9 Best Conference Call Services of 2020 Compared (w/ Free Options)
Are you looking for the best online conference call service for your business?
With the rising trend of remote working, many businesses rely heavily on conference calls, group video calls, and group team chats. There are tons of great free and paid conference call services in the market, but how do you pick the one that’s right for your business?
In this article, we’ll compare the best online conference call services and software to help you manage remote teams, improve communication, and grow your business.
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Nextiva app works on all devices (Android, iPhone, laptop, and desktop computers). You can use it to receive phone calls on the go, at home, or in the office.
It is perfect for remote teams because Nextiva makes it super easy to add team members and set up call forwarding rules based on departments.
Their audio call quality is excellent, apps are easy to use, and they offer incredible customer support. Their platform also includes CRM, LiveChat, and other wide-range of features you’ll need to manage your business.
The only downside is that their video call feature is a bit limited.
Note: We use Nextiva on WPBeginner for our virtual business phone number. In our experience, Nextiva is the best small business phone system in the market from both features and pricing point of view.
Pricing: $20 per month per user, but if you need unlimited conference calls, then you’ll need their pro plan which starts at $25 per user per month.
RingCentral also provide a virtual phone number with mobile apps that allow you to use the same phone number on multiple devices from any location. This works perfectly for remote teams that work from anywhere.
RingCentral platform features include cloud phone, team messaging, conferencing, call-forwarding, auto-greetings, and more.
All RingCentral users can get a free online meeting service, RingCentral Meetings, which lets you have high quality video conference calls with anyone in your team and/or customers.
The free online meetings plan can have up to 100 call participants, comes with screen sharing, but it’s limited to 40 minute calls only.
Pricing: Their basic plan starts at $19.99 / operator per month. You can upgrade to their Office Premium plan $34.99 / month which removes the call restrictions and gives you tons of additional features.
Zoom is a popular online video conferencing and meeting software. If you are only looking for video conferencing and online meeting software, then Zoom is an excellent option.
You can easily set up an online conference call or meeting, and invite your team members by simply sharing a link. It is easy to use and has apps available for all devices including mobile phones.
Zoom offers a free service plan which includes conference calls with up to 100 participants and unlimited 1 on 1 meetings. This is quite enough for most small businesses with remote teams.
The downside of the free plan is that conference calls are limited to 40 minutes duration. This is really frustrating because all attendees will start to see a countdown timer, and at 40 minutes mark, the app will kick everyone out of the meeting room.
Unlike the first two providers in our list, Zoom does not give you a dedicated virtual business phone number. However each Zoom meeting gets a unique dial-in code that participants can use to join via phone, in case they don’t have the app or access to reliable internet.
Pricing: Basic plan is free, but you can upgrade to their paid plan to remove the time limit and unlock other features. Pricing starts from $14.99 / month per host.
Note: Our team uses Zoom for internal team meetings and video calls. Our team leads have the Pro plan, so they can run longer meetings as needed since only the host has to have a Pro account to run unlimited length meetings.
G Suite offers Google Hangout meetings for conference calls and video meetings. It offers secure messaging, chat, audio, and video conferencing for small businesses and teams.
It is also available for free via Google Hangouts apps which also support online conference calls. However, as part of G Suite, you get a professional business email address, cloud storage, Google apps like Calendar, Sheets, Docs, and more.
Unlike some other conference call software on the list, Google Hangouts does not come with a business phone number. Users can join meetings with a dial-in number, but you don’t get any features of proper business phone service.
Pricing: Classic Google Hangouts is free. G Suite’s paid plans start from $6 / month per user. A single G Suite user can run a meeting with up to 100 participants. You can increase the limit to 150 participants (G Suite Business plan), and up to 250 participants on G Suite Enterprise / Education plan.
Microsoft Teams is a multi-purpose communication tool for remote teams and small businesses. It comes with text messaging, group chats, channels, file sharing, and audio / video conferencing features.
It is super easy to set up your small business team. Microsoft Teams works on all operating systems and devices including mobile phones.
The basic software is free for all, but you get even more features with Office 365 which is Microsoft’s productivity suite. Office 365 allows you to get a professional business email and all Microsoft Office apps including Outlook, Word, Excel, and more.
Microsoft Teams also does not give you features of a business phone service. If you need to manage customer calls, then you may still need a phone service.
Pricing: The basic Microsoft Teams is free but you can upgrade to Office 365 which starts at $5 per user per month.
Skype is a popular messaging and audio / video call app. It has been the go-to way to conduct one on one (1:1) conferences and meeting for freelancers, entrepreneurs, and individual users.
It allows you to call local and international phone numbers from your Skype app. You can also get a local phone number from various regions and countries and receive calls on that number.
Skype offers HD video conferencing, screen sharing, call recording, file-sharing, and more. Skype works really great for 1-on-1 calls, but during video conferencing adding more participants degrades the call quality significantly.
Pricing: The basic Skype app is free to use. If you add a phone number or want to make phone calls, then you’ll need to buy upgrades. Pricing varies based on the region and call-rates.
GoToMeeting is another good option for conference calls and online meetings. Their service offers quick online meetings with simple sharing tools allowing all team members to join in using any device.
They have apps for all operating systems including mobile phones, which allows you to conduct meetings on the go.
Optionally, you can also add toll-free numbers to your plan and allow users to dial in to join a conference call.
Pricing: Starting from $12 per organizer per month.
Slack is the popular productivity and communication app for remote teams. It comes with a built-in audio / video call feature allowing you to make conference calls without leaving the app.
As a team collaboration tool, Slack comes with integrations for many popular productivity apps that your team may already be using, like Asana, Google Drive, Google Calendar, Gmail, Zoom, and more.
Slack does not include a phone service, so if you are looking for conference calls with customers or run webinars, then it cannot do that.
Pricing: Basic free plan limited to 10,000 message history and 1:1 calls. Standard plan starts at $6.67 per user per month.
Note: We use Slack for our internal team chats and group messages. Some of our team members use Slack call features when Zoom or other platforms are not working properly.
UberConference is another great free conference call service to communicate with remote teams and customers.
It is super easy to use. You can simply invite users by sharing a URL, and they don’t need to download anything to join in the call. It works on all devices including mobile phones.
The platform include easy screen sharing, call transcripts, custom hold music, schedule call reminders, and apps for all devices.
It is part of DialPad which allows you to integrate a business phone service to your UberConference plan. You can also integrate it with Slack, G Suite, and Office 365.
Pricing: Free plan allows you to add up to 10 participants. Paid plans start at $15 per organizer per month with up to 100 participants.
Which is The Best Conference Call Service?
All the above-mentioned software platforms allow you to conduct conference calls and online video meetings. However, you need to pick the one that best suits your needs.
If you need a business phone service to manage your audio conference calls, then Nextiva is the best option.
If you want an all-inclusive platform (phone + video conferencing), then RingCentral is the best conferencing call platform.
If you are looking for a standalone video-conferencing service, then Zoom is the best since it allows you to add multiple participants without losing quality.
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