What is Teleconferencing?
A teleconference is live interactive audio or audio-visual meeting shared between geographically dispersed participants through a telecommunication system. The fine examples of teleconferencing involve audio conferencing, telephone conferencing, and phone conferencing. Further teleconferencing can also be divided in terms of video visualizations.
The term “Internet Teleconferencing” is also a type of conference. It includes telephone conferencing, web conferencing, and augmented reality conferences. As it is clear from its name, internet teleconferencing involves internet usage and a good connection for fluent meeting.
History of teleconferencing
Bell Labs did the first telephone conferencing concept in 1956. The first teleconferencing was publicly exhibited in 1964 at the New York World’s Fair, using the device Picturephone. Picturephone was made by American Telephone and Telegraph (AT&T).
Benefits of teleconferencing are:
- Saves Time – It is the most significant advantage of teleconferencing. It saves a lot of time through it; meetings can be held in a short period. Further, no time is wasted in traveling and having the extra hours of the sessions. Apart from all this, teleconferencing also builds punctuality as the meetings are scheduled and held on time.
- Save Travel Expense – Besides saving time, teleconferencing also helps keep travel expenses. Teleconferencing removes the extra fares that are caused by traveling. Meetings can be held up from thousands of miles.
- Meetings Are Recorded – This can be a significant advantage for a company as the discussions held and the actions performed are kept recorded for a longer duration. The essential data of the companies are also stored as a track record.
- Reliable – Teleconferencing is one of the most reliable ways to hold and be a part of a meeting. This reliability has been increasing with time due to advanced technologies. The teleconferencing channels are considered more stable and comfortable in the present times. The mode is also very secure, thus making it a trusted medium for holding meetings.
Advantages of teleconferencing in business
The main advantage of teleconferencing in business is cost reduction for group meetings because teleconferencing can reduce travel costs. Based on the National Travel Association, teleconferencing can reduce costs by $5 billion annually in the US. Another benefit in business is that all meetings are recorded, and data can be used in companies.
Advantages of teleconferencing in education
Teleconferencing has excellent advantages in the education industry because it can reduce costs and travel expenses and enable educators to educate people regardless of their geographical location. For example, educators can teach people foreign language online, and all written documents, meetings will be recorded and make teaching productive.
Cons of Teleconferencing
1) Technical Challenges – This is the biggest issue, as there is no trust in any gadget. Technical challenges can interrupt the teleconferencing system at any time. If a person lacks the knowledge of using a teleconferencing system, then there are always chances of blunder creation.
2) Less Effective Communication – In business communication, teleconferencing is considered a less useful model. This is due to the verbal difference of a person who can destroy the meeting’s dignity at any time.
3) Discourage Team Work – This is another negative point of teleconferencing. As in real conferences, participants have some issues, and they free to raise them at any moment, but in the case of teleconferencing, this practice cannot be performed. It creates a gap between the flow of ideas between the members.
Looks Less Professional – In face-to-face meetings, the character and body language reflect professionalism, but this professionalism is affected in teleconferencing. This is because the participants can be involved in dual work or not available with their entire focus at work.