By Riley Ehlermann '21
During this virtual learning period, students and faculty have been forced to resume classes online over two video chatting services: Microsoft Teams and Zoom. These two applications come with their own sets of troubles and advantages, and today I will be giving my opinion on which one I prefer— even if you do not care.
Teams… Oh, Teams. For starters, the organization of the app is spectacular. All your classes are lined up and waiting for you to select them. Then, in each class, a myriad of options including a call log, a chat, a calendar, and then the option to start or schedule a meeting. Also, when a meeting is occurring, Teams allows you to view who is already on the call, so you do not have to be the first one there. Teams’ easy-to-use system makes it a stress-free experience each time I use it. A downside, however, is how I am not notified when a meeting is occurring unless I have the app open. For someone like myself, if I am not repeatedly notified of a place I need to be I will most likely forget. You also cannot view every person on the call at the same time… so sad. Altogether, Teams is very structurally satisfying for me and I have never had to worry about finding where my class is meeting.
Zoom, on the other hand, is a different story. Before I discuss, I just want to explain my love for Zoom. It allows you to see almost everyone on the call which makes it similar to a classroom. I also appreciate the plainness of Zoom. The fact that you are sent a link, you click the link, join the call, end the call, and that's it. No extra features, no complications, just a link and a call. Due to all of that, I want to say Zoom is superior, but I cannot lie. It strikes me with a pain of stress. Every. Single. Time. I can never find the Zoom link to anything because I must look in three other locations. Then, I never know if I will be joining alone or the whole class is awaiting me. Finally, and the worst of all, is the fear that rushes through me when I am left in the waiting room. The panic I have when I text every person in that class to notify the teacher I am waiting, anxious about the math lesson I might miss and never understand after that. Zoom has many great features, but the anxiety it gives me is uncalled for.
So, when it comes down to the final decision, Microsoft Teams is the only valid winner. Yes, it lacks in the notification and viewing area, but it makes up for it in the organization department and I cannot overlook that. Zoom, I was rooting for you. We were all rooting for you.