Home Pocket Meeting: A $5 WebEx Killer?

Pocket Meeting: A $5 WebEx Killer?

Sharing your screen with someone while chatting on the phone is one of those things that’s much harder than it ought to be. We’ve tried a lot of different tools and none of them makes us very happy. The newest entrant into this field is Pocket Meeting and it’s got some promise.

For a one-time fee of $5, you can get a URL that allows anyone to view your desktop in their browser with a Java Applet, something most people have, so no download should be required. That URL will work for 24 hours. The smoothness of the transmission was excellent in our testing, something that bigger bulkier solutions can rarely deliver on. WebEx, for example, is a huge business – but the user experience is not a lot of fun.

Pocket Meeting is very lightweight but it does what it claims to do and it does it quickly. It’s also easy to switch screens and turn viewers into presenters. That’s really nice. We had about 20 people viewing a screen at one time and it worked well, though the company says the technology is best for serving up to 10 people. You can choose to follow the presenter’s cursor or navigate around on your own.

There’s no chat or voice, and navigation between screens could be clearer. Viewing meetings over a Blackberry Bold is a beta option, though without voice or chat we’re not sure how useful that will be. We’d also really like to see a PayPal option enabled for payment instead of credit card. The service is a product of a Texas design firm called Warb, which isn’t a firm we’re familiar with.

We’ve been using Yuuguu for screensharing with small groups, DimDim for larger groups. Neither of those is as lightweight and smooth as Pocket Meeting, but they are much more full-featured. In most cases, we’d choose smooth over features.

This product has some more development it needs to go through, but there’s promise here and we’d love a quick, smooth solution to this nagging, unfilled need.

If you want to share your screen with someone while talking to them on the phone, this could be a quick, pleasing way to do it.

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