I love my dear friend Patricia, but she is definitely not the most technology savvy person I know. She recently had an issue with her new laptop and a friend of hers offered to help walk her through how to fix her problem. He promised it would be easy. On a peaceful Sunday night he called to talk Patricia through the “simple” problem, resulting in a not so pretty fight with phrases said such as “that simply cannot be what it says on the screen, read it again” and “this is easy, how is it possible you aren’t getting this?” The conversation ending in an abrupt hang-up and a few days later an email to Patricia yet again stating how easy the problem was and listing the 27 steps to solve it. Ummm, not easy, and sadly, the friendship did not make it.
This tragic scenario could have been avoided if Patricia and her friend knew about Join.Me, a website that allows users to share their desktop over the Internet with up to 250 people. In this case, sharing it with one would have been enough. Many of us have probably seen or used paid versions of desktop sharing or a webinar software, but the beauty of Join.Me is that it is free and beyond simple to use.
To have a Join.Me session, you just go to Join.Me and one person chooses to “share” their desktop. This can be done on either a PC or Mac, and the user will have to launch a quick application – it took only 3 seconds even on Qatar’s slowish Internet. Once this application is launched, a code is provided in the application which you then share with people you want to view your desktop. Once people receive that code, they simply go to Join.Me, enter it in the “join” box and within a few seconds they can see you desktop through their web browser. That’s it – conference started!
Join.Me has a built in chat feature and also allows the person sharing their desktop to turn over control to a remotely connected user. Yes, Patricia’s friend could have done all that “easy” work himself. You can start and stop the live broadcast simply by clicking one button as well. Join.Me also allows you to transfer files to meeting participants and has a free conference call service, however that only works in the U.S. If you want an international line through Join.Me, you will need to upgrade to premium. The premium version also includes the ability to have multiple presenters and a scheduling function.
Join.Me is definitely the simplest desktop sharing application I have used and the free version really has just about everything I have ever needed – and it requires no registration. If you are looking to do a remote presentation, need to conduct a training, want to show off something cool or need to help a friend with a tech issue, Join.Me is a great option. It’s also works on most smartphones and the iPad. Join.Me doesn’t allow recording of sessions yet, but minus that, I loved everything about it. Check it out and let me know what you think!