Web conferencing vs. virtual classroom solutions

This morning, a Canadian visitor of our test portal made us aware of a gap in our evaluation of online meeting solutions:

I noticed online training in your Applications sidebar, but you evaluated the WebEx Meeting Centre. WebEx Training Centre provides enhanced functionality specifically designed for training. Have you evaluated this product against competitors in that field?

Since webconferencing-test.com is a non-profit initiative we only have limited time to spend on reviewing different solutions. Unfortunately this means that we are not able to add a new branch to our website by testing special-purpose online meeting solutions for classroom-like online trainings. We’ve got our hands full with keeping our ranking up-to-date and comprehensive as is.

But of course we do have something to say on the topic:

The biggest challenge to evaluating web conferencing solutions tailored to classroom, training, and online exam requirements is the intransparency of this niche market. This market includes vendors like WebEx (Training Centre) and Citrix Online with GoToTraining, who extended their underlying web conferencing technology to serve online training purposes. Others like Saba and Elluminate provide a blended web conferencing / eLearning solution – and there are dozens of vendors delivering solutions dedicated solely to virtual classroom scenarios, like Learning Management Systems (LMS), Skytap, eLecta and GC Learning Services.

Web conferencing solutions to be evaluated soon

More and more providers are releasing or upgrading their software in the hopes of grabbing a share of the growing online meeting market. To provide a broad overview of the web conferencing solutions available we are constantly checking out the new tools out there. At the moment, tools that are being tested include drop.io, Conference IQ, iLinc for Meeting, InstantPresenter, Saba Centra Live for eMeetings and Mikogo.