If you're looking for a great web conferencing provider, you can't go wrong with either Zoom or Webex, as both offer a stellar experience. However, according to our in-depth, independent research, Zoom comes out on top for its ease of use, new security features, and affordable plans for companies of all sizes.
Cisco Webex isn't without its merits, though. In fact, if you're a larger company that needs a robust feature catalogue and flawless audio and video quality, Webex is probably a better option. However, if you're looking for an intuitive, affordable web conferencing software that won't take up too much time and resources to figure out, Zoom is definitely the way to go.
In this guide, we'll dig a bit deeper to help you understand the specific differences between Zoom and Webex, including features, prices, and security measures. We'll even provide you with a few alternatives to give you a more complete picture of the web conferencing industry. And if you're here just looking for a price quote, simply fill out this quick comparison form to find out in minutes how much web conferencing will cost your business.
The typical lowest starting price. The lowest price available for your business will depend on your needs.
Ease of use
Zoom vs Webex: Comparison
We think Zoom is the best choice for most businesses, but to weigh up which web conferencing solution would work best for your business, take a look at Zoom and Webex's full details below. We've explored every decision factor in depth, and even given you some alternative web conferencing options to both, which may be worth considering if neither seem quite right. We're confident we'll be able to help you find the best web conferencing solution to boost your business communications.
Pricing Plans Compared
The typical lowest starting price, per month, per host.
The typical lowest starting price for tier 2 features, per month, per host.
The typical lowest starting price for tier 3 features, per month, per host.
The typical lowest starting price for top tier features, per month, per host.
$19.99 (minimum 10 hosts)
$19.99 (minimum 100 hosts)
$26.95 (minimum 5 hosts)
When it comes to price, Zoom and Webex can seem pretty similar on the surface. However, the reality is that these two video conferencing providers offer a substantially different approach to how you pay for your software, and hopefully we can help you understand these a little bit better.
Zoom keeps most of its pricing plan costs low, with even the Enterprise plan coming it at a mere $19.99 per month per host – identical to its Business plan. However, that doesn't mean you aren't going to be paying more. Zoom requires users of the Enterprise plan to sign on for at least 100 hosts, which means your costs are going to be notably higher in the higher tiers. Still, this method means you get a lot of bang for your buck, making Zoom the obvious choice when it comes to value.
Cisco Webex, on the other hand, takes a different approach. While the pricing plans go up at each level, they don't require you to have a certain number of hosts with any of the plans except the final one, which requires a mere five hosts (as opposed to Zoom's 100 required hosts with the Enterprise plan and ten with the Business plan). This allows you to be a bit more flexible with larger teams, but doesn't offer much value upside for smaller companies.
Simply put, as we've said before, Zoom is great for value when it comes to medium-sized businesses and below – but you can't beat Webex if you're looking for an enterprise-level solution, if only because that extra cost comes with some serious features.
For more specifics about Zoom and Webex pricing, we've got plan breakdowns below. Or, you can always grab a tailored quote by filling out our comparison form, which has helped thousands of businesses get set up with video conferencing software.
Zoom vs Webex Features
Zoom and Webex are both highly-rated web conferencing providers, and as such, they both offer a wide range of standard features. Screen sharing, whiteboarding, cloud recording, chat features, and mobile functionality can be found on both platforms. However, there are some notable differences between the kinds of advanced features offered by each.
Cisco Webex offers some more comprehensive business features throughout its platform. File transfer, for one, is an incredibly useful tool only found on Webex, as well as notes and polling, even in the free plan. Webex also offers cloud storage included in every plan (except the free one), whereas Zoom requires you to pay extra.
Zoom, on the other hand, offers some fun features of its own that are missing from Webex. Virtual backgrounds and breakout rooms, for example, made Zoom incredibly popular at the start of the pandemic, and Webex is still working on getting those live (although they will be “coming soon”).
Zoom vs Webex Security
As you might have heard, Zoom experienced some serious security problems at the start of the pandemic. However, given the insane uptick in usage, it was to be expected, and they've since remedied the major issues by adding end-to-end encryption for all users – even the unpaid accounts. According to the website, Zoom is also GDPR, CCPA, COPPA, FERPA, and HIPAA compliant.
