Slack is launching interactive screen sharing, the company announced Wednesday in a blog post. The new feature could boost the platform's appeal for use in conference rooms, or as a collaboration tool for remote workers.
Interactive screen sharing lets team members work on the same project in real time. Users can edit, design, and program content or collaborate on customer tickets, with all of their work visible and available to others on the call, the post said.
The feature's beta testers also found the new feature can help with troubleshooting, where one person can guide another through a problem click-by-click.
SEE: The case for building a collaborative organization (Tech Pro Research)
The screen sharing feature is available for all paid users on the Mac or Windows desktop apps starting Wednesday, according to the post. No timeframe was shared for a roll out to the mobile app.
To use the feature, enter a Slack call, share your screen, and hit the "share control of your screen" button. Participants—a call can hold up to 15—then get their own cursor and the ability to click, type, and edit. When participants don't have control, they can temporarily draw on the screen to bring focus to something.
With over 9 million weekly active users and 2 million paid users, interactive screen sharing was Slack's most requested calls feature, according to the post. On-screen collaboration via Slack allows streamlined communication in a spot a team is most likely already using and familiar with. Plus working in real time cuts down on time spent passing a project file from person to person for edits or updates.
The feature also helps teams in different locations collaborate as if they're in the same spot without flying across the country or having remote workers come in for the day.
Screen sharing is the last call service to be added from Screenhero, which Slack bought in 2014. Users won't have to toggle between the two tools, streamlining Slack calls. Due to the consolidation, Screenhero will no longer be a standalone app beginning Dec. 1, the post said. Some Screenhero users will get a 60-day free trial of Slack.
The 3 big takeaways for TechRepublic readers
- Slack launched an interactive screen sharing feature, folding all of Screenhero's calling and sharing functions into the Slack product.
- The highly-requested feature allows more collaboration on projects, useful when working on editing or programming tasks as a team. The feature can also help in troubleshooting or customer service scenarios, letting one person guide someone through a process one click at a time.
- Screen sharing helps teams with people in different locations work together in real time, much like they were in the same room.
- How to share your screen in Slack (TechRepublic)
- 10 resources to get the most out of Slack in your workplace (TechRepublic)
- Slack: The smart person's guide (TechRepublic)
- Top 5: Things to know about Slack (TechRepublic)
- Slack adds screen sharing for video calls (ZDNet)
Olivia Krauth is a Multiplatform Reporter at TechRepublic.