Free services are helping businesses mitigate the effects of the outbreak!
Companies all over the world have ordered employees to work from home in response to the introduction of widespread quarantine and social distancing measures.
Top of the list of concerns for many businesses is whether employees are properly equipped to go virtual-only. The lack of appropriate software could prove a significant stumbling block for workers asked to suddenly abandon their office workstations.
Thankfully, technology vendors of all shapes and sizes have come to the rescue, with many offering free access to premium services for a limited time. Here’s a rundown of the best free products and services to help your business navigate the ongoing pandemic:
Microsoft is offering a six-month free trial of Microsoft Teams’ premium tier and will also let users schedule video calls and conferences. Meanwhile, all UK NHS staff will receive free access to the Teams collaboration platform as well.
Cisco has added additional features to its free Webex service and is also offering free 90-day business licenses to firms affected by coronavirus. Free accounts will now allow users to host meetings with up to 100 participants for an unlimited amount of time.
PowWowNow has extended the free trial of its services from 14 to 60 days to help employees work from home and stay productive during the pandemic. The company’s suite of technology products includes web meetings, video and conference calling.
Zoho Remotely is a new suite of apps designed to help remote workers stay productive, free until July 1. The suite contains 11 apps in total, including solutions for online meetings, training sessions, storage, project management and word processing.
3CX is giving away its business communications software to all businesses for a period of three whole years – and for unlimited users. The solution allows users to make and receive calls, see the status of colleagues, chat, schedule conferences and access the corporate phone book.
Having receiving a raft of inbound enquiries, Klaxoon has made its collaboration suite free for 90 days to all businesses. Video conference participants are able to vote, react and brainstorm in real time, on any device.
Pronto for Business:
Communications platform Pronto has made its collaboration solution, Pronto for Business, free for a limited (but unspecified) time. The service connects employees seamlessly via chat and video to ensure they are equipped to work from any location.
8×8 Video Meetings:
Cloud communications platform 8×8 has expanded the global capabilities of its free video meetings solution. The firm has done away with restrictions on the number of meetings and meeting duration, and added calendar plugins for Google and Outlook, and dial-in numbers for more than 55 countries.
Ring VPN has offered up its service to all UK users for 90 days, to help those either quarantined or working from home to preserve their online privacy.
Final Cut Pro X & Logic Pro X:
Apple has extended the free trial of its professional video editing software Final Cut Pro X from 30 to 90 days for all users. The company has also made its audio editing software Logic Pro X available for free for the first time, also for 90 days.
Multimedia firm Avid is offering free 90-day licenses for its audio and video editing software to ensure team members are equipped to work remotely. The offer is available to existing commercial customers and students at Avid-based learning institutions.
Appian Covid-19 Response Management:
Appian has published a free COVID-19 Response Management application for enterprises and government agencies. The app, which can be fully configured within two hours, allows organizations to track the health of employees, including their location, travel history and coronavirus incident details.
Baramundi Management Suite:
baramundi Software is offering free use of its unified endpoint management software to IT administrators for four months. The package includes remote consultation, set-up, configuration and continuing support from a barramundi expert.
SEOTesting.com is allowing businesses to use its service for free until July (to be extended should the situation continue). Companies can use the tool to run SEO tests on their website and monitor the effects of changes on Google ranking.