Cisco Webex never experienced its own massive increase in usage, but even if they had, they've been rock solid on security for years. With strict password entry for users, end-to-end encryption options, and locked personal meeting rooms, you know you'll be secure with Webex. They even offer encrypted cloud recordings on paid plans, so you can be sure no business communications will be compromised.
Zoom vs Webex Call Quality
Call quality can be a bit nebulous from provider to provider, particularly given the impact that internet connection has on any given call. Still, both Zoom and Webex offer notably solid options in this department, particularly compared to free services like Skype or Google Meet.
Zoom specifically notes that every plan they offer allows for up to 720p video quality. The audio quality is quite good, with lots of features designed to reduce background noise and focus on voices. They even offer an in-depth guide on how to improve audio quality for meetings, which can make a big difference.
Webex also boasts great audio and video quality, with HD VoIP technology for audio and up to 720p for video. Additionally, Webex provides MP4 audio recordings, so you can enjoy crystal clear transcription features for future notes.
Zoom vs Webex User Experience
While Zoom and Webex are quite similar in many ways, user experience is where Zoom really pulls away. With arguably the most intuitive interface in the entire industry, Zoom makes it as easy as possible to change formats, add members, break out new meetings, and use the advanced features throughout. Even the password system and seamless integration with G-Suite makes joining and starting meetings very easy.
Webex struggles a bit with ease of use, but it's typically in service of security, so you can't be too mad. The mandatory passwords and dial-in numbers can confusing beginners right off the bat, but hopefully their 24/7 support can help anyone having a tough time.
Zoom vs Webex Call Capacity
If you're a larger business, capacity of meetings is vitally important for bigger discussions. With Zoom, you're getting a maximum of 100 participants with the Basic (free) and Pro plans, which jumps up to 300 participants with the Business plan, and 500 participants with the Enterprise plan. You can get the Enterprise+ plan to up that to 1,000 participants, but that's the absolute limit, which isn't always enough.
Webex, on the other hand, is catered to larger businesses, and there's a much higher ceiling. You're still only getting 100 participants for the first three plans (Free, Starter, Plus), with 200 participants in the Business plan. However, when you get to the Enterprise plan, you can have up to 100,000 participants, but it'll likely cost you a pretty penny compared to the more affordable plans.
Zoom vs Webex Setup
Zoom's excellent user experience translates to a similarly easy setup process. After inputting your birthday and email address and completing a Captcha verification (which admittedly feels a bit outdated), you just have to confirm your email address and you're on your way. You'll have to download the app, but once you do, it's smooth sailing. Setting up meetings is even easier, with simple instructions for inviting members, providing extra security, and activating the virtual backgrounds.
While the advanced features might scare you off, Webex's setup process is pretty easy as well, and quite similar to the process for Zoom. After putting in your name and email address, you'll have to click the confirmation link in your inbox, and download the app to get full functionality. Setting up meetings is a bit more complicated though, with passwords and PINs for each one, which admittedly make you feel secure, but take a bit more time to get you going.
Zoom vs Webex Support
For both Zoom and Webex, you'll only have access to a ticket system when you use the free plan, as you'd expect.
With the paid plans, however, you'll get a few more options. Zoom adds live chat to the Pro plan, and phone support for the Business and Enterprise plans. With Webex, you'll have access to live chat and call-in capabilities with all paid plans, and benefit from a customer support representative as part of the Enterprise plan – which again, will cost you considerably more.
What Is Zoom?
If you haven't heard of Zoom yet, what have you been doing since the beginning of the pandemic? This popular cloud-based video conferencing app became the poster child for connecting with friends and family during quarantine, thanks to its ease of use and intuitive interface. Since its meteoric rise, Zoom has added a lot of features – and most importantly, security measures – that make it one of our top rated providers in the industry today.
That's not all Zoom offers, though. From a business perspective, Zoom provides a wide range of helpful features that can help you keep your company communication on track. From comprehensive scheduling functions to easily managed webinars, Zoom has become a powerhouse for businesses in need of a video conferencing solution. The web conferencing provider also now provides phone service in the form of Zoom Phone, which allows you to combine phone, video chat, and messaging into one, unified app.
