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Bringing vocal collaboration to document sharing

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Earlier this month I looked at a new collaboration service called Talko.  The service, which was developed by former Microsoft chief architect Ray Ozzie, aims to bring the spoken word into the kind of collaboration tools that have become common in our workplaces.  Users record a message, that is then attached to a conversation string for others to consume and respond to.

I think it’s a bit clunky and I can’t really see the use case for such a service, but they are amongst a number of products that are aiming to bring a more multi-media based approach to collaboration.  Another is a new service called Blrt, which aims to offer a similar service alongside document management facilities.

The service comes in the form of an app, which is available on both Apple and Android platforms, and offers integrated drawing and voice commenting tools alongside their document sharing and management functions.

Users of the app can share a document or image with colleagues.  They can attach a voice message along with their document, and share with one or more contacts.  They can also annotate their drawing and attach text comments to the document.  Those contacts are sent an immediate alert that they have a document demanding their attention, and can then add their own thoughts via either voice or text.

The service supports a range of document formats, including PDFs and all major image types.  It also claims to offer the facility to record a video based upon the document, so that users can zoom in on particular sections of the document to highlight important parts.  The makers believe they have a video capture technology that requires around 50 times less space than most conventional capture technology, with cloud storage utilized.

The basic package is free, with premium offerings starting at $12.50 a month.  I struggled to see a real use for Talko, and I wonder whether Blrt offers anything over and above what is already on the marketplace in terms of document sharing.  Whilst the video capture technology is interesting, I’m not sure it’s useful enough to warrant a migration away from other packages.

Have a look at the video below and see what you think yourself.

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