Social Interaction is the key factor for any community, organization or business. Because when you talk to somebody, you can share your thoughts and emotions in a more expressive way in comparison to texting or messaging. One way to socially interact is to call a person. In the olden days, calling was way more expensive than today but now even video calling is one of the most common features of the communities and social networking giants such as Facebook and Instagram.
WordPress is also not far behind from these giants. WordPress has various collections of plugins which will help you to create such types of websites very easily without any coding knowledge. BuddyMeet plugin is one such plugin which will be perfect for you to add a calling/video calling feature to your BuddyPress community. It adds a BuddyMeet Tab in the Group profile page and allows you to send invites to add participants in your call.
BuddyMeet is a well-designed plugin that works on the Jitsi Meet API. Jitsi Meet is an open-source (free) video conferencing service. Moreover, it uses encryption for every call and is developer-friendly. Some of the features of Jitsi Meet are:
- Share your screen, presentation, and more.
- Invite multiple users for a conference call.
- Multiple users can edit a document using Etherpad.
- Integrated Chat while video conferencing.
- Custom Invite URLs for meetings.
Features of BuddyMeet
- Room for every Group Members to meet
- On demand Rooms
- Customization of all supported Jitsi API parameters
- BuddyMeet Shortcode and Parameters
- Enable/Disable Watermark
- Film Strip view for members video conferencing
BuddyMeet plugin is an extension for BuddyPress plugin so you must have BuddyPress (2.5 or later) installed and activated. Also make sure that you have the User Group Component for BuddyPress enabled from wp-admin > Settings > BuddyPress > Components.
In-Depth BuddyMeet Plugin Review
Activating BuddyMeet for Group Meetings
BuddyMeet plugin doesn’t have any settings and options from the back-end but it does allow you to change some of them from the front-end. But Before getting those options you would have to activate BuddyMeet for specific groups.
1. Admins can activate BuddyMeet feature by navigating to a specific Group Profile > Manage > BuddyMeet.
2. Check on Activate for the option “Allow members of this group to enter the same video conference room.” Click Save.
3. There should be a BuddyMeet Tab appearing in the Group Profile from where you can invite members for a meeting or start a meeting with a public group.
Joining the Meeting
After Activating the BuddyMeet feature for everyone, people can join the conference room by navigating to Group Profile > BuddyMeet > Meet the Group. Members will join the default conference room which you will set from the BuddyMeet Settings.
NOTE: Make sure that you have a camera and microphone properly plugged in. Also, you must Allow the site from the browser to give access to use your Microphone and Camera. Otherwise, you won’t be able to use the corresponding feature.
You can access BuddyMeet Settings from Group Profile > Manage > BuddyMeet.
You can specify any custom domain for hosting the service or you can use the default free hosting service by Jitsi API.
You can also set a default room name (or ID) where members can automatically join the conference when they come to Meet Members Tab.
BuddyMeet also allows you to display or hide specific functional buttons for conferencing such as mute everyone, hangup, feedback, etc. You just have to add the component setting name separated by commas and you are done.
Possible Parameters are: ‘microphone’, ‘camera’, ‘closedcaptions’, ‘desktop’, ‘fullscreen’, ‘fodeviceselection’, ‘hangup’, ‘profile’, ‘info’, ‘chat’, ‘recording’, ‘livestreaming’, ‘etherpad’, ‘sharedvideo’, ‘settings’, ‘raisehand’, ‘videoquality’, ‘filmstrip’, ‘invite’, ‘feedback’, ‘stats’, ‘shortcuts’, ’tileview’, ‘videobackgroundblur’, ‘download’, ‘help’, ‘mute-everyone’, ‘e2ee’
You can also allow/disallow particular settings to display while video conferencing.
Possible Parameters are: ‘devices’, ‘language’, ‘moderator’, ‘profile’, ‘calendar’
Width and Height
BuddyMeet also allows you to set the height and width of the video conferencing lightbox. These fields will accept the values in percentage or pixels.
It also allows you to change the background color of your lightbox while the camera is turned off. It accepts the hexadecimal values of colors for this field.
You can set the default language for the video conferencing lightbox.
With BuddyMeet, you can also show a watermark while conferencing or add a link for a custom watermark and show it.
Filmstrip Mode Only
There is also an option to show the people in a filmstrip view (like a list)
Start Audio Only
BuddyMeet also allows you to start every member’s conference with their camera turned OFF until they manually turn their camera ON.
Disable Video Quality Indicator
You can also show/hide the video quality indicator from this option.
BuddyMeet is a group video conferencing plugin. So, it definitely allows you to invite other members of the group while you are video conferencing so that they also can join the on-going conference or private room.
To send invite to members, follow the given steps below:
- Navigate to a Group Profile > BuddyMeet > Meet Members Tab.
- Enter the Room Name and Member’s name or username
- Click Send Invites.
NOTE: You can find your Room Name (or ID) in Group Profile > Manage > BuddyMeet > Under Room field.
After sending the Invites, members will have the notification for the meeting.
Now, you can choose the room from the drop-down and start a private call or video conference with only selected members.
Furthermore, BuddyMeet also provides you a shortcode to embed a video conferencing lightbox anywhere in your page. You just have to paste the following code in your page while Updating/Publishing.
Now, the following are the parameters that can be used to tweak the above mentioned settings through this shortcode.
Suppose, if you want to add a group meeting name rather than showing the room ID like, GroupMeeting in the above image then you would have to use subject parameter as:
[buddymeet room=ROOM_NAME subject=GroupMeeting]
domain: Use custom domain
room: The identifier of the room
subject: Used to display the name/subject of the meeting otherwise will display the room ID
password: Password protect your meeting
show_watermark: Allow/Disallow the watermark to be displayed. It accepts true and false values respectively.
show_brand_watermark: Allow/Disallow the brand watermark to be displayed. It also accepts ture or false.
brand_watermark_link: It is used to fetch the brand watermark if turned on. It accepts the link(string) of the brand watermark.
width: The width of the embedded video
height: The height of the embedded video
start_audio_only: It starts the meeting with only microphone enabled. The cameras will be turned OFF until the member himself turned ON. It accepts true and false values respectively.
film_strip_only: It will start the meeting in the film strip view only. It also accepts true and false arguments.
disable_video_quality_label: Disables the video quality indicator, uses true or false arguments.
user: To display a user. It accepts the member’s username.
avatar: The url of the avatar to display for the user.
settings: The settings to display in the embedded lightbox same as we mentioned above. It accepts all the comma separated values (csv) defined for settings.
toolbar: Used to particularly display the available tools on the video conferencing lightbox. It also accepts all the comma separated values (csv) defined for the toolbar as we mentioned above.
background_color: Used to set the background color of the video conferencing lightbox when the camera is OFF. It accepts the hexadecimal values of the colors.
default_language: Used to set the default language for the video conferencing lightbox.
We hope that we got you covered from each aspect of this plugin. It is so easy to use and the documentation provided with it is very neat even a beginner will have no problem setting it up. BuddyMeet is a very popular and developer-friendly plugin with awesome support from the developers team.
Moreover, If you encounter any problem with this plugin, we encourage you to ask in the comment section below. Thanks for Reading!