Zoom has also addressed many of the security concerns that arose during the pandemic. With more stringent meeting entry measures and robust security measures now in place, you can be sure that you and your company are safe online.
One of the best parts of Zoom is the massive catalogue of third-party integrations available. No need to jump back and forth between apps – with these helpful integrations, you can get it all in one place.
For scheduling and starting meetings, Zoom offers integrations with Salesforce, Skype, Microsoft Outlook, Google Calendar, IBM Workspace, Firefox, HipChat, Appointlet, and Workplace.
For content sharing, Zoom integrates with Google Drive, Microsoft One Drive, Box, Dropbox, and Panopto.
And finally, for marketing and process automation, Zoom integrates with Salesforce Pardot, Marketo, Zapier, and Eloqua.
Zoom offers four different pricing plans for its web conferencing software, Zoom Meetings: Basic, Pro, Business, and Enterprise.
The Basic plan is Zoom's free option, which is mostly geared towards individuals and very small operations with limited needs. Meetings of three or more people are limited to 40 minutes, and can host an absolute max of 100 participants. The support options are very limited on this plan, and you won't have access to reporting or any other advanced features.
The Pro plan will cost you $14.99 per month per license, and it gives you some features you'd need as a small team (of 9 or fewer). You can still only host a max of 100 participants, but all meetings have no time limit (well, they have a 24-hour time limit, but who's going to be in a meeting for that long?) You'll also get access to live chat support options, as well as cloud recording, social media streaming, and reporting functionalities.
The Business plan will cost you $19.99 per month per license, for those wanting ten or more licenses. It's a slightly more robust version of the Pro plan, designed for small to medium sized businesses. This plan allows up to 300 participants in meetings, and provides company branding features, cloud recording transcripts, and managed domains.
Finally, the Enterprise plan, as you might expect, is aimed specifically at larger businesses. It costs the same as the Business plan, at $19.99 per month per license, but starts at no less than 100 licenses, so it's going to cost you considerably more. It offers everything from the Business plan, but allows up to 500 participants. It also includes unlimited cloud storage, and a dedicated customer success manager to help ensure your software is running smoothly.
Who Is Zoom For?
Simply put, Zoom is best for companies focused on ease of use when it comes to video conferencing. If you have beginners in your ranks, or just don't feel like trying to navigate the complicated features of more robust providers, Zoom is the perfect option.
In that vein, Zoom is inherently better for small to medium sized businesses compared to Webex. It offers the basic features you need to get by, as well as some advanced features for bigger meetings, but won't be too confusing for anyone. Plus, it scales a bit more reasonably, so if you do end up needing more features – or more capacity – you can add it pretty easily.
- Easy to use
- Broad functionality
- Free version available
- Poor audio quality
What Is Cisco Webex?
While Cisco Webex might not have the name recognition that Zoom has in the video chat world, it's well known in the business world for being an incredibly popular tool among larger companies. With its impressively robust feature catalogue and thorough security measures, it can handle all the communication needs of large teams without breaking a sweat.
From polling and file sharing to annotation and built-in follow-up meetings, Cisco Webex is just that much more thorough than its competitors. Webex even offers add-ons like international and domestic calling, so you can really build out your communications.
We'll be the first to admit, though, that Cisco Webex is a bit complicated – especially for beginners. Luckily, the company offers 24/7 support to its paid customers, so you can get help when you need it.
Cisco Webex Integrations
To go along with its massive feature catalogue, Cisco Webex provides a number of helpful third party integrations, so that you can keep all your work in one place.
Cisco Webex integrates with Slack, G-Suite, Microsoft Teams, Box, Appspace, Apple, and Salesforce.
Cisco Webex Pricing
Cisco Webex offers five different pricing plans, although specific costs are only available for four of them: Free, Starter, Plus, and Business.
As you might have guessed, the Free plan is the free option, with quite limited features and stringent time restrictions. Meetings are limited to 50 minutes, and a maximum of 100 participants is allowed. You'll have basic features like screen sharing, as well as some advanced features like polling and notes, which is where Webex really shines.
