Citrix to add video conferencing to GoToMeeting service

Citrix Systems will add video to its web conferencing service GoToMeeting via a new feature called HD Faces, the company said on Wednesday at its Synergy user conference in Berlin, Germany.

Video conferencing has had a hard time making the leap from a few special conferencing rooms to enterprise users' desktops, in part because it can be to complex to use, according to Citrix.

However, with HD Faces Citrix hopes to change that: there is nothing to configure so if users have a PC with a webcam it should "just work," according to Chief Marketing Officer Wes Wasson.

HD Faces will become a standard feature of GoToMeeting, and come at no extra charge. Today, GoToMeeting costs from $49 per month.

The service will be able to handle up to six video streams, according to Citrix. A demo during the Wednesday keynote looked impressive.

A final version of GoToMeeting with HD Faces will start shipping in the first quarter. Beta testing at the end of October, according to Citrix.

Citrix is also expanding the reach of GoToMeeting and the other members of the GoTo family by announcing German and French versions of the services, which will be available in Germany, France, Switzerland and Austria. Support for native languages will give users a much better experience, according Mark Templeton, CEO at Citrix, and increase usage.

Besides GoToMeeting, the family includes GoToWebinar for presentations to larger audiences, and GoToTraining, for interactive training sessions. GoToWebinar costs from $99 per month and GoToTraining $149 per month. Both services include GoToMeeting functions. Together, the GoTo services were used by more than 100 million people last year, according to Citrix.

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