Business

The top 4 online whiteboards for effective remote collaboration

By The IFTTT Team

September 20, 2023

  • If you have sat in an online business meeting, or perhaps a virtual classroom, you have likely encountered an online whiteboard. Long gone are the days of having to lug a physical board into the meeting; now, you can collaborate with others virtually and in real-time with the help of online whiteboards.

    In this guide, we will review the best online whiteboards and discuss the features that set them apart from other options. We'll also discuss the reasons why one would choose to use an online whiteboard. To finish, you'll learn about how IFTTT's automation tools are helping thousands of students, teachers, and workers with their online workflows.

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    Rise of Online Whiteboards

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    Would you believe us if we told you that the market for online whiteboards is predicted to break $8 billion in 2030?

    The trend and growing demand for online whiteboards have seen a significant rise in recent years, primarily driven by the shift towards remote work and online education. The transition of many schools, colleges, and universities to online education has been a major factor contributing to this surge.

    Beyond education, corporations are also leveraging online whiteboards to enhance collaboration among employees. Virtual whiteboards allow employees to collaborate in real-time, share multimedia, and graphics. As companies increasingly adopt hybrid work models, online visual collaboration platforms that provide shared workspaces for employees both in and out of the office are gaining popularity.

    Why choose a whiteboard online vs. a real whiteboard?

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    You may be asking, "Why don't I just use a real whiteboard, and share it via a webcam?" Choosing an online whiteboard over a traditional, physical whiteboard comes with numerous benefits, particularly in our increasingly digital and remote-working world. Here are some of the key reasons why online whiteboards are gaining popularity:

    1. Enhanced readability: Online whiteboards are generally easier to read than their physical counterparts. Digital writing tools offer uniformity, clarity, and the ability to zoom in or out for better visibility.

    2. Cost-effectiveness: Shifting to virtual whiteboards can be cheaper and faster. There's no need for physical maintenance or replacement of markers and erasers, reducing long-term costs.

    3. Environmental friendliness: Online whiteboards are better for the environment as they eliminate the need for physical materials that often end up in landfills.

    4. Richer features: Online whiteboards offer features like real-time editing, multimedia attachments, and saving work for future reference. These capabilities extend beyond what a physical whiteboard can provide.

    5. Accessibility: Online whiteboards can be accessed from anywhere, anytime, making them a more flexible option for remote learning, teaching, or collaboration.

    What makes a great online whiteboard?

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    Not all online whiteboards are created equal. The right online whiteboard can transform the way you conduct meetings, brainstorm ideas, or educate students. Here are a few suggestions on what features you should look for:

    1. Unlimited canvas: An unlimited canvas allows users to create and expand their ideas without worrying about running out of space. This is a significant upgrade from physical whiteboards which have size limitations.

    2. Real-time collaboration: A good online whiteboard should allow multiple users to contribute simultaneously. This feature fosters teamwork and improves productivity.

    3. Annotation tools: Teachers or team leaders can use annotation tools to highlight essential points or explain concepts effectively. These tools can include different colored pens, shapes, text boxes, and more.

    4. User-friendly interface: The interface should be intuitive and easy to navigate, even for first-time users. A user-friendly interface can enhance the overall experience.

    Review of the top interactive whiteboards

    1. Limnu

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    (Free Plan, Premium Plans starting at $5 monthly.)

    Limnu is a user-friendly online whiteboard tool designed for real-time collaboration.

    Overview and features

    Easy-to-use interface Unlimited canvas with no boundaries Advanced sketching and collaboration features

    Pros

    • Highly recommended for teaching students remotely
    • Simple and high-quality design

    Cons

    • Some users reported occasional glitches in the user interface

    Best for: Teaching students remotely due to its simplicity and quality.

    2. Ziteboard

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    (Free Plan, Premium Plans starting at $9 monthly)

    Ziteboard is an online whiteboard with real-time collaboration.

