Citrix GoToMeeting review

GoToMeeting is an online meeting service from industry giant Citrix, but this isn't necessarily a guarantee of quality as Julian Prokaza finds out in our review.

Attendees also have the option to call a standard national rate telephone number to connect to a teleconferencing session for the duration of the meeting, or switch to VoIP for free voice communication. In both cases, the meeting organiser can selectively mute callers, but attendees can always chat freely via typed messages, both to the entire room' or to particular individuals. It's also worth pointing out that this teleconferencing feature can be used without other attendees even being aware of the online meeting side they just need the GoToMeeting telephone number and meeting ID code. The meeting organiser still has complete audio control over telephone-only attendees via the GoToMeeting application window and organisations can even use their own telephone access number rather than the one provided.

For more collaborative meetings, GoToMeeting offers a number of options. First, the organiser can become a host' and share their screen in view-only mode with other attendees, revealing either their whole Desktop or just a specific application window. The host can also doodle on their screen, as can selected attendees, but writing remotely is rather slow and somewhat erratic, with scribbles randomly disappearing in all or part for no obvious reason.

Once in host mode, the organiser can then also cede mouse and keyboard control for the current view mode to one or all attendees. This needs to be used with obvious care granting full read/write access in full Desktop mode poses obvious security risks, but so does letting someone open just a single Explorer window from afar. GoToMeeting also lets the organiser hand over hosting duties to any of the other attendees too, which means they then get the same local screen sharing and control options the original organiser can always resume host duties at any time, though.

So what's our verdict?

Verdict

GoToMeeting is a capable online meeting and teleconferencing tool, but the interface is a little confusing with too many quirks for us to give an unconditional recommendation. More to the point, the entry-level service is rather pricey compared to the competition, which means the free Join.me still stands as our online meeting service of choice.

SYSTEM REQUIREMENTS Operating system: Windows 2000, XP, Vista, 7, Server 2003; Mac OS X v10.4.11 or newer Web browser: Modern web browser with JavaScript and Java enabled Broadband internet connection

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