EnKoo Adds Web Conferencing

By Lauren Simonds | Posted September 19, 2005

Best known for remote access appliances for small-and-medium businesses, EnKoo today announced its adding new function to its current form. The new feature, called Meeting@MyPC, is a software-based Web conferencing tool available on EnKoo's family of remote-access appliances, the EnKoo 1000, 2000 and 3000.

Ajit Deora, the EnKoo's CEO, said that Meeting@MyPC is the first of many productivity applications the company plans for its remote access appliances. "We're creating a remote productivity appliance that provides small businesses with the exact tools they need to increase productivity and gain a competitive edge," he said. "Customers can pick and choose which features they want to have on their specific appliance."

Calling All Conferences
EnKoo designed Meeting@MyPC to let small businesses conduct meetings, presentations, trainings or demos online. "We wanted to provide a simple, affordable, easy-to-use solution that's designed for small businesses," said Deora. He added that until now, small companies have had to choose between high-priced monthly subscription plans or "minimalist solutions."

In the entry-level version, Meeting@MyPC supports up to five concurrent solution lets one-to-five organizers host Web meetings with one-to-five remote participants (for a total of five people connected at any one time). At the high end, the program supports up to 200 concurrent connections. Other features and capabilities include:

  • One-time fee — no recurring monthly fees or subscriptions
  • Hold multiple meetings simultaneously at no additional cost
  • Schedule meetings in advance or host them on the fly
  • Host unlimited meetings for an unlimited duration
  • Host can assign control of the host's PC to any meeting attendee
  • Meeting attendees can view host's PC Desktop
  • Optional passwords for participants provide additional level of security
  • Supports Active Directory authentication
  • Centrally manage all accounts from the Admin Console

The company designed the tool to be simple, and Deora said that start up involves logging in to the program, clicking on the Meeting button and inviting attendees. A one-screen panel lets you select the invitee and automatically generate an e-mail for each person. The e-mail contains a link that lets the invited members join the meeting.

What Meeting @MyPC doesn't provide is audio support. You have to use your own phone system to make the calls. Deora said this was a conscious decision. "We wanted to provide an affordable solution, and there are phone alternatives available to small businesses that are much cheaper than EnKoo could provide," he said. He also pointed out that other Web conferencing solutions charge a fee for audio service, and that those fees can add up in a hurry.

Comparison Shopping
So how much will Web conferencing from EnKoo cost you? Pricing starts at $1,495 for solutions that support five concurrent connections (such as the EnKoo-RA-1000). The price goes up from there depending on the number of  connections you need. For example, the EnKoo-RA-3000, which supports 25 — 200 concurrent attendees, starts at $4,995 for 25 connections. For pricing specific to your needs, contact EnKoo.

Deora compared EnKoo's pricing with subscription-based companies WebEx Express and Citrix GoToMeeting (pricing based on plans that support five concurrent attendees):

  • WebEx Express: $4,500 per year
  • Citrix GoToMeeting: $3,185 per year
  • EnKoo: $1,495 one-time fee

EnKoo's current customers can purchase Meeting@MyPC and download it directly to the appliance. The price for the software upgrade runs from $995 for five concurrent connections up to $9,995 for 200 concurrent connections. EnKoo also offers a 30-day free trial.

Lauren Simonds is the managing editor of SmallBusinessComputing.com

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