3 Apps to Make Mobile Conference Calling Easy
Busy entrepreneurs know this better than anyone else: when you're on the road, communicating with your employees isn't always easy.
Say, for instance, you leave a client's office with four pages of notes on a big project. Ideally, you'd want to meet with everyone involved while it's fresh in your mind. But your developer is in New York, your copywriter is in Atlanta and the marketing manager is sitting at the airport in Los Angeles waiting for a plane.
Good thing the wonders of technology have made it so distance is no longer an issue. With one of these three conference call apps on your mobile phone, rounding up your employees for a quick meeting is easier than assembling a group in the office.
If you've ever been confused by who said what during a conference call, you'll most likely appreciate Voxeet's 3-D sound, speaker recognition feature. Photos of everyone on the call appear around a virtual conference table. When a person on the right side of the screen speaks you'll see a visual cue and hear his or her voice in your right ear.
Voxeet's high-definition sound reduces echo and background noise, so everyone comes in loud and clear. If you need to have a word with only one participant, the Whisper feature allows the two of you to speak quietly while still listening to the conference call.
With Voxeet, you can make team calls with one click or set the app to "Always-On" mode for quick chats throughout the day. You can also switch from desktop to mobile or vice versa while you're on a call.
You can eliminate the need for traditional conference call phone numbers, passwords and pins with Speek. When you sign up, you create your own, simple, URL. You can use your name or your company name.
To invite others to join you, email, text or send a calendar invite with the URL. The recipient clicks, types in their own phone number, and they're connected.
Speek is free for calls with up to five people. The $10 a month Pro plan includes calls with an unlimited number of people (though no more than 15 is optimal), the ability share files and record calls – a very useful feature.
This conference call app features a colorful interface and automatic social media connections so you can learn more about all of the participants just by clicking their picture.
You can initiate a call by sending a link or, if you have the pro version, the app will dial everyone at the appointed time so all they have to do is answer the phone. If you value participation, check out the post call summary list of who talked the most and who talked the least.
The Uberconference app has large, brightly-colored buttons with labels like "evict" (remove a person from a call) and "earmuff" (mute the sound for one or more participants).
Uberconference is free for calls with up to 17 people but you'll have to listen to a brand message at the start of each call. Eliminate the branding with the $10 Pro plan which handles up to 100 people. It also includes call recording, local phone numbers, personalized hold music and recurring conference scheduling.
Cynthia Boris is a freelance writer based in Orange County, Calif. Covering all things tech and TV, her work has appeared on websites such as Tecca, MarketingPilgrim, SheKnows and io9.