Filestage.io, a German company founded in 2015, aims for a smooth and easy-to-apply review process. Your clients and co-workers can easily review and approve docs, videos, images and designs with nothing but a browser. No sign-up required. Sounds good to me, let’s check it out!
There are a ton of review and collaboration tools out there, sure. But in 2015, when Filestage.io was starting out, there wasn’t anything like it. The three founders have a strong marketing and agency-work background and reviewing was part of their daily routine. The development of an easy-to-use tool is their take on an intuitive and streamlined review process.
Being media and marketing professionals ourselves, we ran into the problem of managing client reviews on an everyday basis. We tried a bunch of solutions like Dropbox, Vimeo, and email, but nothing seemed to work for us. As much as we loved our work, managing client reviews was stressful.
Filestage.io was born. It helps you and your clients to conveniently review videos, PDFs, audio files and images without bouncing emails back and forth all the time.
The good thing is that nobody of your clients and co-workers needs to sign up in order to review a given video or PDF. Just send them a link and they are in. This might sound like a minor thing but in reality it’s anything but! I think it’s super annoying to sign up for each and every little service/app/website out there. I just don’t want to do it all the time for things I, as a client, might need once or twice a month.
Filestage.io lives completely in the cloud, your browser therefore becomes the user interface. You just need that aforementioned link and you’re good to go. Check out their teaser video below:
When a certain project is near completion and therefore enters reviewing stage, it’s time to invite some clients and relevant co-workers to have a look at the result. Send them over a link so they can add remarks and comments.
For each invitation link several options are available: Do you want the reviewer allow to download the file? Do you want to add encryption (256-bit SSL) or password protection? You even can enable/disable commenting, so the given reviewer can only watch but not comment. Invitation links can also be pasted directly into other collaboration tools such as Trello, Slack or Basecamp. No emails needed here.
Everybody on the team can click directly on something that needs attention and elaborate further on the issue in the comments. Files can be attached to comments and all changes can be traced back via a versioning system. All changes are happening in real-time so you know exactly what’s going on.
Once everybody on the team is happy with a given file and approves it, the file is marked as “approved” and therefore gets the green light. Pending files are marked accordingly, so you get a really nice overview of which files need some TLC. Clients can scribble directly on the given image/video to draw your attention to exactly where it is needed. This is certainly more intuitive than describing what your concern is with a particular aspect of the image/soundtrack/video.
Since the whole filestage.io “app” lives in the cloud you don’t need anything special. A laptop with a decent internet connection and a browser will do. Even mobile phones or tablets are up to the task. Some reviewing of the latest edits while waiting for the train to arrive? Sure, go ahead! The simplicity of Filestage.io is really a plus for the service, no complicated sign-up routines, no excessive menus, tools and features. Just the right stuff you really need in order get the job done on a daily basis.
Filestage.io is not exactly cheap but if you’re repeatently need your clients / co-workers to review certain pieces of your work, this service might come in handy. If paid yearly, this subscription-based service starts at $89 / month. This tier includes 5 team members, 150 files in total and 100GB worth of cloud storage.
If you need more, the “Agency” plan might be the one to go for: 15 team members, 450 files and 300GB worth of storage for $179 / month. Regardless of the tier you choose, you always can customize the look of your reviewing portal using your own logo. So clients know where they are on first sight.
To me, Filestage.io is a cool-looking alternative to some other collaboration apps with a slightly different approach. Frame.io, for example, might be too complicated for easy reviewing tasks (yet it is certainly more powerful when it come to video collaboration with tight NLE integrations). Filestage.io is more about single files rather than full-blown edits, I think. And for that task it really looks like a convenient way to tackle the review process in style. Well done!
Do you use reviewing tools in your workflow? Share your thoughts on this service in the comments below!