BigBlueButton vs. Zoom: Which Virtual Classroom Solution is Best for Your Students?

BigBlueButton and Zoom are two popular virtual classroom solutions. But which one is best for your students? Read on to compare pricing, privacy, branding, user analytics, and features to make an informed decision.
20 Mar, 2023

Virtual learning has become a staple in the education industry.

As classrooms move online, teachers and students alike are turning to virtual classroom solutions to facilitate learning.

Two of the most popular options on the market are BigBlueButton and Zoom.

But which one is the better virtual classroom solution for your students?


When it comes to pricing, BigBlueButton has a clear advantage over Zoom.

As an open-source software, BigBlueButton is completely free to use.

This makes it a great option for educational institutions that are operating on a tight budget.

Zoom, on the other hand, offers a range of pricing options that can get quite expensive for larger institutions.

This pricing difference can translate into cost savings for institutions that opt for BigBlueButton.

Zoom Pricing Plans

Zoom offers a range of pricing plans, starting from a basic free plan to more advanced paid plans. Here is an overview of their pricing plans:

  1. Basic (Free): This plan allows for unlimited one-on-one meetings and group meetings of up to 40 minutes for up to 100 participants. It includes video and audio conferencing, screen sharing, virtual backgrounds, and more.
  2. Pro ($14.99/host/month): This plan allows for meetings of up to 24 hours, and includes additional features such as user management, reporting, and recording transcripts.
  3. Business ($19.99/host/month): This plan includes all Pro features, along with more advanced admin controls and customization options.
  4. Enterprise (Custom pricing): This plan includes all Business features, along with more advanced security and compliance features, dedicated customer support, and other advanced capabilities.

It’s important to note that Zoom’s pricing plans are based on a per-host basis, which means that you’ll need to pay for a license for each host that will be running meetings on the platform. Additionally, some features are only available with certain plans, so it’s important to carefully evaluate your needs to choose the right plan for your organization.

For any changes, please do check Zoom’s website.

Data Privacy and Branding

Another important consideration when choosing a virtual classroom solution is data privacy and branding.

In terms of data privacy, BigBlueButton’s open-source model provides an advantage over Zoom.

Because the code is open for anyone to review, there is a higher level of transparency when it comes to data privacy policies.

Additionally, BigBlueButton offers a high degree of customization when it comes to branding, providing opportunities for institutions to promote their own brand.

User Analytics User analytics can be a valuable tool for measuring engagement and assessing learning outcomes in virtual classrooms.

BigBlueButton provides detailed user analytics that allow teachers to see how engaged their students are during virtual classes.

For example, teachers can see how long students spend in breakout rooms, how often they use the whiteboard, and how often they raise their hand to ask a question.

These analytics provide teachers with valuable insights into how students are engaging with the material and can help them adjust their teaching methods accordingly.

Zoom also provides some user analytics, but they are not as detailed as those offered by BigBlueButton.


Finally, the features offered by each virtual classroom solution can make a big difference in the learning experience.

BigBlueButton is specifically designed for education and offers a range of features that are tailored to the needs of teachers and students.

For example, BigBlueButton offers a whiteboard for collaborative note-taking, polling features for gathering student feedback, and breakout rooms for small group discussions.

Zoom, on the other hand, is a more general video conferencing tool that is not specifically designed for education.

While it does offer some features that are useful for virtual classrooms, such as breakout rooms, it may not be as well-suited to the needs of educators.


In the end, the choice between BigBlueButton and Zoom will depend on the specific needs of your institution and your students.

BigBlueButton’s open-source model, detailed user analytics, and tailored features make it a great option for educational institutions that are operating on a tight budget.

On the other hand, Zoom’s ease of use and general flexibility make it a great option for institutions that need a more general video conferencing tool.

Ultimately, the choice between these two virtual classroom solutions will come down to which one is best suited to your specific needs.

As you choose between these two solutions, keep in mind that BigBlueButton provides the necessary tools to teach effectively and assess learning outcomes.

And with an open-source model, BigBlueButton is both budget-friendly and transparent in their data privacy policies.

Regardless of your choice, it’s essential to choose a virtual classroom solution that meets your unique needs and provides the necessary tools

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