TeamViewer Review

Rating: Fair

  • Features – 4/5 (good set of features)
  • Pricing – 3/5 (not the cheapest, but not the most expensive)
  • Ease of setup – 4/5 (one of the easiest to setup/instruct on use)
  • Address book – 4/5 (base license has 200 managed devices)
  • Customization – 5/5 (easy to customize and deploy clients)

This review was done on 2021-02-06. More details may be added later on. This was a quick writeup and solely based on my usage of the product.

TeamViewer is somewhat of a household name when it comes to remote support. It is by far the most popular remote assistance/support tool on the market. There have been changes made to the program and licensing through the years, but it remains #1.

I will copy/paste the details about the forced obsolescence (with some modifications) and then we’ll move on to more details about the program.

TeamViewer Forced Obsolescence Story

In the past people figured out that using TV5 would mean less ads and more connection times. This somewhat circumvented the licensing issue where it couldn’t be used in commercial environments.

As a Jamaican I can only speak about what I saw here, but I believe the same thing was being done elsewhere. At the time that I purchased my TV11 license there were other individuals and companies still using TV5. This was disturbing because I’m a single tech that made the sacrifice to buy the license while large companies would still use these workarounds for their workforce. I’m talking about well established local software vendors with multiple employees – and they support multiple clients island-wide. Since my license allowed me to connect to all versions below 11, I had no problems doing the connection. I did however take issue with the fact that some newer features would be missing, but as I was the secondary support person I left their installed software version alone.

To protect their intellectual property, the company made changes to their software to prevent connections to/from older versions. This move was good in keeping with the SaaS type of move, but bad for persons like me.

What would happen is this. Let’s say TV15 is the current version (as of 2021-02-05). If you tried to connect to TV5 it would tell you that the connection is not possible – you would need to upgrade. This will also happen if you try to connect to older versions (I believe 2 or more versions behind) than whatever is most current. Any attempts to use an old version (more than 2 versions behind) will result in an error. This forces all persons to be up to date.

Please note that this applies only to free versions. If you’re connecting from TV15 free to any older version paid – it will allow the connection. If you’re connecting from TV11 paid to any free version then you’ll get an upgrade message.

So I had purchased a perpetual license before they moved to a SaaS based model – where you have to pay a subscription fee yearly. This was for TV11, and I had it setup at ALL of my clients. These clients also needed access to their systems, so they would use TV as well – but less than two months after my purchase, they released TV12. I asked for a discount considering the VERY recent purchase – I was given a coupon for less than 10%. That aside, my clients were then forced – somewhere between TV12 and TV13 – to upgrade their software in order to connect to their devices. This then locked me out with my licensed older version. No warning, newsletter, notice or heads-up of any kind was given. I foud out the hard way. This is the reason I only use my licensed product if I have no other choice and moved to finding other solutions.

Back On Track – TV Features & Usage

So. After ranting above a bit, let’s get back to the things you can do with TeamViewer.

Remote Connections

The staple of these type of applications is to be able to connect to a remote device. This is possible on Windows and Mac desktop/laptop platforms – and in more recent times, Android and iOS mobile platforms as well.

The software uses a number with a password combination (ID and PW) which is randomly generated. I assume the ID is based on some hardware components plus available numbers. The password is randomly generated, but you can specify a static password in the settings.

Remote control is available so that a more knowledgeable person can assist a friend, family member or client to get through an issue. From technical troubleshooting and resolution to just helping someone find a feature in a program, the remote access/control/support feature is the primary use of TeamViewer and any other remote application.


TeamViewer allows you to host meetings where someone can be the presenter sharing their screen. I’m not sure if there’s a limit to the number of participants, but this may be dependent on your license type. This is a great feature as it allows you to organize demonstrations for clients, workers, colleagues and others.

Address Book

While a staple with TeamViewer, not every remote application gives you a large enough address book. The smallest subscription starts at 200 devices – which is more than enough for some persons. That means you can have that many devices in your address book but still connect to any other client using the other avenues – including quick support and direct ID/PW.


TeamViewer allows you to guide users on how to do tasks by using drawings/annotations on screen. This lets you draw boxes, lines, arrows and such to show users what to click and where to go. Having persons perform the task instead of doing it for them will help them to remember the steps.


Adding to the annotations, you can take screenshots and then send back to the client as reminders of what steps they should take. This can also be done for auditing of what was done.


TeamViewer supports session recording so that you have a video record of exactly what was done. This is done using a proprietary video codec that is then played back through the program. You can then export it or record it using another application.


In cases where there are clients concerned about security, there are logs available in three areas.

  • The supporter system (the one giving assistance).
  • The supported system (the one getting help).
  • The web control panel.

You will always be able to find who was connected and when.

The Bad Side

Aside from the change in business model and miniscule discount offered when I had recently purchased the software – I have no other issues with the company. The stance taken to push persons towards the new business model was not appreciated either, but it doesn’t take from the fact that their software is one of the best on the market.

There is – however – a cautionary note for all remote tool users. MSPs (Managed Service Providers) have been attacked by hackers, and scammers have used the tools to gain access to systems. Regardless of the tool – TeamViewer or otherwise – please ensure you thoroughly check out who is providing support. Never grant access to anyone that you haven’t confirmed is supposed to have access.


TeamViewer is a trusted name in the business. Their product is stable but does not support older systems. The pricing is workable for medium to large business use cases – smaller businesses or individuals may have issues with the licensing. The current business model is workable if you’ve not experienced the changes during transition. If you need something that works and is well known – this is your tool. If you support older systems (including Windows XP – yes, people still use that) then you may need another tool. If you purchased a perpetual license previously, then the issue would be granting clients access to their machines remotely if that is needed.

Subscribe if you want to their service, but ensure you do research beforehand.



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