If everyone read the instruction manual for the newest device purchase, the world might be a happier place. Clients would be more informed and capable of solving technical issues, vendors could scale down support centers, and tech forums might become lonely places.
In a world where time is money and everyone seems to be on information overload, reading the instruction manual isn’t always an option. When problems arise, vendors – especially in the technology space – can strengthen or lose client relationships by their availability and level of support. Adopting the latest advancements in technology and connectivity is good for business, so SMBs up to large enterprises need access to their devices and systems.
Remote desktop software, also known as remote access software, can be an easier option. Whether it’s a workstation, laptop, phone, or server system, remote access solutions give clients the flexibility to continue work no matter their location or distance from the accessed device. Instead of traveling or shipping devices, support technicians can resolve client issues from the comfort of their workplace or home office.
Also read our guide to the Remote Desktop Software Market
With a range of features that enhance customer experience and differentiate their products, we dive into the top vendors in the remote desktop software industry. For a look at market leaders, see our full reviews of TeamViewer and LogMeIn.
Also Read: Teamviewer vs. LogMeIn
Best Remote Desktop Software
|Vendor||Est.||Headquarters||Remote Desktop Product|
|BeyondTrust||1985||Atlanta, GA||Secure Remote Support|
|Check Point||1993||Tel Aviv, Israel||IPsec VPN|
|Citrix||1989||Fort Lauderdale, FL||Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops|
|ConnectWise||2008||Tampa, FL||ConnectWise Control|
|Goverlan||1998||Miami, FL||Goverlan Reach|
|Kaseya||2000||Dublin, Ireland||Kaseya VSA|
|LogMeIn||2003||Boston, MA||LogMeIn Rescue|
|N-Able||1999||Oklahoma City, OK||Take Control|
|Parallels||1999||Bellevue, WA||Parallels Access|
|RealVNC||2002||Cambridge, UK||VNC Connect|
|Splashtop||2010||San Jose, CA||Splashtop Remote Support|
|Zoho||1996||Chennai, India||Zoho Assist|
Founded in 2014, AnyDesk already holds a dominant market position. The Germany-based remote desktop software AnyDesk boasts over 300 million downloads worldwide, 400 million sessions per month, and 42 million bridged miles per month. Using its proprietary video codec dubbed DeskRT, AnyDesk has the patent to back up its technology.
AnyDesk can run on most common operating systems, including applications for Windows, macOS, iOS, Linux, and Raspberry Pi. For security, AnyDesk offers military-grade TLS 1.2 technology and RSA 2048 asymmetric encryption. Deployment options include cloud-based deployment or an on-premises solution for clients that pick the Enterprise plan.
AnyDesk is free for personal use and offers three annual subscription packages with a 14-day free trial.
|Essentials||$118.80||Remote access for 1 technician and 1 device|
|Performance||$238.80||Added business features, up to 3 devices|
|Enterprise||Get quote||Advanced security and customization, on-premises ready|
Started in 1985 as Symark, the Atlanta, Georgia-based BeyondTrust is a leading provider of privileged access management (PAM) solutions. Formerly known as Bomgar, BeyondTrust remote desktop software is Secure Remote Support.
BeyondTrust offers Secure Remote Support as a cloud or on-premises appliance and supports Windows, Mac, Linux, iOS, and Android operating systems. BeyondTrust offers unlimited remote access on LAN via remote desktop protocol (RDP), external networks, and isolated segments for unattended support. Other features include automation features, custom branding, and log records. With potential integrations with IAM, CRM, SIEM, and more, Secure Remote Support stands out for organizations with broad support needs.
Potential clients can request a free trial. Otherwise, the cloud remote access infrastructure solution will cost you $2,097 for the first year per license, while the physical appliance is a one-time purchase and available on request.
Check Point Software
Check Point Software Technologies goes way beyond offering just remote desktop software and support solutions. Since 1993, the Israeli vendor has been an innovative (hello FireWall-1) and consistent cybersecurity solution provider. In 2020, Check Pointed launched its global partner program. Onto their remote desktop software offering, Check Point’s solutions are the IPsec VPN and SSL VPN Portal.
As security gateways, the VPN encrypts and decrypts traffic from designated gateways and clients for remote access. Through IKE negotiation, organizations needing to reach clients can authenticate a user’s identity and verify the security gateway for use. This authentication process can be via digital certificates through the ICA or a third-party PKI solution and pre-shared secrets. Check Point guarantees its VPN tunnels offer authenticity, privacy, and integrity for remote access operations with a focus on security.
Check Point Pricing
For enterprise organizations looking for channel partners that offer a portfolio of products, Check Point is worth considering. As standalone products, the IPsec VPN costs up to $1,000-1,200 while the price for the SSL VPN Portal is not available. Potential clients can request a free trial.
Born from an IBM developer in Texas in 1989, the multinational software vendor finds its home in California and Florida. From the get-go, Citrix Solutions focused on remote access technology. Partners with Microsoft, Citrix developed Windows remote applications in the 1990s, and its IPO in 1995 put it atop the young industry. Today, Citrix is a leading provider of server and desktop virtualization and cloud computing solutions.
