A Look At The Different Audio Conference Calling Services

By: Tony Kwins

A typical audio conference call is simply a telephone call but with a difference. That difference being the ability for several people to join in or just listen in on the call. Which explain the conference bit. You have total control over which people can have a say and which people can listen in on the conference. If you own a large franchise and wanted to update all departments at once without getting unnecessarily interrupted. Just one example of the advantages of such a control.

The professional industry term for these services is ATC or Audio Tele-Conference. Companies who work nationally or internationally are the main users of such services. Managers and staff can run international franchises from one place and communicate like never before with a conference call service. Co-workers are able to keep up sufficient contact without tonnes of individual phone calls. And in the end you save time and of course, money in a hectic and expensive business world.

Now I am going to go through the three main kinds of conference call services available. Lets begin with the Conference Bridge. Simply put, a conference bridge is a businesses own private telecommunications network.

This will enable all departments within a company to keep in constant contact with one-another whenever it is necessary for free. Outside calls will still cost money. And of course, you also make conference calls as well. Conference calls enable you to host international meetings from your own office and minimises travel expenses. Conference bridges are highly technical services though and they require specialist operators to keep things running. And it will probably come as no shock that professional operators won't come cheap. All the equipment, installation and maintenance are not particularly cheap either. Over time a conference bridge can help minimise costs but they're not cheap to set up initially. This is why we only normally see conference bridges in large companies.

Smaller companies do not really to use conference call services quite so much but if they need to they can use a normal land-line telephone. They cost a little bit extra compared to a normal phone-call but there are no running or maintenance fees to worry about. All services are inclusive in the price. You should never have any problems so long as you have a good telephone service provider.

Nowadays, with the constant explosion of internet services, more and more people opt for Instant Messenger services such as Skype. These handy programs make it totally free to communicate with any other users all over the world. Skype is the most popular messenger and it's my personal favourite also. The controls are easy and it works great. You can also make calls to land-lines and mobiles or even make video calls. You can purchase credit to call land-lines and mobile phones anywhere on the planet. Saying that though the calling rates are not all that much cheaper then my home phone. All Skype users can chat for free though by typing, phoning and even video calls.

So lets have a quick recap. A conference bridge is the favoured option for big corporations. These help save costs in the overall picture but are expensive to purchase and maintain. You can make conference calls from any land-line. These cost more then a typical land-line phone-call but are sufficient for infrequent conference callers. Then there's the modern age of online instant messengers which cost absolutely nothing to make one to one or conferences between users of the same messenger. So it would make sense for everybody involved to install a copy of the same instant messenger.

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I am called Anthony Kwinz and I am a virtual office enthusiast. I run a blog site - www.virtualconferenceoffice.info where I aim to offer useful information related to virtual office such as conference calling services.

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