Amazon takes on Skype and GoToMeeting with its Chime video conferencing app

  • Amazon takes on Skype and GoToMeeting with its Chime video conferencing app

Amazon takes on Skype and GoToMeeting with its Chime video conferencing app

If users want to connect outside of the meeting, there are Amazon Chime chat rooms that allow them to work together and store content to reference later on.

Amazon has unveiled its own Skype competitor, Amazon Chime, a video streaming service designed with business users in mind.

Amazon Chime also has a number of features that WhatsApp has tried to compete with, thanks primarily to the launch of its WhatsApp Web platform, as well as the support for sending and receiving files, including PDFs. It's described as "a new unified communications service that makes meetings easier and more efficient than ever before", and it looks an very bad lot like a direct competitor with Skype.

The new service called Amazon Chime from Amazon Web Services-which provides the online computing power for thousands of businesses-enables customers to have conversations and videoconferences whether they are using desktop computers, Apple iPhones or Android devices. Without a dial-in or PIN needed, Amazon Chime instead alerts all call participants when a meeting has begun, so all you need to do is click one button to be placed into the conference. A free version, Amazon Chime Basic Edition, lets users attend meetings, call another person using voice or video, and use the messaging and chat capabilities.

Amazon Chime carries no minimum fees, with customers paying only for what they use. Users can mute background noise and will be automatically reconnected if they get dropped from the meeting.

Amazon Chime also offers the ability to call pre-approved members all at once rather than rely on passcodes to join, and a visual component that allows members to see who has joined the call to avoid the usual cries of "who just joined?"

The new video chat and conference call software boast similar functionality to Microsoft Skype. A Pro Plan allows screen sharing for up to 100 users and includes unlimited Voice over IP (VoIP) for $15 per user per month.

While Amazon is just making Chime public, the company has been testing the app for a while. When in a meeting, anyone can share their screen, instantly, without asking a host to "pass the ball", or jump to a different application.

Amazon offers a free trial of all the Pro features for 30 days.

Amazon Chime can be integrated with existing corporate directories, and provides IT administrators the ability to manage identities and control access across an organization.