Difference Between Face-to-Face Communication and Online Communication

Edited by Diffzy | Updated on: April 30, 2023


Difference Between Face-to-Face Communication and Online Communication

Why read @ Diffzy

Our articles are well-researched

We make unbiased comparisons

Our content is free to access

We are a one-stop platform for finding differences and comparisons

We compare similar terms in both tabular forms as well as in points


This is the century where Google meet-ups, Zoom scientific sittings, Netflix movie times, and Tinder dates are common. Despite their origin during the beneficial pandemic days, it is still considered a better option to come together with friends and family at any time with a single click. The power is just at your fingertips. Thanks to all the technology that made these possible. You don’t need prior dates, reservations, or appointments. You need not check availability, transport facilities, and others. You can be in any part of the world and connect with another person, even if they are at the other extreme of the globe. It is still possible if all basic amenities are in good working order.

There are many apps available offering online calls. However, apps working in offline mode are also becoming popular these days. Some of those listed can be Google Meet, Zoom Cloud, and Webex Meetings which can accommodate large numbers of people together. And for the same reason, it was used by students in schools and colleges. Other apps include WhatsApp, Viber, Facebook Messenger, FaceTime, etc.

Face-to-Face communication vs. Online Communication 

Online calls done with help of social media or network calling apps can be a time, money saver with the busy schedules of people nowadays. It does not require prior appointments or dates and is easy to access anytime, and anywhere, within a click. Whereas, personal meetings require proper time and effort and may not be always possible. This is the major difference between the two.

Difference Between Face-to-Face communication and Online Communication in Tabular Form.

Parameters Online calls Face-to-Face Communication 
Mode of interaction More passive involvement of the participants. More active participation helps in developing their behavior, and approach to one another.
Access Much easier and faster possible even in busy schedules. Just on a click Must be able to transport to one another location.
Costs Maybe more costly for setting up the basic requirements  Include transportation costs and no others.
Requirements Normal network connectivity, smartphones, primary know-how about how to use it. Requires only time and availability of the people for a meet up. May not be possible for people following busy schedules.
Reach Anyone anywhere across the globe can be reached if with proper requirements   Often connects to known persons of family, friends, and others we wish to.
Interaction  Very less social interaction  People learn how to approach one another and this improves how people treat one another.
Safety The unlimited access may also result in some breaches of personal information as we also have the possibility to connect with unknown people. The limited access and remains between friends, family and others.

What is face-to-face communication?

This can be coming together for a special occasion, celebration, dates, client meetings, interviews, and others. The main difference is that here, there is a greater role for the communicators in making their communication effective. It demands time, effort, and proper knowledge of the language, as well as the primary know-how to greet, approach, and spend time with new people who show up for you. These occasions, which can bring them closer, influence their personality and behavior, even those of others in a community.

Such talks demand more warmth, expression, and emotions rather than just the information intended. There is greater power in your words when they are accompanied by gestures and action. Even if it is only for a short time, a genuine, gentle, and kind conversation with a mentally ill person can significantly improve his situation. This is the power of communication when verbal and non-verbal acts come together. However, it is necessary for the person to travel to and from each other in order to be present for a genuine conversation. It may give you a hectic schedule, but it is surely worth the time and effort. It builds trust, belief, and support among one another. It strengthens your bond with your family or friend’s circle.

There is no prerequisite to planning a personal meet-up except for time and effort. For the same reason, this can be done even without electricity or internet connections. A down server cannot stop you from talking to your loved one, and so, this proves to be more of an independent option.

Hence, this option might be sought alternatively when you are out of battery, Down Server, Cut-off electricity, or failure in network connectivity the next time. Also, remember that efforts matter more in any relation keeping it strong and lasting years. 

What is online communication?

Actually, it consists of more passive communication. However, it can turn into active communication due to high technological advancement and possibilities these days. For example, to share your emotions rather than just a text message, you can use Emojis, stickers, or GIF stickers (that include short animated or part of film content) that can be used to describe different situations.

There are times when close relatives are separated because they are looking for work, pursuing an education, or simply living in different homes. This includes soldiers living far away from their homes, students or fathers who have moved abroad to complete a course or job they are assigned, etc.

Also, it makes it possible for people to see and understand the conditions and lives of other people instead of just phone calls. This can help in providing proper mental support to our friends or family when they are in need without actually reaching them. Also, help them with various decisions and also take part in their happiness or the highs and lows of their lives.

A student who wishes to do graduation, course, or research can work directly under an expert who can guide him easily despite the actual distance between their locations. It also lets you connect at any desirable time of a day

Face-time meetings also make it easier for the employees to come together daily to discuss their performance, profit margins, targets, and plans for the current week. This can be done several times a week and may not be as hectic as daily Monday-morning meetings.

