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Holding Meetings or Rosary Groups by Zoom or Skype or MS Teams

 

ZOOM SOFTWARE SKYPE SOFTWARE MS TEAMS SOFTWARE

Zoom is by far the most popular software for Video Conferencing today.

Zoom has better functionaility than Skype and MS Teams in that it allows all the features of the others but has the added advantage of allowing the Host of the Meeting / Prayer Group of controlloing who speaks. Zoom allows you also to view up to 25 people on screen simultaenously (others over 25 will appear on subsequent pages up to the maximum allowed for your plan)

However there are two seperate plans on Zoom.

The first plan is FREE - yep that's right totally free of charge. This might be suitable for Rosary Groups as it is time limited to 40 minutes and allows 100 people to join in.

The 2nd plan, which is better suited for Meetings costs £11.99 per month per Host. This has a 24 hour time limit on Meetings and allows 100 participants.

Both have security fetaures that will set up the meeting for you and give the Host the Meeting Room ID (where others join the Meeting) and the password (used to access the room). This allows the Host to invite as many as 100 people to join the Meeting / Rosary Group.

It is simple to use as it allows you to send all the information to your partiipants and they can join the meeting by either downloading the Zoom software to their devices (PC, iPad, iPhone, Smart Phone, Smart Pad) or allow them to join using the www.zoom.com website itself.

DOs

DO have a look at https://www.zoom.us/pricing for the prices relevant to you and the plans available.

DO have a look at https://www.zoom.com for all the features available - including muting all participants, recording the Meeting / Rosary Group to review later.

DO KEEP THE MEETING DETAILS as much of a secret as you can. Unscrupulous people may want to try and gain entry to your Meeting to disrupt it (ask those joining not to put the Meeting Details on Social Media [especially the Password] or to give them to others without your permission).

DO utilise the "MUTE" fetaure to allow people to speak when the ocassion is warranted.

DO remember that those entering late will be "unmuted" so do remember to check otherwise the Meting / Prayer Group may be disrupted.

DON'Ts

DON'T allow people you don't know into the Meeting Room - utilise the waiting room feature. This allows you to let certain people join the meeting / Prayer group and not others.

DON'T let your meeting get oversubscribed. If perchance one of your participants loses connection to the meeting, if you are oversubscribed, the next person in the waiting room will enter automatically (once the Meeting has started) and the person who lost communication will not be able to re-enter.

DON'T allow people to "unmute" themselves.

Skype has been around for 17 years and features have changed quite a bit over this time period.

Skype allows you to invite people to a Skype Meeting by email and SMS. However the SMS feature is only delivered when the other person logs into Skype!

Skype offers face to face calls and meetings but in Meetings will only allow 6 people on screen at one time.

Skype allows you to organise Meetings from Outlook as well as it's own scheduler.

Skype allows presenters to have access to the controls of the Meeting (Mute/Unmute, Block videos, hide names, invite other people to join) which may be good features to have but not if it causes disruption to the Meeting / Prayer Group.

Skype is also FREE - yep that's FREE OF CHARGE again, and allows up to 250 people to join for Free also.

However all users have to download and install Skype software to their devices to use it.

DOs

DO have a look at https://www.skype.com/en/ for more information.

 

MS Teams software is free to anyone who has an Office 365 account although there is a free option of using Teams.

It has a very large participant level of 10,000!!! However, once again you will be limited on how many people can be seen on screen.

MS Teams allows you to screen-share. This means that you can show all those in your Meeting a slideshow, video, document etc from your screen.

However it has a paid plan if you want people to be able to dial-in to the Meeting using a phone.

It is also difficult to mute participants whilst Meetings are ongoing.

DO's

DO check your plan level and see if it meets your needs

DO run a test Meeting

DO ensure that the secuirty features mean that only participants you wish to join can join.

DON'T's

DON'T assume that you will get everything you need in the free version. Check to make sure it is what you need

DON'T forget to check https://www.microsoft.com/en-gb/microsoft-365/microsoft-teams/online-meeting-solutions for the various plans and prices before you use it.

 

This has not been in any way an exhaustive DOs and DON'Ts of these software programs. We strongly suggest you do some research on each choice to see which ine best suits your needs.

We would suggest that you try each Free version first and see which one you like best, which one you can work with, or which one is easiest for your participants to join in (remember we are not all technologically minded).

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