Web meeting with multi user screen share
October 16, 2018 8:57 AM   Subscribe

I need to find a free web meeting website or app, Windows compatible, which will allow guests as well as the host to screen share. Prefer as simple as possible on guest side (so it would be better if they did not have to download an app ahead of time, but if necessary we can deal with it).
posted by Kriesa to Computers & Internet (8 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
I also found out that Skype for Business is included in Office365, which I have through work, if that has this capability.
posted by Kriesa at 9:02 AM on October 16, 2018

We use Join.me pretty successfully. The guest does need to download a plug-in but it's very quick and pretty straightfoward to join a meeting otherwise. Screenshare handovers are also pretty easy.
posted by like_neon at 9:12 AM on October 16, 2018 [1 favorite]

Join.me and Zoom both work well. Zoom is the more user-friendly of the two. You need to download a client for Zoom.

I don't think there is any way to get around the hurdle of having to download a client, install a plugin or just deal with confounding tech (Skype for Business).

The only thing you can do is give meeting participants step-by-step instructions for what to do prior to your meeting or webinar or whatever. And then literally build in ten minutes at the start for helping some of the more hapless participants troubleshoot and get them online.

Typical problems I've encountered is that someone has not installed the client (Zoom) or plugin (Join.me). Or maybe their OS is way way way out of date (need to restart). Or they're having internet troubles. Or they've upgraded to Windows 10 which does not have the drivers that run their OEM webcam...

The main problem is that there are some people who understand the mechanics of trying to get these video conferencing solutions to work, and others who may not have the time, the inclination or motivation to figure it out, and no matter what those people will need to be accommodated if you want your meeting to work.
posted by JamesBay at 10:10 AM on October 16, 2018 [1 favorite]

I'm an evangelical for Zoom.us. Significantly better than every other conferencing solution I've tried (most of them). It's focused on web cams, but also does screen sharing well. The host will need to check a settings box to let guests share their screens, but it's super simple and reliable.

Zoom's client is also very thin--I've had panelists using locked-down government laptops use it with no issues.
posted by matrixclown at 10:12 AM on October 16, 2018 [1 favorite]

OP is asking for free - which Zoom is not. Google Hangouts is free and should work, although it does require all participants to have a Google account.
posted by COD at 10:25 AM on October 16, 2018 [1 favorite]

Zoom's free version has unlimited/untimed 1-1 meetings, 40 minute time limit for meetings of 3-100 people (with nags when your time is running low).
posted by matrixclown at 11:12 AM on October 16, 2018 [1 favorite]

I use Google Hangouts or its big sister, Google Meet for this. Anyone can screen share, the plugin is quick to download, and it is pretty goof-proof as long as everyone has a gmail address. Lots of places use Gmail as their organization's email client, too, and it also works with those (e.g. my graduate school used gmail as the client for their .edu addresses, and I was able to log into Hangouts with that)
posted by assenav at 12:25 PM on October 16, 2018 [1 favorite]

OP is asking for free - which Zoom is not. Google Hangouts is free and should work,

Zoom is free for the first 40 minutes. The consumer version of Hangouts is not 100 percent reliable. I mean, I can use it, and would love to use it more, but about 50% of the time the person I'm trying to connect with can't figure out how to use it.
posted by JamesBay at 2:48 PM on October 16, 2018

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