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Vyew is a low cost option for hosting small webinars with a variety of optional extras. However, hosting can be more complex than it should be and webcam users may experience problems...
If you’re in the market for a basic webinar service but you’ve a really tight budget then Vyew might be worth considering. Uncommonly (and quite generously) it offers a free service which allows 10 real-time participants to enter a virtual seminar room, with a limit of 20 seats in total. Unfortunately if you want to have any more guests, even just 1 more, you cannot. Instead you are required to upgrade to Vyew Plus or Vyew Professional. Upgrading won’t cost the earth though, and it’s actually one of the lowest prices you’ll find for a half decent webinar service. The participant limit can be expanded using Plus or Professional, at $1 per participant (a fairly standard rate). So, price wise things are fairly flexible! Good news.
Some less good news, though: hosting can be difficult. In particular user profiles are not an option, meaning that each user needs a separate account to store their scheduled webinars and settings. This also makes it somewhat difficult to locate and engage with specific people in an audience. Also missing is a variety of apps for mobile use, which some of the leading competitors offer as standard. Another potential pitfall for holding webinars using Vyew is the limited attendee capacity, which is capped at just 150 for the Vyew Professional edition. This can be increased at $1 per participant, but there are plenty of other webinar services available which offer a more competitive rate if you buy a package with a larger attendee capacity in the first place.
Some of the optional add-ons available with this webinar service are worth considering. A graphical calculator and equation editor allow you to check that any figures displayed are correct. It also includes an MP3 player, which can be useful for playing sound bites, plus the ability to search YouTube for video clips. Using a synchronisation mode, you can essentially produce a multimedia presentation which will automatically be seen by every attendee without the need for them to download anything or search for it themselves.
Vyew might not be the best webinar service around. Its controls are limited and its attendee capacity needs extending if you intend to take on larger seminars. However, for smaller-scale webinars that aren’t too demanding on host controls, it offers great value.
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