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I've worked with a remote dev team for 5 years as a product manager working in the office. The team-level collaboration was probably better than in many office environments I've worked since.

This was circa 2005, so as you can imagine the tools weren't quite as well developed as they are today. This meant that everyone had to make sure they communicated extra well. Rule of the road was that you were available on IM same time as office hours, you announced coming and going with an email to a shared distro list, etc. No rocket science.

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