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Amazon's New Video Conferencing App In Focus

Amazon Web Services has introduced a cloud-based video conferencing service designed for business use and it could be a rather disruptive force in the digital meetings space. 

Available on all major platforms including Android, iOS, Windows and Mac, the new Chime offering from Amazon allows users to set up meetings, engage in VoIP and video calling, instant messaging and screen sharing (similar to both Google Hangouts and Skype for Business). 

“It’s pretty hard to find people who actually like the technology they use for meetings today. Most meeting applications or services are hard to use, deliver bad audio and video, require constant switching between multiple tools to do everything they want, and are way too expensive,” said Gene Farrell, Vice President, Enterprise Applications, AWS. “Amazon Chime delivers frustration-free meetings, allowing users to be productive from anywhere. And with no ongoing maintenance or management fees, Amazon Chime is a great choice for companies that are looking for a solution to meetings that their employees will love to use.”

Chime's Basic Edition will let two users access the features for free, while the Plus Edition comes with Active Directory management, 1GB of messaging space per user, and the ability to add an entire e-mail domain for $2.50 per user per month. Chime's Pro Edition offers the video calling and screen sharing features as well as unlimited VoIP calling, and costs $15 per user per month.

Amazon has also reportedly partnered with Level 3 to bundle Chime into the Tier 1 telecommunications service provider's collaboration solutions. Internet telephony provider Vonage will also start offering Chime's Pro Edition to its business customers at no additional cost. Integration with Level 3 and Vonage will begin in the second quarter of the year (2017).

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