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AlternativeS to Skype for Business

Alternatives to Skype, Nefsis Video Conferencing Screenshot

Nefsis Commentary — December 23, 2010 — The Skype supernode outage earlier today resulted in large-scale publicity and many industry analyst remarks on using consumer online services for business. A complete summary of the fallout is beyond the scope of this short article, but here are three common themes among many recent posts:

1. Businesses should not rely on free consumer online services
2. Business communication services require continuity, or at least alternative methods
3. There are several alternatives to Skype, especially for business customers

Skype peer-to-peer technology has some fundamental disadvantages in business where proxy and firewall traversal may impact successful connection rates. But a larger issue — as shown by the supernode outage — is whether or not businesses should rely on free consumer online services at all. Especially for business- critical applications such as telephone (VoIP call-out).

Besides product features such as security, business-grade services typically operate on a much smaller scale with quality-of-service provisions in place. Moreover, they often have a substantial incentive to guarantee uptime with terms of service that recognize downtime and provide a remedy or other documented penalty for downtime. Consumer online services are free, and they simply offer to restore service as fast as possible. There is no uptime guarantee.

Another common theme among outage-related discussions is the need for business continuity in all communications services. For businesses relying on Skype, that means telephone or other VoIP dial-out service as a ready standby; and for international or other multiparty conferencing applications, a multipoint VoIP alternative such as Nefsis.

There are indeed many alternatives to Skype: Google Talk and Vonage for VoIP; and Citrix GotoMeeting, WebEx and Nefsis, for progressively more advanced web collaboration, video conferencing and secure online meeting applications.

Nefsis Web & Video Conferencing

Nefsis is a software and online service solution designed for business-to-business web and video conferencing. There are several differences between Skype and Nefsis, most notably the Nefsis emphasis on business-grade security and IP connection success, and its much deeper web and video conferencing feature list. A comparison summary appears below.

  • Nefsis was designed for business with no conflicting consumer traffic overhead.
  • Nefsis does NOT use consumer peer-to-peer (P2P) technology, it uses cloud-based communications technology with proxy and firewall traversal for much better connection success rates in business.
  • Nefsis includes multipoint HD video conferencing for desktops and rooms.
  • Nefsis includes web conferencing features such as desktop, application and presentations sharing, plus a long list of advanced collaboration features such as annotation over live applications, media file sharing (play movies), audio/video recording, file hand-outs and more.
  • Nefsis offers integrated telephone dial-out and on-premise server software options for those customers that require higher levels of IT routing, access and security controls.

See Nefsis in Action

Nefsis FREE TrialYou can get entry-level Nefsis Basic for free, or take a free trial of Nefsis Professional. In less than just a few minutes you can activate an account and start web and video conferencing.

You can also schedule a live demo and we'll show you any or all of the multipoint video conferencing and advanced collaboration features mentioned above. Best of all you can schedule the demo anytime convenient for you, and you'll see Nefsis in action right from your own desk so you know it can connect business users over firewalls and proxies on your own network.