WebEx has managed to maintain a pretty good lock on the enterprise world with their online video conferencing/meeting service, but there’s one place they’ve always fallen a bit short: small businesses.
The problem? It’s just too dang expensive. Even on the cheapest plan (which supports 1 host with 25 people per meeting), it’s a solid 50 bucks per month. When you’re on a bootstrap budget and every penny counts (and more importantly, when reasonable alternatives can be hacked together on the cheap), 50 bucks might as well be $5000.
Looking to make their first stab into the small business world, WebEx will later today launch WebEx 8, a cheaper monthly service focused directly on companies with smaller teams.
WebEx 8 offers the same functionality as the other plans that WebEx already offers, with one exception: instead of 25 people per meeting, you’re limited to 8.
Beyond that, it’s all pretty much a feature-by-feature match. Namely, you’ll get:
Of course, some of this price shifting can almost certainly be attributed to WebEx feeling a bit of the heat from unlikely foes tiptoeing their way into the arena. With things like Google+’ Hangout feature and Join.me respectively making huge group video chat and desktop sharing accessible to anyone with half a brain, some of WebEx’s key selling points are starting to seem a bit less sound. They’ve still got a few differentiating features (like their rather solid iPhone/iPad apps) to fight back with, but that price had to come down eventually.
The $19 plan should go live later this morning.
WebEx, now part of Cisco, provides on-demand applications for collaborative business on the Web. These applications enhance high-touch business processes, such as sales and training, with Web-touch interactions. As an on-demand provider, WebEx facilitates both internal and external collaboration. Applications are delivered over the WebEx MediaTone Network, a global network specifically designed for the highly secure delivery of on-demand applications. WebEx applications support multipoint video conferencing, Web conferencing, telework and application remote control.