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May 12, 2006

Reality Check: Vyew

If most venture capitalists weren’t liars, we’d tell you that if we had the opportunity to fund Google, we would have passed. Seriously, who would have thought the world needed another search engine in 1995?

Fast forward to 2006. Does the world need another web conferencing product? Maybe. Check out Vyew.

Vyew is a free browser-based conferencing and “always-on” collaboration platform that provides instant visual communication without the need for client downloads or installations.

Vyew’s multimedia workspace enables real-time shared viewing of presentations, files, photos, and one’s desktop. Included are tools for whiteboarding, annotating, text chatting, and phone conferencing.  

With Vyew’s “always-on” configuration, users can leave, permit others to enter and make revisions, and return–knowing that all content and annotations will remain intact.  
Vyew has a growing set of plug-ins, such as Yahoo maps, Google search, diagram tools, notepad, games, and photo slideshows.
Key Features:
- Free
- Instant meeting: No client to download
- “Always-on” collaborative sessions
- Share and whiteboard PowerPoint, Word, Excel, and JPG, etc. files.
- Desktop sharing with one-click screen capture
- Remote storage
- Download photos from Yahoo!, Kodak, and Flickr to create multimedia slideshows

Please vote about Vyew.

Please rank this posting.


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Interesting that their comparison leaves out Adobe Breeze, which is probably the closest to them since it is also based on Flash Player. (However, unlike Vyew, Breeze doesn't also require Java). Breeze is also very extensible... any Flash developer can write extensions to add functionality like custom whiteboarding or whatever else they can imagine.

"If most venture capitalists weren’t liars, we’d tell you that if we had the opportunity to fund Google, we would have passed."

Do you mean "would not" have passed?


No, I think I got it logically right.


I think this interesting, because it really isn’t ‘web conferencing’. Other conferencing tools (WebEx, GotoMeeting) basically ‘stream your screen’. Vyew is more of a web collaboration environment. Its whiteboard is well executed IMHO better than Webex, Groupboard or MSN. I have tested this with a Tablet PC and a Macintosh. The only real problem with the Mac was the screen shot function didn’t work. You can load images from Flickr, Yahoo, URL’s. You can load powerpoint slides, and step through them (it renders em as pictures.) If you look under ‘new page/load extras’ there is an interactive diagramming tool, and a game. I couldn’t get the game to work quite right but the idea of ‘plug-in’ collaborative flash objects is pretty interesting. Interactive Yahoo mapping was fun, but I find myself wanting an interactive Google map instead.

As a GotoMeeting user, I think that Vyew fills a gap that gtm doesn’t address. It will be interesting to see how this develops. It is probably the cleverest use of flash I have seen in a while.

this works well for a quick demo and it's much faster to get started than something like premier conferencing; it's perfect for times when you don't need the more sophisticated tools. I think I would use something like this quite a bit to share something quickly, and use it more frequently than the aforementioned product.

I like the idea of being able to rate blog posts, but I find the current widget you are using to be aesthetically unpleasing.

"If most venture capitalists weren’t liars, we’d tell you that if we had the opportunity to fund Google, we would have passed. Seriously, who would have thought the world needed another search engine in 1995?"

I think the question every investor has to ask is "is there enough suck in the status quo for someone else to come in?" In 95 and web searching, yeah.

in 2006 for Web Conferencing, oh hell yes.

I know this may seem odd, but I like that they're up front about mac support. "We want it to work, but we're not Mac experts" and then inviting help. No dancing around things.

When a new company is willing to admit in a direct way that it has problems and wants help with them, it makes me feel good about dealing with them.

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