Over the last couple of months we have shared some blog posts and handy tips for how to get the most out of your VoIP calls. These articles have been in light of the official release of Mikogo Version 5 with its voice conferencing features.
If you’ve been recently getting more acquainted with Version 5 and our voice conferencing features, you may have noticed that in addition to the VoIP feature we also provide a list of telephone numbers for multiple countries. We refer to these as the Mikogo teleconferencing numbers. And they can save you a fortune on your phone bill. Good-bye international conference call costs!
Teleconferencing vs. VoIP
Just a quick sum up on the differences here before we dive into this article… VoIP refers to calls that take place over the Web through your computer and Internet connection. It’s built into the software. To participate in a VoIP call you will need working speakers and a microphone on your computer.
Don’t have a working microphone or speakers? Or perhaps one of your participants doesn’t? Then this is where teleconferencing comes into play. This is when you host and participate in a conference call via your standard phone. It could be your desk phone or your cell phone.
Firing Up a Teleconference with Your Online Meeting
Now for how to use the Mikogo teleconferencing numbers:
1. Select Conference Mode
After you have started a Mikogo session, open the Voice Conferencing drawer, select “Telephone”, and click “Start Voice Conference”.
2. Select Your Country
The Voice Conferencing drawer will expand and you’ll see a drop-down menu for countries. Pick your country and a local dial-in number will appear. Call this number.
- TIP: to get the teleconference numbers before you start a session, you’ll find them all listed on our support pages.
3. Enter the Access Code/Session ID
You’ll then be asked to enter your conference access code. This is the exact same as the session ID. But you’ll see it’s provided as the “Access Code” just below the dial-in number so participants joining the conference call know what to do.
- TIP: if you’re the session organizer, enter the access code followed by the star key. This will give you access to further conference controls. More details below…
If you’re the first caller, you’ll be placed on hold until your first participant joins the teleconference. Once they join, the two of you will be connected in a call. As the other participants join, they will be added to your conference call.
And that’s it! You’re all in a conference call.
You can add as many participants to your conference call as you have in the meeting. In other words, if you use Mikogo Professional, all 25 of your participants can join in on the conference call.
These local numbers will save a lot of money for you and your participants. A local number for each participant means nobody is paying for a long-distance call. If someone in the USA is having a conference call with some people in Germany, all parties can call in on their local numbers.
Conference Call Feature Keys
As I wrote above, the session organizer can enable further conference controls. Using the following feature keys on your phone keypad, you can do the following:
- *2 – Count Participants: Gives you a headcount on all connected participants in the call.
- *5 – Switch Listening Mode: By default, everyone can speak in the conference call. But as the session organizer you can change that:
Press *5 once to mute all participants. (But they can unmute themselves by pressing *6)
Press *5 a second time to force-mute all participants without them being able to unmute themselves.
Press *5 again to return to open conversation mode where everyone can talk.
- *6 – Caller-Controlled Mute: Any participant can press *6 to mute or unmute their line.
- *7 – Lock Conference: Press *7 and no further participants can enter the conference call. You can reopen the call by pressing this again.
- *8 – Tone Control: you will by default hear entry and exit tones during the call:
Press *8 once to turn these tones off.
Press *8 a second time to set entry tone off, exit tone on.
Press *8 a third time to set entry tone on, exit tone off.
Press *8 a fourth time to return to the default mode with all tones on.
There is no additional cost for using the Mikogo teleconferencing service. All numbers are local numbers for each country. The only expense you may pay is the cost of the call charged by your phone service provider. However for many people these days who have unlimited local calls as part of their phone service package, the cost will be zero.