Can 'co-browsing' trump screen sharing? GoInstant thinks so

Can 'co-browsing' trump screen sharing? GoInstant thinks so

Summary: GoInstant aims to create a more intimate customer support relationship via shared browsing instead of screen sharing.


GoInstant on Tuesday launched a public beta in a bid to introduce "co-browsing" to the market and alleviate some of the quirks with screen sharing, notably the requirement that you download software or install a browser plug-in.

The startup, which is having its coming out party at TechCrunch Disrupt in San Francisco, has an interesting approach that may be a good fit for enterprises looking for inside sales and customer support tools.

Jevon MacDonald, co-founder and CEO of GoInstant, said its application is designed to focus "on anyone working with customers." MacDonald said the aim is to develop an interactive experience where both the customer and support worker can co-browse. Typical screen sharing tools tend to be more of a passive experience.

For instance, I needed a few minutes to realize I could also surf the Web in this co-browsing arrangement. For tools like WebEx, I'm typically a mere viewer. In the GoInstant use case, a customer support rep could see what troubles a user was having with a specific Web application. Instead of working from a description of a bug, the rep would actually see what was happening.

MacDonald's bet is that the time is right for co-browsing. "Co-browsing is more important today given the adoption of Salesforce and Web applications," said MacDonald. GoInstant's other bet is that shared browsing experiences will matter more as customers become increasingly mobile.

GoInstant, which raised $1.7 million in capital in its first round of funding, is looking at a revenue model that will rely on channel deals with customer support vendors. Pricing details have yet to be worked out, but there will be a per user per month fee, said MacDonald.

Topics: CXO, Cloud

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  • Doesn't make sense.

    Umm, what?

    Doesn't make any sense to me. What happens if you have printer issues, or you're using an app that isn't web based?

    Bah, forget this, and forget screen sharing as well - usually real remote support uses remote desktop.
    • RE: Can 'co-browsing' trump screen sharing? GoInstant thinks so

      @CobraA1 Thanks for weighing in. We are web only, so no printer support! As you mention, there are a lot of great desktop support apps for that sort of thing, but GoInstant does for the web what Bomgar etc do for the desktop.
  • RE: Can 'co-browsing' trump screen sharing? GoInstant thinks so

    I can see where this would be useful for clients or prospects whose security policies don't allow them to install apps on their machines.

    However this sounds like it is a 1-on-1 product, correct? What if I am doing a demo or training for 5 people in different locations (we do this frequently)? What does each user see on the screen?
  • RE: Can 'co-browsing' trump screen sharing? GoInstant thinks so

    Reminds me of Tribal Voice's "powwow" from the early days...