TeamViewer Saves Travel Costs Through Online Collaboration

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TeamViewer lets you connect between employees--and contractors or customers--to share online presentations, whiteboards, transfer files, and more. It's a virtual meeting environment that can save you time and costs versus face-to-face communication.

While the home version is not supported for business applications, it's a free download and includes the same features; check it out to see if TeamViewer will help in your situation.

Each party downloads and runs a small software package, with support for Windows and Mac operating systems. Since TeamViewer relies on Flash and your web browser, you don't have to install additional utilities.

The software package helps make the connection, which works through firewalls, NAT, and other tricky networks. Once you give permission, a remote user can control a local PC; you can also drive your own system if you log in as yourself.

But aside from the simple setup, TeamViewer's collaboration tools give its biggest benefit. Chat windows, session logs, file transfers, and other staples help you remotely conference. You could also place a conference call (unrelated to TeamViewer) to speak to everyone.

All licenses include unlimited client installations. The most expensive license--$2,590--also gives you unlimited server users with up to 15 participants in a meeting room. (Another unlimited pack costs $1,299 and supports 10 participants. The single $649 license works with three clients, and you can add extra hosts for $129 each.

The initial expense can be steep for small businesses, but TeamViewer remotely connects between collaborators and clients. If that saves you travel costs and boosts your productivity, it could be worth it.

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