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Remote Access App Comparison: TeamViewer vs. GoToMyPC using Excel

November 25, 2014

Both GoToMyPC and TeamViewer come highly recommended and are used for personal and commercial purposes alike. To compare their basic features, we’ll be using an iPad2 with iOS 7.1.1. to access a spreadsheet on a remote PC, namely an HP Pavilion DV6700 with a Windows 7 Home Premium, 32-bit operating system.


Before opening the app on the tablet, Citrix requires the GoToMyPC software to be installed on the PC. With a mere 11.5MB size on disk, it shouldn’t be much of a hassle. It takes a few seconds to download and install, and from then on, an account needs to be set up. A password and an access code are required for safety purposes, as well as a nickname for the host PC. From this point on, the app can be used at leisure. With the TeamViewer 10, it takes even less to download the 7.46 MB software on a laptop, and the TeamViewer app version 8.0.10338 CL is just as quick to install on an iPad.

TeamViewer vs. GoToMyPC for iPad remote access using Excel


To access the file on the remote PC using the GoToMyPC route, the app must be opened on the tablet and the PC’s nickname must be selected from a list. Pressing the ‘Connect’ button establishes an instantaneous connection with the computer or laptop. Within seconds, the remote PC’s desktop is available on the tablet, and searching for the file is a matter of tapping and clicking through folders. Instructions on how to tap, pinch, toggle, etc. are available as soon as the remote desktop is visible, but it is fairly simple to navigate by tapping instinctively.

With TeamViewer, on the other hand, you can create an account either on the PC or the tablet. Both devices must have the latest version of TeamViewer or compatible versions installed. Once the remote PC is selected, it provides instant access. Instructions are displayed on the entire screen in large fonts and deep contrast. Navigating is very simple even with only tapping and double-taping (left-right mouse clicks).


With the GoToMyPC app, the user can double-click the document and start editing straight away. The same applies to Teamviewer, but the responsiveness of the app is noticeably better, and folders and files open in a flash. TeamViewer also has more clarity and larger, more user-friendly controls.


Exiting GoToMyPC is slightly easier, though, with a clear, dedicated button to the upper left-hand side, whereas Teamviewer’s collapsible exit menu is a bit more fidgety.
When using GoToMyPC, scrolling through the document can only be done by hovering over the scroll until a mouse hologram appears, at which point the cursor is also visible about 1cm above it. Because you can only scroll when you tap and drag this mouse or use touchscreen gestures, scrolling is slightly uncomfortable. Teamviewer, by contrast, allows the user to tap on the Up/Down arrows and scroll effortlessly.


Editing is fairly simple with both apps, as it only requires tapping on a cell (in a spreadsheet) and then opening the tablet keyboard. With GoToMyPC, the controls are on top, while with TeamViewer, they are at the bottom and they are collapsible. The keyboard seems to be slightly easier to use with TeamViewer and it doesn’t interfere as much with the desktop content. It also takes a bit more to enter and delete values in a cell with GoToMyPC than it does with TeamViewer, which renders text entered with the latter more accurate.

Exiting GoToMyPC is slightly easier, though, with a clear, dedicated button to the upper left-hand side, whereas Teamviewer’s collapsible exit menu is a bit more fidgety.

All in all, both apps are fairly decent remote control tools, and they can help you do some quick spreadsheet editing on the go. While GoToMyPC is more attractive, with a stylish interface, discreet hints, brilliant security features and an all-round great remote personal file manager, TeamViewer is faster, larger and more appealing to those who are looking for a reliable but no-frills kind of service. For that reason, I would choose GoToMyPC for personal use and TeamViewer for professional use.