Review: WebEx vs. GoToMeeting vs. MyTrueCloud
Cisco WebEx Meetings, Citrix GoToMeeting, and MyTrueCloud My Web Conferences compete on features, quality, client support, and cost
Cisco WebEx Meetings
The doyen of the teleconferencing world, WebEx is now a total solution for preconference planning, conferencing, and postconference follow-up and action. In addition to supporting Windows, Mac, and Linux, WebEx has mobile apps for iPhone, iPad, Android, and BlackBerry, and it integrates with most Office and Office-like applications. (Microsoft Office plug-ins are provided by WebEx; Google Apps connectors are produced by a third party.)
One notable differentiator for WebEx is its ability to stream media from its servers to all participants. As a video producer, I often need to show media to remote audiences, and WebEx allows me to do that without serious lag or awkward workarounds. The downside of this capability is that WebEx converts uploaded video to a compressed but proprietary format. Similarly, WebEx allows recording of all conferences, but employs a proprietary format that requires using a media converter or special viewer application.
While the proprietary file formats are annoying, I wouldn't eliminate WebEx from consideration because of them. There are reasonably good technical reasons for those formats, primarily high compression, and the benefits outweigh the inconvenience.
I like the WebEx interface, and I like the meeting space concept. While you can certainly do meeting planning, scheduling, and document exchange via email, putting all of that in one place is a great convenience and helps to organize projects.
In general, I have had good experiences with the quality of WebEx audio and video, with a few small exceptions. Given that I was using a Wi-Fi connection at my end when I had audio dropouts, the problems could have had everything to do with my network and nothing to do with WebEx.
WebEx is a must-evaluate option for companies in the market for Web conferencing. Signing up for free gives you a 14-day trial of WebEx Premium 25, followed by a perpetual license to the free basic service. You do need to install plug-ins to use WebEx, which will require administrator permission, but WebEx even supports Linux.
Cisco WebEx Meetings supports social interaction and file sharing before, during, and after a Web meeting. This helps to centralize everything you need to know for a meeting in one place.