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Last Updated : Jun 08, 2020 09:04 AM IST | Source: Moneycontrol.com

Time to ditch Zoom and 'Say Namaste' to India's own video-conferencing app?

Say Namaste is yet another video-calling app that competes against the likes of Zoom and Microsoft Teams. Should you switch to Say Namaste as your primary video-calling app? Read more to find out

Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s call to go ‘vocal for local’ coupled with anti-China sentiments has led to the rise in demand and popularity of home-grown apps. Say Namaste is one such app that claims to be ‘India’s very own video-conferencing app’, pitching itself to be an alternative to popular video-calling apps like Zoom.

What is Say Namaste?

Say Namaste is a video-conference app developed by a Mumbai-based company that lets users create or join an existing meeting. The app can be used to have one-to-one conversations or even a group video-call up to 50 participants at a time.

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Not just video, the Say Namaste app also lets users make audio voice calls, which can be handy in times of a patchy network. 

Like Zoom and many other video-calling apps, Say Namaste supports screen sharing via a desktop/laptop. There is an option to chat via text with participants simultaneously during a call.

Say Namaste also supports file sharing during a video-call. This means that users can share audio/ video files, images, PDFs, presentations during a video call.

How does Say Namaste work?

There are three possible ways to use Say Namaste video conferencing. The mobile app can be downloaded from the Apple App Store on iOS and Google Play Store on Android. Users can also visit the Say Namaste website to conduct a video-call. 

The website works with limited browsers like Google Chrome and does not support Apple Safari. You do not need to create an account to initiate or join a video call.

To create a meeting, the user can go to the website or on the app and hit ‘create new meeting’. You will be then asked to enter your name to begin the meeting, following which you can share the meeting ID and the code with other participants.

To join a meeting, you need to enter your display name, the meeting ID and the code.

How was it? 

We tried to make video-calls from the website but failed due to lag. The website says it could be due to ‘lakhs of Indians’ using Say Namaste.

On iOS, the app is ranked eighth in the productivity category of the Apple App Store. We tried conducting a video call via the Say Namaste iOS app. While creating a new meeting, the app freezed twice after we entered the display name and also refused to go back to the home screen. The third time, a possible bug blocked the Submit button as the keyboard could not be swiped down to begin the meeting.

We had a similar experience on the Android app the first time. After creating a meeting on the Say Namaste Android app, the video screen lagged despite having a stable Wi-Fi connection.

Should you use the app as a Zoom alternative?

While it is good to go vocal for local, the Say Namaste app is not quite there yet. The video-calling service fails to offer a seamless user experience during video calls and one may even find it tough to create meetings on the mobile app.

Also Read: Facebook Messenger Rooms vs Zoom vs Microsoft Teams vs Google Meet

There could also be concerns revolving around the app’s security and there is no mention of end-to-end encryption either. The website’s privacy policy reads, “We maintain appropriate administrative, technical, and physical safeguards to protect your personal information from accidental, unlawful, or unauthorised destruction, loss, alteration, access, disclosure, or use and other unlawful forms of processing. You should keep your user credentials and password confidential and secure so that your information is protected. We work hard to protect your data, but the Internet is not 100% secure. We encourage you to use caution online. This includes not sharing or reusing your passwords and not using the Services with unknown persons.”

Until Say Namaste fixes the current issues, it is best you stick to other video-conferencing apps like Zoom, Google Duo, Google Meet, or even WhatsApp video.
First Published on Jun 8, 2020 09:04 am
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