Fuze Meeting for iPad

Fuze Meeting is an average online meeting solution. But it runs on iPad, and there the performance isn’t half bad.

You can host and participate in a meeting, which is a neat thing. Fuze Meeting offers you to enter a virtual room rather than share your desktop. So you can upload and look at files.

Fuze Meeting intro screen on the iPad

Fuze Meeting intro screen on the iPad

You can do a lot from your iPad. You can schedule and initiate meetings, you can invite someone while a meeting is running, and you can chat with the other attendees.

What is really neat is the chance to leave the Fuze app for a while if you need to. Returning to an already running meeting is no problem.

Find out more about Fuze Meeting for iPad on the vendor’s website.

Online meetings and smart phones – iPhone currently leads the field in the race to compatibility

A couple of week ago we stated that we weren’t all that convinced of the mix of online meetings and smart phones. Our main objection was the small size of the devices’ displays. Nevertheless, we have to keep an open mind and objectively evaluate the current solutions. So we checked out the compatibility of all the web conferencing solutions on our list with iPhone / iPod touch, Blackberry, and Android.

A lot of vendors have already released smart-phone-friendly versions of their software. Astonishingly, the leaders as far as compatibility is concerned are the solutions below the top 5! Among the top 5 only WebEx and RHUB can be used on an iPhone. RHUB as a browser based solution, WebEx with its own app.

The combination of “runs on iPhone and Blackberry” is most common and currently Intercall Unified Meeting, IBM Lotus Live Meeting, Fuze Meeting, PGi Netspoke, and AT&T Connect are able to deliver.

Next to compatibility of online meeting solutions with smart phones we checked the compatibility with Apple’s iPad. Taken together, 30 per cent of our tested solutions offer web conferencing on either smart phone or iPad, which is ok for starters. Developers are working on the issue around the clock and we will keep you updated on the latest news.

We will now take our iPad and scrutinize the performance of single solutions. Oh, and naturally we inserted the info on which tool is compatible with which device into our overall ranking.

Yugma stays out! We just can’t take them back into our ranking.

In June 2009 we removed the online meeting solution Yugma from our ranking. Yugma had made it into the top 3. We made our decision to remove Yugma after we were notified of a planned company shut-down. Hearing that, we assumed that Yugma’s online meeting service would not be available on an ongoing basis.

We’ve been monitoring this issue and noticed that the Yugma website has remained up and running the whole time. Also, Yugma’s solutions are still available for tests or purchase in nearly unchanged format. So, were we wrong in our estimation 1 ½ years ago?

Take a look at Yugma.com and you will notice that the company’s site seems to have frozen since the announced shut-down: There are no new press releases, no support news, and only very few recent forum entries. A promo banner for “Yugma AV Beta” has been on the site for nine months now, under the category “coming soon”.

So we asked a former Yugma executive to fill us in on the situation. Here’s what he told us:

They are operating out of India largely, with a "storefront" in Minneapolis.

About the service ... you know that for Unified Conferencing type of services ... the biggest requirement is "Availability" and "Reliability". If you cannot guarantee uptime then no way will you be able to trust your mission-critical meetings on any service.

If a company does not have investments and runs out of India how can you guarantee international quality service? It's a chicken and egg problem. Which came first? How can you make new investments in technology, and invest in customer acquisition?

After a quick test this is what we currently can say about the online meeting services: Yugma’s solutions are still available and can be used. The server-infrastructure seems to remain intact. One of the newer forum entries points out that there are some problems when running the software on Windows Vista and Windows 7, so there definitely are still active users out there. However, we will not include Yugma in our ranking again: The reliability of the service remains too shaky for us to recommend it – with a clear conscience – as a web meeting software.

Putting all these objections aside for a moment: If we actually evaluated Yugma according to our testing criteria the solution would make its way directly back into the top 10 – this time as number 8, though.

drop.io has been purchased by Facebook and will discontinue its services

drop-io is a file-sharing service that will now be closing its doors due to acquisition by Facebook. All users of this service are recommended to download data stored on the service’s platform until December 15, since it will be deleted afterwards. Here are some more details.

The software had ranked low in our comparison of online meeting tools and we have now removed it from the overview entirely.