What do you like best?
What I like best is their corporate culture. I have been using their product since 2009 and have never heard any of their employees describe the company as anything less than supportive. The environment they have created allows their employees to be productive and creative, which has served them well over the years as their product continues to improve and consistently offer new features. They actively solicit input from (and then listen to) their customers. I am impressed by the level of customer service they provide. Every time I have contacted them to ask about a potential future feature, they have been very engaged in asking about my needs and how they could best serve them. They seem to understand that their customers can help them identify needs, and if they provide solutions, they will build loyalty. Their response time is also commendable; I have never waited to get a communication from them about a problem I was having (even if it was due to user error). They also continue to expand their database of Panopto-based tutorials and answers to FAQ, which allows customers to find exactly what they need.
What do you dislike?
Nothing has struck me yet to dislike, although if I had to point to something that is challenging, it might be that some of their less-well-known features (such as captioning) are not intuitive to set up. I don't have a need for it now, but it could become an issue in the future. If it is, I have no doubt they would provide me with the resources (tutorials, examples, and communications with technical staff) to address my needs.
Recommendations to others considering the product
They have use cases highlighted on their website, but speaking with their customer service personnel could provide you with even more useful information specifically addressing your needs. I use their services in HIgher Education but as a former technology trainer, I can tell you that there are many more applications that make sense for this product. Providing legacy recordings and linking or associating them with each other to provide a network of resources smoothly is no easy task, yet Panopto seems to thrive on the challenge of doing just that. At their recent (and first) North American User Conference in Chicago, they provided a venue for real-time multiple customer input and critique of their product. Based on the responses they gave to every question conceivable, it is apparent that they want to service their customers, not push them into a direction the company has previously established as their goal. They are extremely accommodating, and are not hard-sell like some companies. I would recommend that anyone who is interested in their services should contact them for a Free Trial.
What business problems are you solving with the product? What benefits have you realized?
They provide a platform for communicating between parties: faculty, students, and guest presenters. Their product allows seamless integration of video, PowerPoint, captioning and additional resources. My students are creating as well as consuming content using Panopto. As we build a library of previously recorded informative sessions, students can pick up where previous cohorts left off and take their thinking to a new level - addressing problems that were beyond the reach of students a few years ago. I have noticed that the quality of the discourse has increased and the level of engagement extends far beyond what is required or even suggested. Students benefit from being active participants in their own learning, and they are better prepared for more advanced classes, which benefits everyone. When they leave our program they are ready to hit the ground running since they have had more opportunities to take in a variety of perspectives from others, as well as review standardized content as often as they feel it is beneficial. I also use it to record instructional videos and demonstrations, and their mobile app makes it easy to use anywhere, even in the field. It is extremely flexible and reliable.