You may recall that some time ago Milton Chen, CEO of VSee made a guest appearance on a VUC call. I was impressed by the service, which at the time supported Mac and Windows. Recently VSee announced the availability of VSee For iPad.
Normally, products announcements for the iPad don’t even register on my radar. However, as I recently purchased a third generation iPad with the Retina display I thought this a fine opportunity to revisit VSee.
Not long after their VUC appearance I spent some time trying to get it to work with video sources other than a webcam. In particular, I tried to use an older Black Magic Design Decklink SDI capture card in place of the more typical webcam. While I have my own reasons for this, the basic idea is that I’d like to use a better quality video source that a consumer webcam.
VSee showed some flexibility in allowing the use of alternative sources. They rely upon the Windows Direct Show framework which lead me to believe that it might not be too difficult to achieve my goal using the VSee & Decklink pairing.
Unfortunately, I was wrong. The Decklink card had to be initialized by the application. Vsee didn’t do that, nor did it seem it possible to easily hack a way around it.
Nonetheless, I remain impressed by VSee. The app allows free video calls, including multi-way video. It features good compression and military grade encryption. It also has all the conveniences you might expect, like drag & drop file exchange and simple screen sharing.
There’s a lot to like in the free service. Further, the paid versions don’t seem unduly expensive. I could see an SMB, like my employer, adopting VSee as private, yet hardware non-specific video conference solution. The fact that they now support the iPad has to be another step in the right direction, bringing mobility to a significant segment of users.