Reviews - Web Conferencing

Fuze Review

Fuze Meeting Review

Fuze

Fuze Meeting has a cool user interface and mobile support, but lacks many of the truly robust features of a modern day web conferencing solution.

$20/user/mo

Web Conferencing

Fuze Meeting has a clever user interface and good mobile support. They have made drastic improvements over the past several years. They still have some quirks to iron out, for those looking for a bargain, the drawbacks may be worth the deal.

Fuze is a product of a private company (formerly known as FuzeBox) headquartered in San Francisco, California. The company, founded in 1988, prides itself on customer support and providing solutions for various levels of customer needs. This is reflected in their plan pricing, which ranges from free to $20/mo. With a slick user interface and mobile apps for iPhone, iPad, Android, and Blackberry devices, joining a meeting from anywhere truly is not a problem with Fuze.



PROS:
  • Great HD video, audio, and photo-sharing support
  • Cool user interface
  • Integrated with multiple popular networks (such as Gmail and DropBox)
  • Mobile apps for many different devices
  • Competitive pricing
  • "Fuze-in" feature to bring attendees into meeting
  • Specific application sharing for PC and Mac
  • Free version
CONS:
  • No chat transcripts available
  • No browser-based version for attendees
  • Extremely bad sound quality
  • Badly designed screen sharing
  • Can’t access chat, webcam, and other features while sharing screen


Meeting Setup: (Rating: 8/10)

Unlike with most web conferencing providers, everyone has to download Fuze before using it, including attendees. This detracts time from the meeting itself, but it is the only setup setback we saw. Compared to other companies, this is a big disadvantage for Fuze – and those that use it. Hopefully they address this issue in the future.

Features: (Rating: 7/10)

One point counts against Fuze here: chat. They have chat, but there are no chat transcripts available. That being said, Fuze has many advanced features that we did appreciate, such as Gmail compatibility. They also offer real-time content sharing for collaboration. Remote workforces can attend meetings with screen sharing, 4K images, HD playback, markup tools and more. With their chat, you can IM chat from any device and individuals can update their status from any device as well – for easier contact.

You can also integrate your Fuze account with other programs, like Dropbox, Box, Outlook and more.

Video: (Rating: 10/10)

With up to 12 HD video conferencing streams, Fuze has some of the best video conferencing features on the market. Just make sure you have a good internet connection to take advantage of the technology. Their multiparty HD video conferencing with single and dual HD monitors is perfect for the modern office. As a cloud solution, they also support a variety of USB cameras.

Audio: (Rating: 8/10)

Fuze advertises HD audio, which provides twice the sound quality of a normal phone call. Fuze also has free toll-free audio conferencing. However, during our testing, we had significant problems with static. One of the two testers was on a cable WiFi connection, but as these days web conferencing platforms have to support mobile users, the static was still problematic. They also allow telepresence connections between Cisco, Polycom, LifeSize and Fuze applications and VoIP applications.

Security: (Rating: 10/10)

Fuze takes security seriously. The AES 256 encryption, TLS session encryption, and authentication options keep conversations private.

Ease of Use: (Rating: 6/10)

Fuze’s clunky screen sharing feature is its main drawback in this category. Other than that, the interface is intuitive, with little learning curve. The only drawback is that everyone must download the software – including attendees. Therefore, new attendees may find it too difficult to join and experience the meeting when they are also having to learn new software.

Help and Support: (Rating: 8/10)

A full manual, FAQ articles, and a knowledgebase are all available to customers. Fuze also offers phone support in North America, Europe and Asia. You can submit a ticket online, but there is no chat and they are not upfront about their support hours, which is a drawback.


Fuze Pricing

FREE version for up to 3 attendees with 3 HD Video streams (Fuze Pro features for 30 days)

Pro: $20/user/month for up to 25 attendees, 12 HD Video streams

Premium: $40/user/month for up to 250 Participant, 12 HD Video streams


Specifications

Specification

Pricing

Monthly Price: $20 - $40

Free Version

Free Trial

Attendees

25

250

Help and Support

24/7 Support

Phone

Email

Meeting Invitation

Schedule Meetings

Ad-Hoc Meetings

Meeting Calendar

Invite Attendees After Meeting Started

Expel Attendees

Collaboration & Sharing

Change Presenters

Desktop Sharing

Specific Application Sharing

File Sharing

Whiteboard

Annotation & Drawing Tools

Chat

Video

Video Conferencing

HD Video

Max # of Video Streams: 12

Audio

VoIP Support

Local Toll Dial in #'s

Toll Free Dial in #'s

Mute Participants

Additional Features

Meeting Recording

Outlook Integration

Security

Medium Security help

128-bit AES/Blowfish encryption

Platforms

Windows

Mac

IOS Iphone/Ipad

Android


What We Like About Fuze

High Quality HD Video Support: We liked the Fuze HD video tool. With this tool, you can zoom in/out, pan across a video, and add markups such as arrows, shapes or notes to the video. Video presentations are quite impressive using this tool.

