VSee vs. Skype: Free Group Video + Fast Screen Share
By Milton Chen, VSee
Skype changed the world with its free Voice-over-IP (VoIP) service alternative in 2003, proving to the industry that you can have great audio quality without a telcom’s dedicated lines. Since then it has added video conferencing and screen sharing to its service, touching and connecting 1B people. At VSee, we are huge fans of Skype, what its founders were able to do, and what its engineering team continues to do even as we point out its group video conference and screen share limitations. While VSee is similar to Skype, it’s simple design provides a high quality group video that’s free and a faster way to screen share.
Advantages Over Skype:
- Higher quality video works well over 3G networks and in developing countries
- Ability to share applications instead of only desktops protects your privacy
- Endpoint to endpoint encryption keeps off-the-record conversations private
- Group video chat is free
Optimized For Use Over 3G And In Developing Countries
VSee uses less than 50% of the bandwidth of Skype at the same video quality, hence offering you a better experience in bandwidth-starved situations such as at public WiFi hotspots, over 3G wireless connections, or in countries where the network infrastructure is still developing. VSee’s novel network sensing algorithm is “light” on your network, where it continuously senses the instantaneous network capacity and adjusts to video quality.
VSee vs. Skype Network Performance
*Measurements taken with a third-party application (NetLimiter 3)
|Resolution||VSee download / upload usage||Skype download / upload usage||Skype Support Bandwidth Recommendation|
|320 x 240p||81 / 72 kbps||423 / 306 kbps||300 / 300 kbps|
|640 x 480p||154 / 149 kbps||530 / 472 kbps||500 / 500 kbps|
|1280 x 720p (HD)||513 / 492 kbps||1470 / 1340 Kbps||1.5 / 1.5 Mbps|
Skype 320 x 240p
VSee 320 x 240p
Skype 640 x 480p
VSee 640 x 480p
VSee 1280 x 720p
Share Applications, Not Your Entire Desktop
With Skype, application-sharing is done by either sharing the entire desktop or a region of your desktop. But what if you need to check your email while sharing a PowerPoint? There is the potential for exposing private or embarrassing information.
In contrast, VSee allows you to easily share a specific application. Simply bring any application to the foreground and click on the “Share” button in the top right corner of the application window. This user design naturally protects your privacy by showing a window only if you you intentionally choose to show it.
Another key advantage of VSee application-sharing is that you can continue to see others’ faces even while sharing. In Skype, you are not able see the video of the person who is sharing his/her desktop, making it impossible to observe meeting nuances and facial expression. Having video allows you to adjust the pace of the presentation and know when people are confused or attention wanes — just as you would in person.
Encrypted Off-The-Record Conversations
Like all companies making money off advertising, Skype acknowledges collecting users’ communications. It is also a popular medium to transmit viruses (see the latest exposure here). You might also want to check out this PC World article on why you should be concerned if you are a Skype user.
VSee is designed to be secure from the start. It uses an open industry standard, FIPS 140-2 certified, 256-bit AES encryption on all control and media traffic. All data is always encrypted end-to-end, and VSee uses RSA public/private key to exchange the AES session key such that VSee servers do not have access to the AES session key. This means only the people in your conversation can decrypt content received through VSee. VSee is trusted by security-conscious groups such as the Navy SEALs, U.S. Congress, and NASA Mission Control. See VSee Security for additional information.
Free For Personal And Commercial Use
Skype group video chat costs $8.99 per month. VSee allows unlimited group video for free.
So Why Skype?
Of course, Skype is an excellent service if you’re on a good network and don’t have to be too concerned about data security. In addition, you can
- make phone calls to recipients on traditional telephone networks
- be part of the 663 million registered Skype users as of September 2011
- Skype from almost any platform: desktop (Windows, Mac OS X, Linux), mobile (iOS, Android, Symbian) and smart TVs
Credits: Skype via Wikipedia
Credits: Skype via iskysoft
Skype-related blog posts
- VSee vs. Skype: Three Key Differences
- Ode to Skype
- VSee is nimble. VSee is quick. VSee is your collaboration wish.
- Sold! And Skype goes to… Microsoft?
- Skype and Facebook
- Skype and GotoMeeting, together at last?
Testimonials from VSee users
“Compared to Skype, VSee is more powerful and simpler to use. I got my first call going within 2 minutes. The video is amazing.”
— Matthew Tillotson, Scalar Partners
“After hours of dropped Skype calls from Afghanistan, we gave up. With VSee – one click, and it worked every single time.”
— Kim Guevara, Apex Performance Strategies
“We use video where security, performance, and ease of use are absolute requirements. VSee is unmatched by any other tool on the market.”
— Michael Helfrich, CEO of Blueforce Development Corporation
“I love it, VSee vs Skype for me was noticing that Skype not only froze my computer, but 90% of the time crashed my computer entirely! It was madness! I even went from a single core, 32bit OS that was crashing with Skype, to a 64bit dual core OS, that Skype still crashed, and on 4x the RAM as well! Now that I’ve gone VSee, I can play D&D over the internet with several of my friends back in my hometown all at the same time! This is where I say: Sorry Skype, MSN, and Y!M, but I’ve found something that functions the way I want it to, and that’s simply the way VSee is designed to operate. Keep up the good work VSee staff!”
— Shadow (from comments of the VSee blog)
Last updated: Nov 14, 2012