencing and webinar options to compete with Zoom for the rising demand of live streaming options.

Pros

  • High-quality video and audio sharing
  • Easy to share screens and documents
  • Good chat and private messaging

Cons

  • The app can lag at startup
  • Screen controls sometimes fail
  • No audio notification when someone raises a hand

Price: Basic plan is free, with advanced options up to $25 per month. Customizable services may cost more.

 

What is the best free Zoom alternative?

This answer depends on your specific live streaming needs. Almost all of the options on this list have free plans, but features will be limited depending on your price point.  

Of course, we're a bit biased towards Televeda. You can create your own events or attend any of our current programs to save you all that time planning the event. If you’re looking for a platform that can be specialized for your organization virtual event needs, why not get a free demo right now

Final Thoughts on Zoom Alternatives

Live stream video conferencing is here to stay, and it’s not just for enterprise-level businesses. You have many options, each with pros and cons, so it’s best to compare services to find what works.

Plus, definitely take a look at these posts to help you on your virtual event journey:

  1. Best Virtual Event Management Platforms
  2. How to Host a Hybrid Event 2021
  3. Tips for Beating Online Zoom Fatigue
  4. Using Virtual Programs to Engage Older Adults
  5. Online Programming Options for Senior Communities in 2022


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