TokBox Offers Free Live Video Talk Functionality

A new plugin called TokBox, from a San Francisco company of the same name and funded by YouTube co-founder Jawed Karim, allows users to talk with each other over live video. A component with a "Push to Talk" button can be added to a social network profile, blog, or personal Webpage. A visitor clicks the button to connect to the host in real time using live video and audio.

The service is free and requires no chat client, just a computer with a camera and an Internet link. When a user signs up, the service generates a link that can be forwarded to friends. Host users control who can and can't see them.

TokBox also recently released a Firefox plug-in that allows Facebook users to do free video conferencing. When the plug-in is installed, the host user can hold multiple video conversations, each in a separate window.

Finally, a new public video feed from the company allows users to post video mail to friends or to all users of TokBox.

About the Author

Dian Schaffhauser is a senior contributing editor for 1105 Media's education publications THE Journal and Campus Technology. She can be reached at dian@dischaffhauser.com or on Twitter @schaffhauser.

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