Archive for January, 2016

Best web conferencing software for a small non-profit?

January 19th, 2016

An R-HUB HD video conferencing and web conferencing server (www.rhubcom.com) is an affordable alternative. It supports up to 30 webcams and 8 monitors at each end point to support a telepresence experience. It starts at $1,495. The installation is a plug-and-play. After installed, the server runs 24 x 7. The hardware is a reliable network appliance just like a router and no IT maintenance is needed. The software is self-updated.

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Video Conferencing Issues Solved

January 19th, 2016

R-HUB Communications, www.rhubcom.com , makes video conferencing servers. The biggest issues we have noticed and solved for our customers include:

  1. Bandwidth issues, especially for international attendees. For example, meetings with attendees between the US and China are very difficult. To overcome this, it helps to carefully select the meeting time and avoid peak bandwidth hours. Based on our experience, any time between 10:00am and 9:00pm Beijing time is crowded. In addition to picking a good time to meet, choose a good ISP for your data center so international routing by your ISP works best for the countries where your attendees will be. This is a difficult task. In most cases, you have to test various solutions to find the best solution. We have tested a number of ISPs including Level3 for our data center and we chose Hurricane Electric (HE), which offers the best international routing for both Asia and Europe.
  2. CPU usage issues. Video and especially audio are very, very sensitive to delay. During a meeting, for example, an antivirus tool can start to scan files and use 90% of CPU, which would likely cause audio packets to be dropped producing intolerable audio quality. Advise your attendees to avoid opening a lot of applications during a meeting and to close unnecessary browser pages. Recently we experienced a case where the home page of www.speedtest.net on Internet Explorer consumed a large amount of CPU even without running the speed test; the Javascript on the page consumed so much CPU that the audio quality was adversely affected.
  3. Echo issues. Although all vendors, including R-HUB, have tried very hard to remove echoes, it is just impossible to eliminate it completely for all computer microphones. Avoid a built-in mic, and use a headset whenever possible.
  4. Disconnection issues. A wireless connection is the number one reason for disconnection. It slows down the connection speed also. Note that unlike web page browsing, video conferencing requires a persistent connection. A reliable connection is essential to ensure a smooth meeting experience. Use a wired connection!
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