This review offers an overview of the basic characteristics of in vivo embryo technologies, their current status, the main findings and the advances gained in recent years, and the outstanding subjects for increasing their efficiency. The use of superovulation and embryo transfer procedures remains affected by a high variability in the ovulatory response to hormonal treatment and by a low and variable number of transferable embryos and offspring obtained. This variability has been classically identified with both extrinsic (source, purity of gonadotrophins and protocol of administration) and intrinsic factors (breed, age, nutrition and reproductive status), which are reviewed in this paper. However, emerging data indicate that the main causes of variability are related to endocrine and ovarian factors, and so the number of studies and procedures addressing a better understanding and control of these factors may be increased in the future. The accomplishment of this objective, the improvement of procedures for embryo conservation and for the selection and management of recipient females, will allow further development and application of this technology.