Over the last few weeks of working at VSee, I’ve been realizing that VSee is more than just a videoconferencing tool. It’s a video collaboration tool. Of course, it can do the things that videoconferencing does, but on a much more dynamic and work-friendly scale. It’s the difference between a big elephant and a nimble mouse.
Videoconferencing is great for things like talking, interviewing, and formal staff meetings because it’s rich in human information, and it makes you feel like person, not just a disembodied machine. However, the equipment tends to be too cumbersome and tedious for spur of the moment use.
“Well, what about Skype?” you say. It’s cheap, and it’s quick and easy to connect to others. True, but as I noted in my “Ode To Skype” a few Fridays ago. Its sharing features just aren’t all that powerful or convenient, and if you haven’t got great bandwidth you’d better squash your group calling hopes. As John commented about Skype:Couldn’t write, couldn’t highlight Tried to share, but ’twas a bear
If you want a strong set of sharing tools, it would be better to use WebEx or GoToMeeting, which are especially good for prepared meetings and big presentations. Aside from the all-important ability to share PPT slides and to record sessions, they have the basic necessities of desktop sharing, annotating and drawing, whiteboard, and file transfer. They also have other fun and useful features worth exploring. Personally, I still find it rather lugubrious for doing anything unplanned. I mean if I just want some quick feedback on a document, I’d just as soon share it as a Google Doc and make a phone call versus going through the hassle of creating and and starting a GoToMeeting and sending out invites to everyone. Besides, I’m not going to keep it open on my desktop all day.
VSee In Action
And that’s what makes VSee special: It allows you to meet and share with any number of people on the fly. I was talking with Yuen-lin Tan, our head of engineering last week, and he gave me a beautiful example of what he calls VSee’s collaborative “agility.” He had a situation last year where VSee was customizing some features for a client. When the client’s people were testing it out, not too unexpectedly, they found a bug. The cool part is that Yuen-lin was able to contact them and fix the problem within a matter of 30 minutes–we’re talking a problem that requires the cooperation of 2 different companies across several different departments. It went something like this:
(3 min.) Problem report: Client’s VP VSees Yuen-lin to discuss the bug, but of course, Yuen-lin needs more info.
(6 min.) Problem clarification: With Yuen-lin still there, the VP VSees the tester who reported the bug. Right there on the spot, the tester shares his desktop and demonstrates exactly what was done to get the error.
(5 min.) Problem identification and consultation: Now Yuen-lin has an inkling about what the problem may be, but wants to consult another VSee engineer Erik. (The tester after having provided the needed information has easily left VSee and gone back to work.) Yuen-lin then gets Erik in VSee and explains that he thinks it may be a missing file. Erik agrees with Yuen-lin’s assessment, and as it turns out, the missing file happens to be in Erik’s keeping.
(6 min.) Implement solution: The missing file needs to be put onto the client’s server, so the VP (present throughout all this) gets his IT guy on VSee. Erik passes the file over with VSee’s easy drag-and-drop feature, and the IT guy immediately puts the file into place right then and there.
(5 min.) Fix verification: The VP then gets the original tester back into VSee and has the tester do his thing again. It works fine.
Voilà! Problem solved in about 30 minutes. With VSee, people can come and go as needed, and they can easily share files and screen information as needed.
Now that’s dynamic!