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Glance.net is a lightweight, fast and reliable web conferencing/desktop sharing application. It is easy to quickly share your desktop with up to 100 guests in order to carry out sales demonstrations or remote training. It lacks a few of the features that some of the bigger named products include, but this is what makes it so lightweight and ideal for on the fly conferences.
The area Glance excels in is letting you share your desktop quickly and efficiently. A session typically starts very quickly, even more so than some of the bigger name products. Once a guest has joined your session they can see everything that happens on your screen or they can allow you to control their desktop at the click of a button. Up to 100 guests can participate in one session as standard meaning that a standard subscription to Glance allows for about four times more participants than some of its rivals.
To join your session guests visit a unique URL given to you on subscription and enter a unique key for that particular session. No installation is required on the part of the guest and it is also easy to include a button on your website which takes them straight to a Glance session. Once in a meeting though, there is not much else guests can do except watch a presentation on your screen or give you control of their desktop. While this may be enough for most people, it lacks the text chat or whiteboarding features that some other applications provide.
You can host sessions from any Microsoft Windows (Window8/Windows7/Vista/XP) PC or Apple Mac (Mac OS X 10.4.11 "Tiger" or newer). Glance is only needed by the person that hosts the session. Using an internet browser such as Chrome, Firefox, Internet Explorer, Safari or Opera, all guests can instantly join the host's Glance sessions from any Windows, Mac or Linux computer, or any mobile device, without installing any other viewing software.
While Glance may lack a few of these extra features, it performs very well on both Windows and Mac systems - unlike some of its competitors. We found it easy to take control of Windows from a Mac or vice versa without any problems. This is obviously an essential feature if you work in an organisation which regularly needs to bring Mac and PC users together in one meeting.
For communication during a meeting guests can dial into the free teleconferencing facility provided as part of a subscription. Although the service itself is free guests will likely incur a charge for dialing a standard long distance number, but this is standard amongst most web conferencing applications. Unfortunately Glance does not include VOIP support like a few of its competitors do, but the teleconferencing facility does provide a better quality and more reliable line than VOIP usually does.
One final thing that Glance lacks is any form of encryption on the communication between host and guests. Meetings are protected because guests must know the unique key code, but in theory it would be possible for someone to intercept the traffic between participants. This lack of security may not be an issue for most people, but it would be unwise to discuss confidential issues in a Glance session. On the plus side Glance has a very useful privacy feature whereby you can broadcast from your primary monitor and keep your secondary monitor hidden in order to prepare material or take notes. This is an extremely useful feature in practice and keeps a presentation running more smoothly than having to constantly hide your main screen.
Glance.net offers a decent service but it’s a little more costly than you can find elsewhere, and it is lacking a few of the features we’d expect. If you’re looking for security then this certainly isn’t a service for you, otherwise it’s one worth considering.
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