LogMeIn is building on the growth of its Join.me online meeting and collaboration app by releasing a new version of Join.me that's specifically targeted to enterprises, featuring deeper security, management and authentication tools.
The new Join.me enterprise app service was announced by the company April 24 as a way for larger businesses to use the service while maintaining needed controls by corporate IT departments. Businesses seek services like Join.me, the company said, but not at the expense of higher security and compliance risks.
Join.me allows business users to collaborate and meet online, while sharing information and desktops as desired. The service is cloud-based and works through a Web browser, requiring no installation or setup, unlike some competitors. The original service didn't include some of the extra and critical security and compliance tools sought by business users, which is where the new enterprise version fills the gaps, according to the company. LogMeIn claims that some 27 million online meetings were conducted using Join.me in 2013.
Among the key features of the new enterprise version are support for deployments of more than 25 users; Single Sign On (SSO) support via ADFS Integration and Active Directory Sync; advanced user policies and permission settings for groups and individual users; and robust user management with provisioning, de-provisioning and user access controls, according to LogMeIn. Also included is 100GB of managed, secure cloud storage for sharing and storing recorded meetings and meeting-related files (the storage is conducted through LogMeIn's Cubby file sync and share service); integration with Microsoft Outlook; and one-tap audio conference hosting for iPhones.
"With Join.me, we're focused on delivering ongoing innovation designed for an era dominated by employee preference," Lou Orfanos, LogMeIn's vice president of collaboration products, said in a statement. "Join.me enterprise is an example of how we can help companies strike a balance between their business needs and the simplicity, speed and elegance that their employees crave."
Prepaid annual subscriptions for the new Join.me enterprise service start at $19 per user per month.
Several analysts who cover the online collaboration and meeting app marketplace told eWEEK that the new Join.me enterprise offering adds useful tools for users from the remote connectivity and collaboration vendor.
"Yes, directory integration and user policies and permissioning are basic requirements for many shops to even consider applications like this—whether they use these features or not," wrote Phil Karcher, an analyst with Forrester, in an email reply to eWEEK. "Not all businesses do, but some need to restrict who can see or join what meetings—to prevent sensitive internal meetings from being visible or accessible externally."
For businesses that want to offer Join.me to large groups of users, the new specialized management tools are key, he said. "And when it comes to large deployments, tech managers absolutely need tools to automate provisioning licenses. And to de-provision when someone leaves."
Roopam Jain, a Web conferencing analyst with Frost & Sullivan, told eWEEK in an email reply that the new enterprise version of Join.me better meets the control and security requirements of IT departments. "To the extent that you can meet both needs by giving IT the management and control they need over all these user-introduced apps, you have a winning combination," she wrote.
In the marketplace, Join.me is a market disruptor, going up against many other competitors that offer online meeting services, Jain wrote. "They have emerged at a fast pace and seen solid traction especially among SMB users making it simpler to join meetings that are more intuitive as well as affordable. Join.me has seen a tremendous following driven by these factors. The enterprise version will provide join.me a better position among large enterprise users that look for greater control and security. As a result, we see the competitive landscape changing and offerings like LogMeIn join.me are staking bigger claims in the market."
David Mario Smith, an analyst with Aragon Research, told eWEEK in an email reply, "Join.me is one of the lower cost Web conferencing tools who we believe is one of the drivers contributing to the race to the bottom in Web conferencing pricing. Businesses are already using Join.me on a departmental level. With more enterprise controls, we expect adoption to increase."
One "crucial requirement" that Join.me still must address, said Smith, is improved video capabilities, which he called a "gaping hole they need to address quickly."
In March 2014, LogMeIn unveiled the enterprise version of its Cubby cloud-based file sync and sharing service, which lets users access any critical files they store in their "Cubbies" from any computer, anywhere.