What Is Web Sharing?

Web sharing (also known as "screen sharing" and "desktop sharing") is a software function that allows a stream of data to be shared across the Internet to one or more devices. While the term can refer to the exchange of any kind of data, usually it refers to shared screen and audio data. In this kind of application, one user will opt to broadcast their screen layout to one or more team participants. Web sharing is a powerful collaborative tool because it allows remote team members to see exactly what the sender is doing while they explain their process.


How Web Sharing Works


First, let's look at how web sharing works from a productivity standpoint. The feature is used during a videoconference, and it can be enabled from within your videoconferencing software. Immediately on activating the feature, the participant's video will switch from their webcam feed to a precise image of their desktop (or optionally a software window). Everyone in the meeting will see the participant's screen as though it were theirs, right down to where the mouse pointer and cursor are situated.

The best way to understand how web sharing technology works at a technical level is to compare this functionality to that of a standard video conference. When you start a video conference, your webcam begins to capture video data through its lens. This data is then digitized, converted to small encoded packets of data, and then sent to other meeting participants via the Internet.

Web sharing is exactly the same conceptually, except that instead of a physical camera capturing what it sees in front of it, a "virtual camera" will capture whatever you do on your screen. Essentially your screen activity is captured in exactly the same way as a camera captures an image of your face.

Video is data intensive. A lot of information needs to be quickly captured and sent when you're working with millions of pixels. To get around this problem, your shared screen (and for that matter, any kind of streaming video you may use during a teleconference) will be compressed before it's sent. Compression is a process whereby a computer algorithm removes as much information from the image as possible without compromising image quality beyond acceptable limits. By sending a compressed video feed, web shared data can travel efficiently even across relatively low bandwidth connections, thus ensuring a smooth experience for every meeting participant.


Uses for Web Sharing


  • Training: People tend to learn visually. A shared screen therefore makes the instructive processes significantly easier for both the audience and the presenter.
  • Collaboration: Web sharing offers an efficient way for teams to share creative and intellectual insights on a workflow or project.
  • Product demonstrations: For sales teams selling digital products, web sharing is a valuable tool for demonstrating product features to a remote audience.


Benefits & Advantages of Web Sharing


Web sharing comes into its own among companies who routinely need to share screen-based and verbal data with one another or with clients. Using this feature you can instantly show what you’re working on, an approach that permits the presenter to be less descriptive and more analytical. 

Web sharing enhances productivity, helps your people learn, and offers a powerful way to show each other what you’re doing.

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