Citrix offers Remote PC Access as a component to their Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops solutions for remote desktop software. With a virtual delivery agent (VDA) installed on the desired office device or system, the VDA will connect to either the Cloud Connector (the Citrix Cloud deployment) or the Delivery Controller (on-premises deployment). Administrators can manage their fleet of computers through access, policy, and HDX stack capabilities. Other features include session management, diagnostic data, and Wake on LAN for remote boot capabilities.
As a standalone product, the Citrix Remote PC Access costs $180 annually per user. At just $10 more per month, clients might also elect for the Workspace Premium Plus package. Upon request, clients can schedule a free demo with Citrix personnel.
Also Read: Citrix Makes Nice With Microsoft Again
Developed initially as ScreenConnect in 2008, the Florida vendor changed its name to ConnectWise Control in 2017. For remote desktop software, ConnectWise has two solutions: ConnectWise Control Support and ConnectWise Control Access.
ConnectWise Control offers remote access, flexible plans, and secure connections. For the Support package, prime targets are help desks, technical support services, and personal use. When you need remote access to a client’s device, this solution can connect to any managed endpoint, resolve issues, and get out. ConnectWise Control Access, by comparison, is fit for internal IT, point-of-sale, remote workforces, and managed service providers (MSP). Focused on endpoint management, Access offers unlimited access agents and flexibility.
ConnectWise Control Pricing
For both solutions, Support, and Access, a free trial is available upon request. ConnectWise Control Support clients have three annual subscription options for one user ($228), one user and three computers ($420), and one user and ten computers ($540). The Access package starts with annual subscriptions of 25 computers at $360, up to 2,500 agents at $15,000.
Founded on Wall Street in the mid-90s to serve banking industry help desks, Goverlan aimed to simplify remote IT support. Now headquartered in Florida, the vendor’s remote desktop software and flagship product is Goverlan Reach.
With Reach, clients can remote control any device, provide technical support, deploy software and patches, monitor endpoint compliance, and automate IT workflows and systems management. The Goverlan MDM plan goes further in providing mobile device support and performing application, security, asset management, and secure content distribution. Other features with Reach 10 include an accelerated rendering engine, support for 4K, new session optimization settings, and compatibility with app formats like MSIX, PKG, and DMG.
Goverlan offers three packages for their Reach remote desktop solution: Standard, Professional, and Enterprise. At an annual cost of $660, clients can also add on incident management.
|Standard||$420||Unattended access, remote control, systems management|
|Professional||$960||Adds: Active Directory integration and management|
|Enterprise||$1800||Adds: Global systems, automation, compliance, remediation|
Since 2000, IT services vendor Kaseya built a family of companies offering comprehensive, integrated management for organization networks. Headquartered in Dublin, Ireland, Kaseya targets SMBs and managed service providers (MSPs) with a suite of solutions. Their remote desktop software solution is Kaseya VSA.
Kaseya VSA offers monitoring and managing server, desktop, and laptop endpoints, SNMP network devices, and IoT devices. Features include auto-remediate IT incidents, software patch management, and managed backups and antivirus software. As the foundation of the Kaseya IT Complete Platform, VSA as a consideration comes with the opportunity to partner with a comprehensive IT services provider. From automation to a managed SOC and IT service desk solutions, Kaseya can be a comprehensive partner.
Kaseya VSA is available for a 14-day free trial, but no additional pricing information is available.
Also Read: Kaseya Security Solution Protects MSPs
N-Able’s client base includes more than 25,000 MSPs, 500,000 SMEs, and 7 million endpoints. IT giant SolarWinds acquired cloud-based N-Able in 2013 for $120M. After acquiring LOGICnow in 2016, the Tulsa, Oklahoma-based enterprise combined the two vendors to create SolarWinds MSP. The subsidiary’s name changed back to N-able in 2021.
N-Able’s remote access software is Take Control and Take Control Plus. The base plan offers attended and unattended support, native iOS and Android apps, custom branding, live chat, and troubleshooting tools. Take Control Plus includes those features and adds batch scripting, registry editing, full mobile compatibility, technician performance reporting, and more. Other features include 4K resolution, multi-monitor functionality, and a central console to manage it all.
One of the few vendors to offer a monthly subscription, N-Able also provides a 14-day free trial before starting a plan. The Take Control solution comes at an annual cost of $228 per user ($19/mo), while Take Control Plus is $540 ($45/mo). Take Control Plus offers a single user access to 10 computers.
Also Read: N-Able Connects with Microsoft Intune
Founded in 1999 outside of Seattle, Washington, Parallels is a software company focused on virtualization, automation, and remote access solutions. In 2018, Parallels was acquired by the Canadian software company Corel, and in 2020, Google announced a partnership with Parallels that would put their software in Chrome Enterprise. Parallels’ remote desktop software is Parallels Access.
Parallels Access gives clients the ability to access files on remote computers, the cloud, local storage, and share and manage files. For endpoint customers struggling to use Parallels Access, the organization administrator can quickly connect with Remote Help features. The Parallels remote access solution also has a range of mobile compatibility and user experience features, including a desktop application, full-screen apps, Lock’n’Go Magnifying Glass, optimized screen resolutions, and tablet multitasking.
