Collaborative Video and Audio for up to 25 People in the Cloud Using Blue Jeans!
Over the past few months LTS has been piloting a bridging service from Blue Jeans. A bridge allows multiple audio and video connections to be joined together into a single call. The Blue Jeans service is in the cloud and is unique in that it bridges together a variety of video endpoints, mobile devices, and software titles; whereas more traditional hardware based bridges and services only allowed certain types of connections or required special software. LTS has signed on for this service through the 2013-2014 academic year.
As previously mentioned, a variety of video endpoints, mobile devices, and software titles are supported by Blue Jeans to participate in multipoint calls. Many of these options also allow you to share what is on your screen. Because of this unique interoperability feature, you can use the video chat software you like to use and are comfortable with instead of loading another piece of software on your computer you've never used before, or creating yet another account. A few are listed below:
- Room Systems - like those used in UWEC's Distance Learning classrooms
- Lync - another IM and collaboration tool available to all UWEC users
- Cisco Jabber
- Google Video Chat
- Blue Jeans app for iOS (you can still use Skype or Google Video Chat on your Android device)
Beyond these connection options, users who have a webcam on their computer but don't wish to setup an account for these other software options can install a simple plug-in for most popular browsers: Internet Explorer, FireFox, Google Chrome, and Safari.
For those who simply like to use a phone, they can still use that, too! Blue Jeans provides numbers local to 36 countries around the world to avoid some international charges, as well as toll free calling in Canada and the lower 48 contiguous US states. Click here to see a list of countries available: http://bluejeans.com/numbers
If you're wondering how you might use Blue Jeans with the work you do, here are a few ideas to get you started:
- Remote office hours with groups of your students
- Collaborate with peers around the globe
- Have a panel of experts present to your class wherever they are in the world
(For the best interactive experience for classes we recommend reserving an LTS Distance Learning classroom)
Right now LTS has capacity for 250 user accounts, which will be provided on a first come, first serve basis. An account allows you to schedule meetings with any combination of video and audio participants, with up to 25 connections. The number of meetings you can schedule is unlimited, and users are sent meeting invitations to add to their calendar with instructions on how to join. If you would like to know more about Blue Jeans or wish to request an account, contact LTS Video Services by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling 715-836-5073.
Visit the Blue Jeans website to learn more and watch a short video about it.