4 Problems with Video Conferencing

The top reasons video *still* gets a bad rap

Back in the day, when sci-fi movies and TV series wanted to show just how cool the future would be, there would inevitably be a scene where colleagues talked to one another via video conferencing. It was a technology that promised our futures would be full of sophisticated tools and instant gratification. Fast-forward to today and it seems the shiny promise of video has lost its luster in the eyes of many modern workers. To uncover what’s wrong with video conferencing, Highfive conducted a little research and uncovered quite a few insights. Below, we’ve rounded up the top four reasons people hate video conferencing, as well as what you can do to turn those frowns upside down at your workplace. Here are some common video conferencing problems:

4 Common Video Conferencing Problems:

#1: A Legacy of Embarrassment

Leaving a legacy is typically a good thing, but when it comes to technology, it’s not so good. Many people hate video conferencing because they inherited an expensive legacy system that features old-school technology. Unfortunately, out-of-date tech can make your company appear out of touch with the modern working world and leave clients and other video conferencing participants wondering if you’re company is capable of being innovative and agile when the tech being used says otherwise. In short, using tech that requires expensive ongoing maintenance and upkeep in order to stave off becoming obsolete is like using an abacus for a calculus exam – kinda crazy.

Antidote for a Legacy

If a legacy system is your reason for secretly loathing video conferencing, there are a couple of things you can do to make your case. First, try soliciting anonymous feedback from video conferencing participants for support. If a client says they like your company, but hate doing video calls with you, that should be motivation enough. However, nothing is quite as compelling as a cost analysis of your current video situation. A thorough cost analysis will allow you to plead your case to the powers that be with reason, clarity and most importantly, numbers. If the return on the investment is lower than the original and ongoing costs, it’s time to face facts, cut losses, and find a solution that works for everyone.

#2: Experiencing Technical Difficulties

Projecting an aura of confidence and competence is tough when you are trying to launch a video conference and can’t make the system work. A popular reason for people to hate video, technical difficulties add stress and frustration to a scenario that should be quick and painless. In addition, ongoing negative experiences significantly impact adoption and usage rates. Yikes! During our research we found that:

  • 40% of meetings have hardware or software technical issues
  • 26% of employees call IT help for at least half of their meetings
  • 3 minutes is the average time wasted trying to fix tech issues during a video conference

Quick Fix for Technical Difficulties

Instead of resigning yourself to calling IT every time you have a meeting, which wastes your time and theirs, consider taking an inventory of video conferencing systems in your workplace and identifying all those that fall into the category of regular troublemaker. Then, systematically replace the units that aren’t working well, with a system that does, like Highfive.

#3: Does This Video Conference Make Me Look Fat?

Unless you are an A-list actor, you likely feel a bit self-conscious about being on video. Our research found that 59 percent of people feel more self-aware when they are on-camera than they do in their off-camera life. Nearly half (48 percent) of people worry more about how they look on a video call than what they will talk about during the call. Not only that, 34 percent of people who are presenting materials for a video conference admit they spend more time planning to look good on-camera than they do planning their presentations.

Sitting Pretty for Video

If vanity is holding you back from becoming the collaborating, deal-making, video-conferencing rockstar you know you can be, we’ve got a Stuart Smalley affirmation for you: you’re good enough, you’re smart enough, and doggone-it people like you. A few other dos and don’ts we gathered to help you look your best on camera include:

  • Don’t eat
  • Don’t chew gum
  • Don’t sit too close
  • Don’t blow your nose
  • Do smile
  • Do sit up straight
  • Do check your hair before
  • Do wear pants (seriously)
  • Do tidy your background
  • Do check your lighting
  • Do wear clothes you feel confident in


#4: My Eyes! My Ears!

Few things are more annoying than not being able to see or hear someone during a video conference. However, poor audio and video quality issues are still surprisingly common. Our research found that many users are plagued with picture and sound quality control issues frequently, as in on a daily basis.

  • 37% experience picture/video issues
  • 40% experience sound issues
  • 67% experience ongoing background noise issues

Picture This: Perfect Audio and Video

While some elements of sound and picture quality may be unavoidable due to bandwidth issues, there’s absolutely no excuse for either being a problem with the video conferencing unit itself. In a day and age when HD video and audio are no longer expensive optional extras, but standard components of a quality video conferencing system, settling for anything less is like watching analog TVs in a digital world.

Don’t Be a Hater. Give Yourself a Highfive.

Highfive’s high-quality, all-in-one, video conferencing devices enable people to connect with ease. Featuring HD video and audio, and Dolby Voice, Highfive equips you with everything your team needs for an engaging video experience anytime, anywhere. Anyone can use it right out of the box to share slides, collaborate, communicate, and more. Priced at a fraction of the cost of traditional systems, you can easily afford to put a Highfive in every room. Go ahead, give yourself a Highfive.

By Sara Moseley