Video Conferencing – The Economic Solution for the 21st Century
To thrive in today’s uncertain economy, you have to collaborate with colleagues, partners, and customers around the globe at a moment’s notice. At the same time, you want to conduct your business in a way that enhances the quality of your relationships. Video conferencing tools can help your company respond quickly to customer demand, solve customer support issues, react to market opportunities, and battle competitive threats.
Many organisations that are using video communications to make better, timely decisions and track projects more closely are able to stay on top of their market. As of today, teleconferencing between offices and colleagues is an easy way of communications within a business even through the individuals may be located several thousands of miles between each other. It goes without saying that travel has become an unbearably inconvenience. Video conferencing allows organizations to expand their global reach without having to overburden their employees with excessive business travel and can give a company a competitive advantage.
No new technology develops smoothly, and video conferencing had more than its share of bumps along the way. The first uses of video conferencing go back to the days of the space program and when television networks would use satellites to transmit video and sound between locations. While effective, the price of such transmissions was costly even in those days. Consumer-based video conference equipment didn’t obtain any major success until broadband internet access became available in the United States and in areas around the world.
Today, there are several reasons why videoconferencing will enter the mainstream as the PC, smartphones and other forms of technology have. With the constant advances in video conferencing systems, it seems obvious that the technology will continue to evolve and become an integral part of business and personal life.
Whether you are new to video conferencing or are looking to upgrade your current solution, you have probably come across the term ‘telepresence’ in your research. Telepresence is a groundbreaking telecommunications offering which is setting new standards for visual collaboration. The major difference between telepresence and video conferencing is the cost of the equipment, the number of users involved in the meeting and the quality of the sound and video.
Telepresence is really videoconferencing and always has been. The telepresence experience has taken videoconferencing back to its roots, with a focus on proper lighting, sound, room layout, etc. The new systems, whether single-codec or multi-codec, deliver the audio-video experience that people have always wanted from their videoconferencing systems. It allows business professionals to interact via high quality video imaging and crystal clear audio from multiple locations. This effect is created by a close configuration of large screen video monitors, hidden high-definition cameras strategically placed to create the appearance of direct eye contact. All the participant has to do is walk into the room, and a life-like meeting between participants across the U.S. or the globe can begin.
From the desktop to the boardroom, the “Telepresence Revolution” will take your business into the 21st century of communications.
Installed Room Systems – Conference rooms where the video conferencing is to take place, or the application itself, requires that a system be custom designed into the facilities. These are known as installed systems, or custom systems. Executive boardrooms and classrooms are classic examples where such systems may be preferred. The “codec” for the system is separate from the camera and microphones so that it can be built into the cabinets of the room, and cameras and microphones can be placed strategically around the room for maximum impact. This option makes you feel as if you’re in the same room. The system, table, personal touch collaboration display and ceiling-mounted studio lighting add to the ultimate meeting experience.
Personal or Desktop Systems – The resolution of the newer desktop video system is pretty remarkable. And so, you can in fact get pretty big images on the screen that are quite good, and you can also shrink them down. There are options for you to format your own screen and all your employees can have always-on, always-available video, with familiar tools and business-quality performance. Video conferencing at the desktop has also reached a critical juncture of acceptance as it has revolutionized personal telepresence with professional, conference-room quality at a lower cost and a great ease-of-use interface and unmatched collaboration. See every corner of your business, from your desk. Streamline your desk and your communication with one PC screen, video and phone design. Collaborate as if you’re in the same room by moving seamlessly between sharing a presentation, CAD Drawing, prototype or even a sketch. By extending telepresence to the desktop, everyone is within reach instantly and there is no need to reserve your conference room.
The market for this type of product is gaining momentum and you can expect more businesses to use this technologyas an economic solution in the future. Employees whose companies have adopted videoconferencing and telepresence solutions are seeing a better work life balance and less ‘dead time’. In today’s economy and competitive business environment, companies are highly concerned with improving collaboration, reducing travel costs, and cutting down on carbon dioxide emissions.
Jamie Wood, Avatel EVP
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