Which video conferencing or webinar tool should I use? (Google Meet, Cisco Webex , Microsoft Teams, Zoom)

There are a number of web conferencing tools available to UW-Madison faculty, staff, and students. This document compares the major features of four web conferencing tools: Google Meet, Webex Meetings, Webex Webinars, Microsoft Teams, and Zoom.
IMPORTANT - If possible, password protect your meetings and only share the URL as needed. At this time of remote meeting and learning, we are finding that uninvited guests are joining some public events and are sharing content without permission. If you must host an open event, be sure to verify who can present during the meeting and restrict access as much as possible.
ALSO Many if not most web conferencing technologies will experience issues with users in China. Please see this news item for further details.

Please also look over this policy about collaboration technologies and recordings as they relate to students in particular. If the technology you want to use is not listed in this policy, do not use it for instructional purposes.

Google Meet is available to faculty, staff, and students through the UW-Madison Google Workspace for Education. You must activate a UW Google+ account to use Meet. For details about Meet, click UW-Madison Google Workspace - Getting Started with Google Meet

Cisco Webex (Meetings / Webinars) is available to faculty, staff, and students. This software can be installed on all UW-Madison computers and is accessible for download either via the Campus Software Library or via the UW-Madison Webex portal. For more information regarding Webex, click here.

Microsoft Teams offers chat, calls, and meetings and is available to faculty, staff, and students through the University's Microsoft 365 license. For more information, click Microsoft 365 - Getting Started with Teams.

Zoom is now available at UW-Madison, starting with the Fall 2020 semester. For more information, see UW-Madison Zoom - Getting started.

Non-UW-Madison tools:  Due to FERPA, HIPAA, and other data privacy considerations, campus policy prohibits the use of other, non-sanctioned web conferencing software such as Skype for any University academic or business purposes.

Features Google Meet Webex Meetings Webex Webinars Microsoft Teams Zoom
Max. # simultaneous video (Visible at a time)++ 100 (16) 1000 (25) 1000 (25) 250 (16) 300 (49)
Max. # simultaneous audio 100 1,000 1,000 250 300
Max. # participants 100 1,000 1,000 10,000 (several live event settings must be configured first; see here for instructions) 1,000
Chat feature Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
File sharing capabilities No## Yes Yes Yes Yes
Screen sharing capabilities Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Breakout rooms (Total Number) No Yes (100) Yes (100) Yes (50) Yes (50)
Cost Free to UW Free to UW Free to UW Free to UW Free to UW
Integrated with Canvas No No No No Yes
Remembers content No Yes (some) Yes (some) Yes Yes (Some)
Browser based (no download required) Yes Yes^ Yes^ Yes^ Yes^
Live/closed captioning integration for captioners (e.g. CART) No Yes Yes No Yes
Students can create a session Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Live streaming No Yes Yes Yes (Live events) Yes
Record meeting No Yes Yes Yes Yes
Cloud Recording Retention N/A Yes Yes N/A Yes
Allow external participants (non UW-Madison) Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Bandwidth Requirements Google Meet Webex Meetings Webex Webinars Microsoft Teams Zoom
Application integration Google Workspace for Education (Docs, Sheets, Drive, and more) Microsoft Outlook, Cisco Jabber, Dropbox, Box, Google Drive, IBM Cloud, Microsoft OneDrive Microsoft Outlook, Cisco Jabber Microsoft Suite (Email, OneDrive, and more) View approved application integrations.
Dial-in option Yes Yes Yes No Yes
Dial-out option Yes No No No Yes
Platform Web, Mobile (iOS and Android) Webex Teams, Webex Desktop, Web, Mobile (iOS and Android) Webex Desktop, Web Mobile (iOS and Android) Web, Mobile (iOS and Android) Web, Mobile (iOS and Android)
Blur background No Yes Yes Yes (Mac OS/Win desktop clients) Yes (iPhone only)
Captions Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
FERPA Data Allowed Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
HIPAA Data Allowed+ No Yes Yes Yes Yes (Secure Zoom)
Security Information Meet Webex Webex Teams Zoom
Training Google Meet Training Getting Started: Webex Meetings Getting Started: Webex Webinars Video Training Guides Zoom Video Training
Accessibility and Usability Google Accessibility and Usability Webex Accessibility and Usability Webex Accessibility and Usability Microsoft Accessibility and Usability Zoom Accessibility and Usability

## While Google Meet has no native file-sharing feature, you can share files through Google Drive.

  • These all have a desktop, browser, and mobile version.
    • Attendees can choose to join via any option. (Setting up the room and accessing the full functionality of the product requires the desktop version)
  • HIPAA regulations apply to businesses and individuals in the health care industry such as health plans and health care providers.
    • These are called covered entities, meaning they are covered by HIPAA.
    • UW-Madison is a hybrid entity because it includes units that perform HIPAA-covered functions (such as providing health care) and units that do not.
    • As a hybrid entity, UW-Madison has designated units that perform covered functions, and individuals or units that perform support functions on behalf of those designated units, as its Health Care Component.
  • Max # Simultaneous Video/Audio refers to the maximum amount of participants able to stream video or audio at the same time.

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OwnerHelp Desk KB TeamGroupDoIT Help Desk
Created2014-12-03 11:35:38Updated2024-05-07 11:28:44
SitesDoIT Help Desk, Google Apps, Learn@UW-Madison, Microsoft 365, My UW-Madison Portal, Office of Cybersecurity, Zoom
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