The Starter plan will cost you $13.50 per month per host. With no more than nine hosts and 100 participants allowed, it's truly only good for the smallest of teams, but adds a number of additional features, like MP4 recording, transcription capabilities, and file transfer. This plan also adds some extra support options, including live chat.
The Plus plan will cost you $17.95 per month per host, and it truthfully doesn't add much that the Starter plan doesn't have. It's mostly aimed at providing you with more hosts, offering up to 50 hosts on this plan. It also adds toll dial-in, but otherwise all the features are the same.
The Business plan will cost you $26.95 per month per host. You must have a minimum of five hosts, and can have up to 100 hosts. You'll also up your participant limit to 200 instead of 100, making it a better fit for bigger companies. You'll also get twice as much cloud storage as the cheaper plans, so you can save what you need when you need it.
Webex also offers an Enterprise plan, which requires you to contact their sales department to get specific pricing options. You'll enjoy unlimited hosts and be able to host meetings with up to 100,00 participants, which is the definition of an “enterprise-level” solution.
Who Is Cisco Webex For?
As you might be able to tell from the pricing plans above, Cisco Webex is firmly aimed at larger companies. The Enterprise plan alone points to a focus on massive businesses that need video chat for company-wide communication, rather than individual meetings.
Fortunately, it does allow you to implement some of the more advanced video chat throughout every one of its plans – even the free one – which makes it an attractive option. But again, all those features can get a bit complicated, so make sure your team is equipped to handle the extra load.
- Feature-rich software
- High quality audio and video
- Easy setup
- Occasional bandwidth issues
Video Conferencing Alternatives
Zoom and Cisco Webex obviously aren't the only video conferencing solutions on the market. There are plenty of great alternatives that could be better for your business, depending on what you're looking for.
Check out a few of the alternatives below to get a better idea of what the industry can offer your business today.
GoToMeeting is our absolute top-rated video conferencing provider. The software is a feature-rich, easy to use option that combines the best of both worlds when it comes to walking the line between robust and comprehensive. The audio and video quality are incredibly impressive, and the pricing options are some of the lowest you can find. Sure, it's missing a few advanced features, but as far as value goes, you can't beat GoToMeeting.
Check out our GoToMeeting vs Zoom guide
- Try GoToMeeting free for 14 days with a no-obligation trial
- High quality audio and video
- Very reliable and secure
- Lower cost than competitors
- No free plan
Lifesize is easily in our top five for best web conferencing software, providing some of the highest quality audio and video in the industry. The easy to use interface makes it a breeze for beginners, and the branded hardware is attractive for companies looking to truly bolster their video conferencing setup in-office. Admittedly, the chat function leaves a lot to be desired, but if you're looking for an outright video conferencing solution, Lifesize is worth a look.
Check out our in-depth Lifesize Video Conferencing review
- 1080p video and HD audio
- Interoperability across operating systems, mobile and desktop
- Integrates with Cisco, Skype for Business, Avaya, Polycom, Radvision, and Microsoft Lync
- Unsophisticated chat function
Simply put, the video conferencing market is a crowded one, and there are a lot of options to choose from if these solutions don't pique your interest. Take a look at some of the best web conferencing software in this comprehensive table – and now that you're here, you might as well get a customized quote to see how much it's going to cost you.
The typical lowest starting price. The lowest price available for your business will depend on your needs.
Zoom vs Cisco Webex: Verdict
Our verdict on the Zoom vs Webex debate is that Zoom is definitely better. The ease of use and intuitive interface alone are enough to put it at the front of the pack, and the added security measures and comprehensive pricing plans make it a go-to solution for nearly any sized business.
Still though, if you're an enterprise-level business that foresees the need to use every video conferencing feature under the sun, Cisco Webex might be the way to go. It's robust, if a bit complicated, and will provide you with everything you need to manage a massive organization.
Basically, it depends on your specific needs – and we can help you figure it out a bit more. All you have to do is fill out this handy comparison form to get all the information you need about pricing, giving you the power to make the right decision the first time.
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