What is screen share?

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Video conferencing allows you and your team to jump into a virtual meeting where you can see each other’s faces. It’s like you’re all in the same room! But that only works fine until someone tries to describe something that’s very specific or detailed from their screen to everyone.
Suddenly, you’re miles apart again.
Of course, that’s not the case anymore. That’s thanks to a nifty little feature called screen share.
A shared screen featuring a global map

Getting your team on the same page – literally.

What is screen sharing?

Screen sharing is the technology that allows you to share content on your screen in real-time to one or more separate devices. This lets you show whatever you’re looking at on your screen directly to the people you are talking to without having to send the actual files.

Think about it: even if you do send the files and your coworkers open them, you’ll still be looking at the file individually. There’s no telling what details the other participants are actually looking at. With screen share, the person who’s presenting information can direct everyone in the meeting to see what they want everyone to see.

There are a number of stand-alone screen-sharing software available in the market, but this feature is included free in most video conferencing solutions, including RingCentral Video.

Making online meetings more collaborative

What are the benefits of screen sharing?

While video calls and video conferencing make communications from long distances more personal, screen sharing helps make it more collaborative. It makes it easy to get everyone on the same page because everybody is literally looking at the same thing.

As a result, your team can enjoy these advantages:

  • No need to share files. While file-sharing is certainly useful, it’s not always the way to go. With screen sharing, you don’t have to wait for everyone to receive the file, download it, and finally open it. Let’s not even mention the fact that you must always remind everyone which part of the document you’re on in the middle of the discussion (there will always be that one person who just can’t follow the verbal discussion). During a meeting, you want everyone to be looking at the same content at the same time. You get this through screen sharing.

  • You’re not just talking, you’re also showing. Being articulate when it comes to describing something can be very helpful. But if you can skip the descriptions and just showing the information directly is way more effective. Your team doesn’t have to imagine what you’re talking about—they can see it for themselves. This helps you facilitate your meetings better because you’re supporting your words with visuals.
A team looking at the same shared screen

Not just for online team meetings

When do you use screen sharing?

This feature is heavily connected to online meetings. After all, it’s the setting where it’s most widely used. The host or a participant typically shares their screen for a presentation.

However, this feature can also be used in other scenarios like:

Professionals around the world can join a webinar

Webinars

This is video conferencing on a bigger scale. You can host an online event and use the screen-sharing feature for presentations and as visual support to the speaker or presenter.

A group of students ready for online learning through video conference with screen sharing

Online training

It also makes it possible for educators to share their knowledge in a more practical way. Aside from providing files like videos and documents, trainers and teachers can use screen sharing for live lectures.

Remote support

Instead of going back and forth describing the technical issues, you can share what you are seeing on the screen with the IT personnel on the other end of the line. This is especially helpful if your team doesn’t have desktop sharing that allows IT staff to take control of your computer.

A remote employee talking to IT support via video meeting

Frequently asked questions about screen-sharing in RingCentral Video

How do you screen-share?

Sharing your screen during video conference calls is pretty easy. With RingCentral Video, you can share your screen from your desktop or laptop (Windows or Mac OS) by following these steps:

The screen-share button in the RingCentral App for desktop interface
  • Once yo’re in the meeting, press the “Share Screen” button in the horizontal interface near the bottom of your screen.
  • A pop-up screen will come up and you can now choose what you want to share. You can share everything on your screen, an application, or your browser tab. Once you’ve made your choice, just hit “Share.”
  • Click “Stop Sharing” above the screen to stop sharing.

If you are using the RingCentral App on an Android device or iOS devices like iPhones and iPads, the interface may look a bit different. The process, however, is virtually the same.

The screen-share button in the RingCentral App for mobile interface
  • Once in the meeting, just tap on the “Share” button at the bottom of the screen.
  • A confirmation window will pop up, and you just need to tap “Start Now.”
  • Tap the “Share” button again to stop sharing.

Can meeting participants share their screen?

That will depend on the host of the meeting. With RingCentral Video, the conference host can control the sharing access of participants. Depending on your needs, you can go to settings and set it to “only the host and moderators can share screen.” You can change this setting anytime during the meeting.

Is screen-sharing safe?

The security of screen-sharing is dependent on the security measures employed by the provider itself. Good news is, RingCentral has industry-leading security— it institutes extensive measures at every level, including data privacy and protection, transmission encryption, and compliance with global industry standards.

And you don’t even have to take RingCentral’s word for it. These security controls are externally verified by trusted institutions. You can take their word instead:

AICPA SOC 2 Logo
AICPA SOC 3 Logo
HIPAA Logo
HiTrust Logo
McAfee logo

Can you record a shared screen?

Yes. Most video conferencing solutions include both audio and screen recording. It records everything that’s going on in the online meeting including whatever’s on the computer screen of the host or the person that pressed “Record.” 

What is RingCentral Video?

RingCentral Video is an integrated audio and video conferencing, screen-sharing, and messaging platform that’s included in select RingCentral plans.

RingCentral is all about letting you work from anywhere and on any device and its video conference feature is a part of that. But more than that, RingCentral aims to take online meetings to another level through:

  • HD audio and video. Enjoy high-quality voice and video in every virtual meeting. Feel like you’re talking to someone in the same room.
  • Analytics and reporting. Get real-time insights on how your organization is using the service. You can monitor service quality, track adoption and usage, and view system performance at a glance.
  • No downloads. When you are talking to your team, you all know you’re using the same platform. But what if you want to meet with someone outside your organization? Most providers require non-subscribers to download the app or software to be able to join. With RingCentral Video, however, guests can join the meeting by clicking the link and participating from their browsers.
  • Instant device switching. Imagine joining a meeting on your mobile phone and then finding that your battery is running low. Well, you can just switch devices without missing a beat. RingCentral lets you move the call between your mobile device or desktop app with one tap. Nobody will even notice.
Meeting participant uses RingCentral app to switch from desktop to mobile during an online meeting
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