Business Mobility

Speek eases conference calling hassles for Windows Phone

Speek
Speek for Windows Phone 8

If that headline sounds familiar, it's because I wrote a similar one back in January about Speek for iOS. It's an app that brings conference-call creation and management to your smartphone.

At that time, I'm sure at least some folks were hoping for a Windows Phone version. Hope no more, because Speek is now available for Windows Phone 8.

Like its iOS predecessor, Speek for Windows Phone lets you set up conference calls right on your handset, using a highly visual motif. Each person is represented by their thumbnail photo from your address list, this giving you the chance to "see" everyone on the call.

Because I don't have a Windows Phone handset on which to test-drive the app, I'm making a few assumptions about it relative to the iOS version. The latter, for example, lets you set up an account right on the phone. This consists in part of a custom username that doubles as your unique URL, like Speek.com/WidgetCo.

From there you can set up call right away, inviting contacts via text or e-mail, or create a future call (here known as an event).

Whether the call happens now or later, participants either click the provided link or respond to the SMS invite. Speek dials their number, and presto, the person who answers is immediately on the call. At your end, you merely tap Start A Call, wait for your phone to ring, then return to the app.

Once the call is live, you can see the aforementioned thumbnail view of who's connected and even who's talking. You can also add callers on the fly, though it's not clear if the Windows Phone version lets you share images from your photo library. But it does let you make comments, mute individual talkers, and even remove participants if the need arises.

When the call is over, Speek immediately emails you a call history outlining who was on the call, how long it lasted, and any materials shared.

My complaint with the iOS version, which no doubt holds true here as well, was that those you invite via text have to manually enter (or at least copy and paste) the Speek phone number and your room name (like the aforementioned "WidgetCo").

Mostly, however, Speek gives Windows Phone users a pretty easy way to create or join conference calls. And it's free, at least for now.

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