Mobile Videoconferencing Apps for Telemedicine

Telemed J E Health. 2016 Jan;22(1):56-62. doi: 10.1089/tmj.2015.0027. Epub 2015 Jul 23.


Introduction: The quality and performance of several videoconferencing applications (apps) tested on iOS (Apple, Cupertino, CA) and Android (Google, Mountain View, CA) mobile platforms using Wi-Fi (802.11), third-generation (3G), and fourth-generation (4G) cellular networks are described.

Materials and methods: The tests were done to determine how well apps perform compared with videoconferencing software installed on computers or with more traditional videoconferencing using dedicated hardware. The rationale for app assessment and the testing methodology are described.

Results: Findings are discussed in relation to operating system platform (iOS or Android) for which the apps were designed and the type of network (Wi-Fi, 3G, or 4G) used. The platform, network, and apps interact, and it is impossible to discuss videoconferencing experienced on mobile devices in relation to one of these factors without referencing the others.

Conclusions: Apps for mobile devices can vary significantly from other videoconferencing software or hardware. App performance increased over the testing period due to improvements in network infrastructure and how apps manage bandwidth.

Keywords: mobile health; technology; telecommunications; telemedicine.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Intramural

MeSH terms

  • Cell Phone*
  • Humans
  • Internet*
  • Mobile Applications*
  • Telecommunications / instrumentation*
  • Telemedicine / instrumentation*
  • Videoconferencing / instrumentation*