Parallels offer two types of plans for one and two-year subscription periods for Parallels Access. The below table outlines pricing relative to the Personal and Business plans. For an additional $49.99 per year, organizations can also continue to add sets of 5 computers.
|Plan||1 Year||2 Years||Users||PCs||Mobile|
Born out of the AT&T virtual network computing (VNC) division in 2002, RealVNC used the VNC protocol to help organizations adopt remote access support. RealVNC boasts over 250 million downloads, 90,000 enterprise customers, and 101 million cloud sessions per year.
Options for clients include VNC Connect Professional for individuals and SMBs and VNC Connect Enterprise for large organizations.VNC Connect Professional offers one technician up to ten devices with a cloud-based connection and 128-bit encryption AES. VNC Connect Enterprise further adds direct connections, 256-bit AES, single sign-on (SSO), and comprehensive session history.
A third plan offered by RealVNC is VNC Developer. Aimed at the OEM market, VNC Developer provides channel partners the chance to bundle or integrate VNC Connect into their services. With the VNC Connect software development kit (SDK), organizations can add VNC Connect directly into the software build.
RealVNC offers a 30 Day free trial for interested clients. From there, the two annual subscription plans available are RealVNC Professional and Enterprise. The Professional plan gains capacity for three concurrent sessions, and the Enterprise plan allows for ten concurrent sessions with the Instant Support add-on. This fee is per technician per month, though we reflect the annual cost below.
|Plan||Annual Price||Instant Support|
Founded in Calabasas, California in 1995, parent company IDrive Inc. specializes in cloud storage, online backups, and remote access. In addition to its IBackup solutions, IDrive’s remote access software, RemotePC, is a solution that works across Windows, Macs, iOS, and Android devices.
RemotePC offers a range of plans that can meet individual up to SMB and enterprise needs. Starting with their base plan, Consumer, clients get secure remote access with file transfer, whiteboard, and videoconferencing technology. Add remote reboot, always-on configuration, and cloud-based access; RemotePC is an inexpensive solution for small teams looking for options. From there, the three upper-tier plans add up to 100 additional computers, unlimited user licenses, and valued features like Active Directory, IdP Sync, and the role and permission setting.
RemotePC offers four subscription packages with an add-on of their HelpDesk solution. From Consumer and SOHO to Team and Enterprise plans, RemotePC has flexible options for any size organization. For Team, Enterprise, and HelpDesk plans, potential clients can sign up for a seven-day free trial.
|Plan||1 Year||2 Year||Details|
|Consumer||$39.50||$79.00||Remote access solution for 1 user and 2 PCs|
|SOHO||$69.50||$139.00||Unlimited users and 10 computers|
|Team||$249.50||$499.00||Add: 50 computers, AD, SSO, IdP Sync|
|Enterprise||$499.50||$999.00||Add: 100 computers, PC and role grouping|
Founded in 2006, Splashtop specializes in remote desktop software and support solutions. The Silicon Valley-based vendor offers a range of plans aimed at SMBs, managed service providers, IT support and help desks, and educational institutions.
Starting with their Business Access subscription, Splashtop offers compatibility with Windows, Mac, iOS, Android, and Chromebook devices. Features include file transfer, remote printing, and session logging. Clients can upgrade Business Access to add features like user privilege management, remote wake and reboot, and SSO. With plans targeted at MSPs and IT help desks, Splashtop offers the highest number of computers, integrated Bitdefender endpoint security as an add-on, and concurrent technicians for an unlimited number of devices.
Each of Splashtop’s client segments offers a range of plans specifically tailored to the client’s business needs. Because of this wealth of pricing information available, we’ll stick to the highlights. Business Access plans range from $60 to $99 annually, with a discount opportunity on multi-year licenses. Plans for MSPs start at $479 annually for 25 computers and can go up to 12,000 computers for $31,199.
Hailing from southeast India, Zoho is a global software and cloud computing company. Since 1996, the tech vendor has added application after application to their widely integrated, cloud-based Zoho Office Suite. Zoho’s remote desktop SaaS is Zoho Assist, offering a remote access solution for individuals up to SMB and enterprise organizations.
Zoho Assist’s target consumers include outsourced IT and managed service provider support, customer support, and IT help desks. The base plan, Remote Support, offers one technician access to two concurrent remote sessions, multi-monitor functionality, Google contacts integration, and screen capture. Worthwhile additional features for higher tier subscriptions include mobile app compatibility for iOS and Android, session recording, and diagnostic tools.
For Zoho Assist, interested clients can try the software for a 15-day free trial. From there, clients can continue on a free plan or pick from five subscription plans. Zoho offers one of the best free plans, but users are naturally limited to one concurrent session and minimal features.
|Remote Support||$120||1 technician, 2 concurrent sessions|
|Professional||$180||1 technician, 4 concurrent sessions|
|Enterprise||$288||1 technician, 6 concurrent sessions|
|Unattended Access||$120||25 unattended computers|
|Unattended Access Professional||$180||Add advanced fleet features|