LogMeIn Rescue Reaches Customers’ Desktops

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LogMeIn Rescue takes you directly to your customer’s site without leaving your office or having to pre-install any software on the client’s PC.

Let’s dispense with the obvious: LogMeIn Rescue is a remote control service. It’s not magic and it’s not for everyone. But, whether you are trying to troubleshoot a PC or train a remote user, it’s pretty hard to beat what LogMeIn Rescue offers the solution provider looking to offer instant support, without having to step foot in a customer’s office.

Sure, there are a gaggle of remote control products on the market – free ones like VNC, Remote Desktop, which comes as part of Windows, and service based offerings like Citrix Online’s GoToMyPC. Unfortunately, all of those products tend to share a major shortcoming: each has to be preconfigured and preinstalled on the remote PC.

It’s true that in an emergency, you could have an end user try and get one of those products up and running to help them out – but the chances are that that would put a technical burden on the customer, who is already calling for help, and the possibility exists that the customer might just make things worse. What’s more, many customers (or potential customers) may be very uncomfortable with the idea that a remote control package is running on their PC, just waiting for someone to take control!

That’s where LogMeIn Rescue differs from other solutions. The product is a service that a solution provider can setup and brings remote control to a remote system by allowing the user to click on a simple URL and input a connection code. The URL and connection code are only good for the current session and the customer has to do little more than click a link to get the process started. Solution providers will like how easy the whole process is and end users will like that they have full control over when someone can access the PC. When clicking the link, end users can choose whether or not to give full control to the remote support specialist or just allow that remote technician to view their screens.

The real key here is that the customer still feels that they’re in control of the situation and can watch everything that is being done and can feel that they are still protecting their data from spies. In other words, LogMeIn Rescue builds confidence in security, yet still allows full support from their solution provider.

Solution providers looking to get started with the product need only visit the company’s website and signup. LogMeIn offers a free 30-day trial for those wanting to kick the tires. Sadly, the subscription service isn’t cheap – a year’s subscription for unlimited use for a single technician (supporting only one PC at a time) comes in at 699 GBP. While that may be a considerable hit, realistically most should be able to pass that cost onto their customers by charging a remote session/support fee.

Another cost factor to consider is how much the product can save in time and travel expenses, solution providers will no longer have to hit the road to solve a multitude of customer problems or offer a quick demo or training session. Of course, there are a few other vendors that offer a similar service, GoToMyPC Assist for example and TechinLine remote desktop (Assist costs more; TechinLine offers fewer features).

Solution providers will find that LogMeIn Rescue is a well designed service that keeps the chores of the help desk in mind. The product works with both Internet Explorer and Firefox and as a service, can work around most firewalls. Everything takes place in an attractive management screen that runs from a Web browser. Here, technicians can track sessions, input information, launch support sessions and generate service reports. All of those features can help solution providers to capture fees that otherwise may go unbilled and also helps to establish a support history for customers, perhaps saving a technician countless hours in researching a problem, which may have occurred before.

The service accomplishes more than just remote control – technicians can copy files, capture screen shots, access task manager and even chat with the remote user. Although the service has been around for some time and has become well established, some recent enhancements are worth noting. The company has added support for BlackBerries, Window’s Mobile Devices, Symbian OS devices and Macintosh. While those features do increase the subscription fee, they prove to be an excellent way to extend support to even more devices and grow a solution provider’s managed services capabilities.

While some may consider something as simple as remote control old hat, LogMeIn Rescue can help solution providers improve their service offerings or be used as a first line of support for system integrators. It will be up to the savvy solution provider to optimize the potential offered by LogMeIn Rescue (and products like it), but those solution providers will probably discover unanticipated situations where the service can become a real ally.