    Overview and features

    • Interactive teaching tools
    • Real-time collaboration

    Pros

    • Ideal for interactive teaching sessions

    Cons

    • Lacks advanced features found in other platforms

    Best for: Interactive teaching sessions due to its real-time collaboration feature.

    3. Visme

    (Free Plan, Premium Plans starting at $12.25 monthly)

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    Visme is an online tool designed for creating engaging visual content, including presentations and infographics.

    Overview and features

    • Rich library of templates
    • Ability to create interactive and animated content

    Pros

    • Great for brainstorming content pillars and social media campaigns

    Cons

    • Might be complex for beginners due to the multitude of features

    Best for: Brainstorming content pillars and social media campaigns, thanks to its rich library of templates.

    4. EduCreations

    (Free Plan, Premium Plans starting at $12 monthly)

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    EduCreations is an interactive whiteboard app that allows teachers to create and share lessons.

    Overview and features

    • Ability to record voice-over explanations
    • Easy sharing of lessons with students

    Pros

    • Excels in live streaming and on-the-go online teaching

    Cons

    • Limited free version

    Best for: Live streaming and on-the-go online teaching, due to its easy-to-use lesson creation tools.

    Remember, the best online whiteboard for you will largely depend on your specific needs and the features that are most important to you.

    How to choose the right online whiteboard for your needs

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    Choosing the right online whiteboard for your needs can be a complex task, given the numerous options available. Fortunately, all the options discussed above provide an excellent foundation of essential features that anyone can get a grasp of.

    The first step in choosing the right online whiteboard is to clearly define what you need it for. Do you need it for online teaching? Collaborative work? Brainstorming sessions? The purpose will guide your choice.

    Look at the features each online whiteboard offers. Some common features to consider include real-time collaboration, text and drawing tools, templates, multimedia support, screen sharing, and recording capabilities. Make sure the whiteboard you choose has the features that meet your specific needs.

    Finally, consider that most online whiteboards come in various pricing models. Some offer free versions with limited features, while others are premium. Consider your budget and the value you'll get from the whiteboard before making a decision.

    Online collaboration tools with IFTTT

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    Gone are the days when work meetings and lectures had to be boring, time-consuming, and inefficient. With the help of IFTTT, you can integrate your online collaboration tools with over 800 popular applications and devices.

    If you're looking for an innovative way to take your online collaboration to the next level, IFTTT is definitely worth a try. Whether you're in the classroom or in the boardroom, IFTTT can help make sure all participants are on the same page!

    Read on to hear about our mission and our top picks for workspace and education automations.

    What is IFTTT?

    IFTTT, an acronym for "If This Then That," is our free web-based service and mobile app designed to boost productivity by automating tasks. It works by creating connections between popular apps and services, allowing them to work together seamlessly.

    The basic idea behind IFTTT is to create "applets" or sets of instructions that trigger when certain conditions are met. This can be turning on the lights automatically when you enter your house, for example.

    Founded in 2011, IFTTT has been used by over 25 million individuals to automate both business and home tasks, saving time and increasing efficiency. It's commonly used to connect disparate services and systems, making all products and services work well together in a way that instills user confidence. Best of all, it's free and only takes a couple of minutes to set up.

    Best online collaboration tools with IFTTT

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    When a new Acuity meeting is booked, add the person to my Google contacts

    With this automation, when someone books a new meeting with you via Acuity Scheduling, their contact information will automatically be added to your Google Contacts list.

    Create Trello cards for weekly tasks

    Every week on a certain day, this applet will create a Trello card with the weekly information on it.This makes it easy to keep track of upcoming tasks and stay organized.

    Automatically post new YouTube video to social media

    Whenever you upload a new video to YouTube, this applet will automatically post the link to your Twitter and Facebook accounts.

    These are just some of the ways that IFTTT can help boost your online collaboration efforts. With the right combination of automations, you'll be able to increase efficiency and save time.

    To enable these Applets and millions more (yes, millions), try IFTTT today completely free!

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