The Lowering Costs of Teleconferencing

A colleague recently alerted me to this Twitpic photo taken by Andrew Back of a book page showing 1982 teleconferencing costs. A three way call could cost up to £250 a go! Just think of the pressure on you to say something worthwhile!!

Teleconferencing still isn’t that cheap. At UKOLN we use BT Conferencing for conference calls and expect to pay approximately £50 for a 3 line 30 minute call.

Despite the rise in use of VOIP conference calls continue to be a fact of life at most organisations that employ remote workers. The key is to get the most we can out of them. I wrote some suggestions on how to do this back in September 2008 – All the Fun of a Phone Conference.

4 thoughts on “The Lowering Costs of Teleconferencing

  1. And that’s not even taking into account thirty years of inflation – any way of working out what £250 in 1982 would work out to at 2010 prices?

    Oof… makes one grateful for ADSL and Skype🙂

  2. I am presently working on one of the JISC/Academy UKOER projects. The programme has made a real effort to try and limit the amount of ‘in person’ conference time and replace it with online conferencing.

    It has been interesting, with many different softwares/systems used. Sometimes it has worked well and other times less so.

    On the whole it has appeared to me that Elluminate seems to work well for big groups with a one-to-many set up, but for smaller groups SKYPE seems to be the way to go. For one-to-one chat there are many systems that seem to work OK, my fave being googletalk, just for its simplicity.

    Both tools do take quite a while to really work out how to get the best out of them.

    But the beauty of SKYPE is of course is just that it works and it is free.

  3. Thanks Ed, I have had a go with Elluminate (see my post on Weighing up Webinars) and a few other webinar products but I haven’t tried Google talk yet. Will have a look.

    Good to hear that the JISC/Academy UKOER projects see online conferencing as important. Hopefully, along with the Green ICT projects, they will demonstrate how effective certain tools can be in supporting virtual teams.

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