This also lets the employees who especially work from home freedom to also do their chores at home, especially if it's a wife or a mother.

This is an advantage for the staff as their physical presence is not required. Instead, it is their relaxed, fresh, and present state of mind that is required for any job to be completed with all of their hearts.

Even most celebrities offer meet-ups and video calls to fans based on their prior limited requests, which may have been considered nearly impossible in the early centuries.

Main differences between face-to-face communication and online communication in points


No transportation costs are required, also relieving the time, money, and effort it takes to reach the point of destination from your location.

However, people actually require time to spend with one another personally, despite the busy lives they lead nowadays.


Instead, you reach out to one another instantly, just when you think about them, with a click. Even if you have a five-minute break, this can prove enough for effective communication.

Because the reach is greater than you can imagine, you can connect with anyone you want, including people you might think are impossible to meet in person. You can talk to experts, connect with researchers across the globe, and many more.

This includes connecting with your favorite celebrities, role models, research experts, groomers, teachers across the world. It can also help people to expand their friends' circle, also finding people with similar thoughts to come together r to work together for a charity cause.


Calls made online include only verbal and facial expressions in the mode of communication. Whereas, personal meet-ups can be more dynamic, involving body language, confidence, outlook, presentation, etc. You cannot actually perceive a person's emotions at the time of communication.

Personal discussions and talk can reveal how much they are emotionally concerned about each other. The slightest touch or hug can be a great relief for one another. It can also solve any conflicts and find solutions more abruptly compared to the discussions that can happen while sitting at different ends of the world.

Making new friends 

Initial conversations between strangers can be much easier and smoother over the phone, as seen in dating apps. This creates freedom as they need not worry about their imperfections, which could be hidden by the appealing filters. However, we must accept that everyone is beautiful the way they are, despite any filters they may have created.

Social Impact

However, online calls could never replace the social interaction that is already decreasing these days. Social interaction helps you to improve as an individual by influencing your personality, character, approach, and behavior towards others as a community. This can improve how a person views a community and contribute to its betterment, as well as give you a realization about how to live in harmony and peace with one another.


Online calls have a set of requirements without which it may not be possible to make them. They include functioning electricity, network connections, a smartphone, installed apps that can be used for this, and the primary knowledge about how to use them.

In a personal meet-up, only time and availability of each other are required. This could never be impossible if all electricity and network connections were cut off. This means that in this way, we are independent and not relying on other sources, as in online calls.


While online, it is highly likely that we get easily distracted from the conversation by the many other app notifications and updates that appear simultaneously on-screen. Despite the effort we make, we can still be diverted by our thoughts.

In a real conversation, two people maintain steady eye contact, which can convey a message more dynamically and with greater attention. This also creates a greater bond between the conversers. This lets them understand that they are also cared for and that they are not alone.


When large numbers of people can connect simultaneously from different parts of the world, it surely comes along with possible disadvantages. Mostly, hacking, tracking, and other breach complications. It was found that over a hundred Zoom cloud meetings were hacked and sold on the dark web during the pandemic crisis, when the entire population depended on social media to reach one another, strictly following the principles of social distancing. Despite the known and presented facts about possible external intrusions into personal privacy while using social media, its use has not been reduced or limited.


Both modes of communication have their own pros and cons as described above in the article. It is recommended that people try to involve both modes of communication when reaching their close ones in their daily life as it can be easier to use online mode and at the same time offline meet-up preserve human needs of touch, attention, warmth, and presence.

Online calls can be a time saver and help you to spend your time wisely while still getting maximum rest and breaks.

People can find more time to do other things, including following their passion, studying a simultaneous course, learning new languages, art forms, conducting research, or just taking breaks from busy schedules.

It is relieving to know that experts are high time working on enabling such apps with more privacy and security and preventing external breaches. We can only hope that this will soon change people's perceptions of the many benefits that social media can provide to the community.

Whatever advances can be made in such online communication, they will never be able to replace physical communication, which is much warmer in terms of attire, emotions, appreciation, or perhaps the touch, hug, attention, or care they show while conversing. And this is just what human beings need the most, especially these days following the pandemic, when social distancing has taken on a stake and people, despite the crowded world, feel alone and easily move into depression.

It is ironic that even with billions of people living in the world, you can still be lonely.

So, communication, regardless of the medium used, must ensure the formation of strong bonds and attachments, which is the ultimate goal. Every person must know how to approach, transmit information, and support one another despite all the barriers that can come in between.



Cite this article

Use the citation below to add this article to your bibliography:



MLA Style Citation

"Difference Between Face-to-Face Communication and Online Communication." Diffzy.com, 2024. Tue. 18 Jun. 2024. <https://www.diffzy.com/article/difference-between-face-to-face-communication-and-online-communication-23>.

Edited by

Share this article