Free Software for Secure Encrypted P2P Video Calls: Ring

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Ring is a free video chat software available for multiple platforms, like Windows, Linux, Mac OSX, and Android. One of the main features of Ring that makes it stand apart from other video conferencing software is that it is highly secure and confidential. Ring maintains user’s privacy by encrypting information flowing over network, which can only be decrypted at client side. It uses AES-128 encryption algorithm.

You don’t have to create any account for using it. Ring automatically generates your account and provide you a RingID. This ID will be used for adding new contacts.

Ring facilitates P2P video, audio, and text chatting at the same time. In this article, we will see how to make unlimited video and audio calls using Ring, and its features.

RING

How to make Secure Encrypted P2P Video Calls using Ring:

Step 1: Download Ring by the link provided at the end of this article. After you install this free P2P video chat software, it will auto generate your RingID. Generated RingID is used for your identification and adding new contacts. You can assign yourself an alias through account settings. Assigning alias makes it easy for your Ring contacts to easily identify you. By default, your PC’s username will be your alias. Remember you can not use alias for adding new contacts. To assign an alias:

  • Click on Settings menu.
  • Switch to Account tab and type an alias that you want to assign.

You can also assign a display picture to your Ring account.

  • Click on settings menu.
  • Switch to General tab and click on Avatar to set your display picture. display

How to add your friends on Ring:

  • Click on Share button to share your ID either by e-mail or QR code. Select the option Share by email to share RingID with your email contacts directly. mail
    After sharing your RingID, ask your friend to copy and paste that ID in Search Contacts textbox and press video call button to initiate a video call to you. After your video call session is complete, you will be automatically added to their contact list.add
  •  You can easily share your RingID by QR code also. Click on Share by QR code to generate QR code of your RingID. Now you can ask your friends to scan this QR code to get you added in their contact list.QR

You can add any number of contacts on RingYou can view your contact list at the leftmost part of the interface. You can’t search any user by their alias if you have not added them into your contact list before.

Click on any contact to view your conversation. Double click on any contact to initiate a video call with them.

Various options that appear during video call:

  • Pause: It will put your video call on hold.
  • Send message: It will send an instant message in the ongoing video call.
  • Add people: This option is supposed to provide a conference call feature, wherein you can conference other ring users in your P2P call. However, this didn’t work for me.
  • Transfer Call: Click on this button to transfer your call to anyone else in your contact list.
  • Mute Mic: This option will mute your mic.
  • Mute Video: Select this option to stop transmitting your video information.

Video Conferencing using Ring:

Ring proclaims on its official website that it can be used for video conferencing as well. Unfortunately, this feature did not worked work well for me during testing. Anyway, you can try  it out on your own to see if this feature works for you or not. I followed this procedure for trying video conferencing feature:

After initiating a video call, click on Add people button. Clicking on it will pop up contact list. Double click on any contact to add them into your conversation. Unfortunately this feature did not work for me.

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Other features of Ring:

  • Send text messages to other contacts during video calls with a contact.
  • Ring will automatically record your video conversations if you want so. You can click on Always Record to enable this feature. You can also set a custom location where you want to save your recorded videos.autoR
  • Adjust quality of your video conversation.

Verdict:

I found many performance and technical issues while trying Video conferencing feature of Ring. Another issue that I found is, it did not notify when new messages were received. This means that you have to regularly check for new messages if you have kept Ring minimized. But being in beta version, it conducted the video calls very well. Ring offers a new level of privacy by not storing any of its user’s details on any centralized server, thus maintaining anonymity of its users. Ring creates its own network by following point to point communication model. All information flowing over this network is encrypted and can only be decrypted at client’s side, thus maintaining confidentiality of its users. You can try this software if you want to communicate in a secure environment.

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Works With: Windows, Linux, Android, Mac OSX
Free/Paid: Free