Lots of Supported File Types: Fuze supports a wide array of video formats – FLV, MOV, WMV, and MP4. And as far as images go, they support JPEG, PNG, TIF, BMP and GIF image file types. Fuze also loads and plays MP3 and WAV type audio files.

Easy-to-Use, Slick User Interface: The interface is attractive and puts everything within quick and easy reach. After a few minutes, users will have the whole thing figured out.

Import and Interface with Multiple Networks: Import your personal contacts from a number of popular networks, including Gmail, LinkedIn, Yahoo®, MSN®, and IM contact lists from Microsoft OCS, Yahoo Messenger, Google Talk, AIM, MSN, and ICQ. This allows you to start meetings immediately with any of your personal contacts.

Mobile Apps for iPad™, iPhone™, Android™ and Blackberry™: With the iPad™ or iPhone™ apps, you can host or attend meetings with full presenter control. The Android™ and Blackberry™ apps allow you to attend a meeting from virtually anywhere.

“Fuze-in” Feature Automatically Brings Stragglers into Meeting: If you use your contacts from another application in conjunction with Fuze, the service will likely be able to access phone numbers for the attendees. If an attendee fails to show up at a meeting, Fuze will automatically call them and invite them into the audio portion of the meeting for you.

Specific Application Sharing for PC and Mac: Fuze now offers this coveted feature, which gives presenters the option to display only one application at a time. Even better, this feature is compatible with Mac, unlike with many other web conferencing services.

Free Version and Inexpensive Pricing: The free version of Fuze isn’t as spiffy as the upgraded paid version, but it is free indefinitely, allowing users to decide whether or not they want to buy into the service without having to worry about cancelling a free trial. The paid versions, at $8-$20 with an annual subscription, are some of the lowest in the industry.


What We Don't Like About Fuze

Limited Features in Free Version: Fuze now offers multi-party Video Conferencing and meeting recordings, but you have to subscribe to the paid account to try them out. You cannot test this with the free version.

Attendees Have to Download: Attendees, as well as hosts, have to download software to use Fuze. This takes time away from meetings if it is not done in advance.

Poor Sound Quality: In our testing, the sound quality was wanting. There was a constant static sound that got louder and louder, but went away temporarily when the microphone was muted and un-muted. This would be extremely distracting for larger meetings with many attendees.

Screen Sharing Mode: Fuze’s screen sharing mode has two main issues. First of all, the attendee’s screen stays within the Fuze application, while the presenter cannot see the application while sharing their screen at all. The attendee is left with a miniscule version of the presenter’s screen (too small to read), while the presenter feels as if she or he isn’t even using Fuze anymore.

Second, because the Fuze app is not available to the presenter during the screen sharing process, the presenter cannot see the other people in the meeting or use chat or any of the other meeting tools. This system is frustrating and highly impractical for everyone involved.

No Chat Transcripts Available: Fuze does provide transcripts of your chat sessions, regardless of which account you have.



8.3 Total Score
Clever interface and free app integrations.

Fuze offers a clever interface and web conferencing service that has been slowly improving over the past few years. From a free plan to one that costs $20/mo. they strive to offer innovative communication solutions for businesses of all sizes.

Meeting Setup
8
Features
7
Video
10
Audio
8
Securiy
10
Ease of Use
6
Help and Support
8
PROS
  • Great HD video, audio, and photo-sharing support
  • Cool user interface
  • Integrated with multiple popular networks (such as Gmail and DropBox)
  • Mobile apps for many different devices
  • Competitive pricing
  • "Fuze-in" feature to bring attendees into meeting
  • Specific application sharing for PC and Mac
  • Free version
CONS
  • No chat transcripts available
  • No browser-based version for attendees
  • Extremely bad sound quality
  • Badly designed screen sharing
  • Can’t access chat, webcam, and other features while sharing screen

Fuze

Fuze Meeting has a cool user interface and mobile support, but lacks many of the truly robust features of a modern day web conferencing solution.

$20/user/mo

Web Conferencing


Tags:

Lynn is the founder and chief editor at ReVUEzzle.com. She is responsible for strategy and business development. Her background is in software development, marketing, and project management. She loves camping, traveling, and all things soccer related. She has been married for over 30 years to one great guy and has two adult children. Lynn is also the human companion to two cats - Jynx and Spanky. She is based in Minnesota, USA.

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