Adobe Connect

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Adobe Connect

$45 - $292/Month, 30-Day free trial, up to 25 participants.

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Adobe is a company that is known very well to graphic designers. In recent years, they’ve released several successful lines of products, including Fireworks, Captivate, and a wide array of other successful tools. The first stable release of Adobe Connect came in 2012. After Macromedia had been absorbed into Adobe, the old Breeze product was rebranded as Connect.

We really felt like these tools are great and we’ll discuss them more in the review. Adobe Connect integrates very easily with other Adobe apps, making it one of the most robust tools we reviewed in this industry.

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The Good

  • Collaboration tool
  • Integrations
  • Free trial

We decided to check out the SDK (Software Development Kit) collaboration tool. If your business does a lot of Flash development, Adobe Connect is a great tool for you. You need to know a little bit of code if you want to add this extension to your Connect setup. You can use the SDK collaboration tool to:

  • Test web-based apps for a website or business.
  • Check out if a Flash game is working.
  • Tweak Flash applications on the fly with other collaborators.

When we reviewed other companies in the web conferencing industry, we weren't able to find conference tools that featured an SDK collaboration tool. This makes Adobe Connect a great fit for developers.

Another thing that we liked about Adobe Connect was the integrations for many different apps. We found a ton of custom modules to make your Connect meeting room look great and work great for users. Higher education users and trainers will like Adobe Connect because of its easy integration into most learning management systems. This feature makes Adobe Connect Learn a standard for higher education users. Some of the LMS (Learning Management System) systems supported by Adobe Connect Learning include:

  • Docebo LMS
  • SAP
  • Moodle LMS

We also liked the latest release of Adobe Connect, which makes it great for event management. The most recent stable release added a robust set of features that streamlined new event registration and large webinar support.

Typically, Adobe products are complicated and a little bit clunky to use sometimes. However, Adobe products are among the most functional software. We found out a lot by reading the PDF documentation on Adobe Connect's website. We found out that there is a robust collection of annotation tools, including arrows, shapes, text, and more. We wanted to learn more about Adobe Connect, so we checked out some of the webinar and demonstrations that they host on a daily basis.

Another great support tool was the Adobe Connect free 30-day trial. You are able to try the full professional features of Connect risk free and determine whether or not it is a good fit for your business.

We took a look at the custom modules for your Adobe Connect rooms and found some of the following customizations to be pretty exciting:

  • nextage VideoPod: Since Adobe only supports 420 p video at this time, this is a great tool for converting your videos from 4:3 to 16:9, improving the viewing experience.
  • Connect Roshambo: An extension that let's you play paper, rock, scissors to settle meeting disputes.
  • Social Stream Pod: Instagram and Twitter integration for your meeting.
  • Stage Lights: A timer to keep your presenters and speakers from running over their allotted time.
  • PDF annotation tools: Markup tools that extend your built-in annotation abilities.

There is also extensive event management and CRM integration:

  • Sales Force CRM integration.
  • inteVISTA Go and Sell for taking your webinar content.
  • Eloqua Cloud Connector: Provides powerful webinar analytics.

For all these great features, Adobe Connect is available at scalable, reasonable prices, whether you want to teach a large webinar or just have a meeting where a few people beam in.

The Bad

  • HD video
  • UI and UX

We had to look for things that we didn't like about Adobe Connect. Where is the HD video? We found that Adobe Connect natively only supports 420 p resolution. However, there are several third-party apps out there that support HD streaming video, helping your customers get the best video possible. Also, the nextage VideoPod will increase your aspect ratio, but not increase the quality of the video.

Another issue we had was with the complicated nature of the UI and user experience. Ultimately, Adobe Connect is a very powerful tool. However, there are a lot of user buttons and menus that make the learning curve a little bit steep. The user manual that is on PDFs on the site is also very large. To learn a specific function, a new user must spend considerable time reading about and testing the functionality of the platform.

The Bottom Line

Overall, we like that Adobe Connect provided lots of apps and custom modules, tools like the Stage Lights to help control web conferences, and the SKD collaboration tools. Adobe Connect has powerful analytics for understanding the behavior or conferencing attendees and if you are looking to integrate your web conferencing software to other programs like Sales Force CRM then it will be a good fit for you.

The downside to Connect was simply the lousy video quality. We would like to see better quality video than 420 p. HD video should be included in the next release of Adobe Connect for us to recommend this platform without reservation. However, we do recommend Adobe Connect for most users, as it has some of the best conferencing tools out there.


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