Online Whiteboard Guide

How Does An Online Whiteboard Compare To A Physical Whiteboard?

Key Takeaways

  • Online whiteboards provide greater accessibility from any device and location.
  • Enhanced collaboration is possible with remote participants and integration with various platforms.
  • Online platforms boost creativity with a variety of tools and options.
  • Improved productivity with better organization and search features.
  • Online whiteboards offer security features like password protection and data backup.
  • Drawbacks include the need for a stable internet connection and possible compatibility issues.
  • Usability can be a challenge with varying learning curves and interfaces.
  • Online whiteboards might lack engagement due to missing physical and social aspects.


Physical whiteboards let users write, draw, and erase ideas on a huge, public surface. How do you utilize a whiteboard with absentees? How about saving and sharing whiteboard sessions? This is where online whiteboards are useful.

Online whiteboard programs help you to edit digital whiteboards on your computer, tablet, or smartphone. Invite people to your whiteboard to collaborate.

Whiteboards can be exported as images, PDFs, or videos, and even embedded into websites and blogs.

In comparison to a physical whiteboard, using one online has the following benefits:

Access: You can access your online whiteboard from any web-enabled device and any location with an internet connection. You may write freely without worrying about running out of space or markers or accidentally deleting your work.

Collaboration: Remote workers may collaborate, annotate, communicate, and use video calls on your online whiteboard. Assign viewers, editors, and owners roles and permissions. Integrate them with Google Drive, Slack, or Zoom.

Creativity: Shapes, colors, photos, stickers, symbols, layouts, and backdrops may enrich your online whiteboard. Handwriting recognition, voice input, and gesture control can also input ideas. Animations, transitions, and effects may make your online whiteboard more dynamic.

Productivity: Your online whiteboards can be saved and arranged in projects and folders. They can be searched for and filtered according to name, date, or keyword. You can also copy, paste, and clone your online whiteboards or specific sections of them. You also have the option to undo and redo your activities as well.

Security: You can protect your online whiteboards with passwords, encryption and authentication. Control who can access, edit or delete your online whiteboards. Backup and restore them in case of data loss or corruption.

Online whiteboards also have some drawbacks compared to physical whiteboards, such as:

Connection: You need a stable and fast internet connection to use an online whiteboard. If your connection is slow or interrupted, you may experience lagging, freezing or crashing of your virtual whiteboard.

Compatibility: Online whiteboards require a device with a web browser and a reasonable screen size and quality. They may not work on all devices. Browsers, operating systems, and platforms may also be incompatible.

Usability: You may need some time and training to learn how to use an online whiteboard effectively. Some might have a steep learning curve or a complex user interface. You may also face some challenges in using touchscreens, styluses or keyboards to input your ideas on an online whiteboard.

Engagement: You may lose some of the physical and social aspects of using a physical whiteboard when you use an online whiteboard. The gestures, facial expressions, and body language of your collaborators may not be apparent to you.  You may also feel less connected or motivated when you work on an online whiteboard.


Online whiteboards are beneficial in many situations. They improve teamwork, creativity, productivity, and security. They also have connection, compatibility, usability, and engagement issues.  Before picking a whiteboard, consider its pros and cons. Learn more about the benefits of online whiteboards and how they can help your organization.