On the BBC news last night, I saw a brief extract of what was supposed to be online tutoring. It all looked quite slick in terms of the quality of the picture and the tutor seemed empathetic but it seemed to be an example of the constraints of using a tool that provides a webcam of the tutor rather than a Whiteboard as in Adobe Connect. The tutor held up a piece of paper that had a sentence on and asked the school pupil what mistakes there were (some words that should have been in capitals were in lower case). She had to check the learner could see and it probably was not very clear. With Adobe Connect, this can be put on the whiteboard, which would be clearer. She then asked the learner how to correct it. Again Adobe Connect might look less slick but would have the affordance of allowing the learner to be able to correct it themselves by using the "draw" tool.
It seems worrying that money is being spent on online tutoring tools that seem superficially "modern" but a less spectacular looking platform like Adobe Connect (or OU Live and Elluminate - previous OU tools) would be better in terms of pedagogy and allowing learners to do more themselves.