We’ll wrap up our first launch week with a look behind the scenes. After we joined Datadog in 2022, we went back to the drawing board to make the things you liked about CoScreen even better and to fix the things many of you did not like.
CoScreen was always meant to be different — Enabling everyone to share, and control what is being shared, at the same time. We see collaboration as a natural extension of you and your team, closely coupled with your OS — instant, fast, seamless, democratic. A truly different way to pair program, debug, teach each other, or jam on great ideas. All that made a lot of sense conceptually when CoScreen went to the front page of Hacker News in 2019 but it was hard to get it right.
With the all-new CoScreen V5, we feel we’re closer than ever. We rebuilt huge parts of our app from scratch to make it more resilient and efficient by relying heavily on Rust. We architected our screen sharing engine and revamped the user interface to make it more intuitive so that is never in your way.
What you liked about CoScreen, so we made it even better ⏫
Here's a quick demo of the all-new CoScreen V5:
- Instant screen sharing — everywhere: Share your windows with just one click on the tab above each of your windows. You never have to search for the right window anymore or be anxious to share the wrong one.
With V5, tabs don’t get lost anymore and windows are sharable from any display.
- Multi-directional collaboration: You can share, while Alice shares, while Bob shares. Everyone sees everyone’s windows and never misses any context.
With V5, the new remote tabs give you even more fine-granular control.
- Instant remote control: Type, click, and draw on any shared window as if it was your own.
With V5, remote mouse pointers are now moving as smoothly as if they were connected to your computer.
- High-def code: We transmit windows streams with their native resolution whenever possible so you can read each other’s code without getting dizzy even if you’re on a 4k display.
With V5, they won’t become obfuscated anymore even if the sharing user moves another window on top of it.
- Built-in audio and video chat: Crisp audio and video feeds so you always stay connected.
With V5, the video chat UI is fully responsive from full-screen to tiny corner window so it’s never in the way.
What some of you did not like, so we fixed it in CoScreen V5 🔥
1. Instant remote control is great. But I keep clicking and typing accidentally into my teammates’ windows.
With CoScreen V5, remote windows have a convenient tab which enables you to choose whether you want to watch, control, or draw on them.
You no longer have to worry about clicking or interfering with other users inadvertently, even when you’re resizing and moving shared windows.
2. CPU utilization and latency are too high for shared windows to feel real-time.
We’ve spent a ton of cycles on profiling and improving the resource-intensive parts of our stack and we’ve made huge progress. Remote mouse pointers are now silky-smooth with 60 FPS+ and latency should feel near-real time whenever you have a solid network connection. But rest assured, we won’t stop working on this and encoding high def video streams is a demanding task.
3. I can’t share windows from several displays at the same time. My windows stop being shared if I move them between displays or macOS Spaces.
With CoScreen V5.0, you can now share windows from different displays. Share iTerm from your laptop and Chrome from your 4k display. Your teammates will see both of them at the same time. You move them to another display? They are still sharing as if nothing happened. We don’t know any other screen sharing tool that enables that.
This feature is available in CoScreen V5 on macOS with Windows support coming soon.
4. It takes too long for new users to join me on CoScreen or they can’t join at all because they are on Linux.
You will soon be able to join meetings and pair programming sessions on CoScreen from your browser or even your mobile phone. Send an invite to a new team member or even one of your customers, and they’ll be with you on CoScreen within seconds — even on Linux! We still hope to be able to give Linux users the full desktop experience at a future point.
Dive deeper into the latest improvements
There is much more information in the blog posts and demos from our launch week:
- CoScreen Launch Week - Day 1: 10x pair programming
- CoScreen Launch Week - Day 2: Screen Sharing Unleashed
- CoScreen Launch Week - Day 3: Collaborate more quickly
- CoScreen Launch Week - Day 4: Collaborate from your browser
Here's how you can use CoScreen V5 for free
We’re excited to share that you can use CoScreen for free for one-on-ones and even larger meetings for the time being. Download it for macOS and Windows.
Now that we’ve rebuilt the foundation with V5, we’ll go deeper than ever before. Expect better audio (state of the art noise reduction), better video (background blurring), even lower CPU consumption and fewer bugs (thank you, Rust), and novel ways to share dev tools (we can’t say more yet, but it’s terminally mind blowing).