Amazon has now taken on Google, Microsoft, Cisco and other enterprise video conferencing platforms with the launch of frustration free online meeting platform “Amazon Chime”. The e-commerce giant is looking to transform meetings by tackling the major pains of other video conferencing platforms like Skype for Business, WebEx & GoToMeeting claiming to have better audio and video quality than it's competitors.
Last year in November, Amazon acquired Biba Systems, a San Francisco-based company that makes chat, video and audio conferencing tools for businesses. Given the time Amazon took to launch Chime after acquiring Biba indicates that Amazon had been planning to launch their own video conferencing platform for quite some time.
Amazon Chime works across multiple platforms, including Android, iOS, Mac and Windows on standard PCs. No Linux support or any indication of future release is indicated in the launch.
Chime claims to knock out the unnecessary distractions with other enterprise meeting solutions. One of these features is allowing users to switch devices during the call. If one device fails, Chime allows you to switch between devices and rejoin - you don’t need to remember long pins to rejoin the call.
Now instead of relying on calendars to send you notifications before the meeting. Chime will automatically call all the attendees before the meeting begins. If an attendee is running late, they can also notify other attendees about the delay.
Amazon Chime introduces a visual roster. The “roster” not only displays the attendees in the meeting but also displays the current status of the attendees - live, late and even for users who are facing technical issues on call.
Keeping in alignment with solving pain points of other enterprise solution, Amazon included a ‘mute’ button for other participants. If an attendee’s mic has a bad reception or is receiving a lot of background noise, other attendees have an option to mute a particular participant, helping them work through the meeting without having to listen to all those awkward noises.
Amazon Chime has come up with a very competitive pricing point. It is available in three editions - Basic, Plus and Pro. With a storage up to 1GB per user, Chime can connect up to 100 attendees. The basic version, which is free, works for two users only. Pricing for Plus edition is $2.50 per month with the add-on of screen sharing feature and works with corporate directories. Pricing for Pro edition is $15 per month which includes video meetings for up to 100 people.
Amazon signed up with AWS partners - Level 3 and Vonage & have released their Pro edition for all the Vonage business customers free of cost.
Amazon hopes to replicate its success in AWS cloud sphere with the new real-time communication platform ‘Chime’, and will definitely give enterprise players like Skype for Business, GoToMeeting and WebEx, Zoom a run for their money.
RTCWeb team tried it out and is eagerly waiting for the APIs to kick in and help clients integrate it with their existing video conferencing solution. Give it a spin, definitely worth a try and let us know how it goes in the comments.
Published on: Feb 17, 2017