New Report Documents Advances in Replicating In-Person Meeting Experience
Sep 13, 2005 9:45 AM
Emerging technologies are driving a new wave of videoconferencing solutions capable of enhancing the traditional visual collaboration experience, concludes a new report, "Emerging Technologies for Teleconferencing and Telepresence," prepared by Ira M. Weinstein, a senior analyst at Wainhouse Research.
According to the report, technological innovations that foster eye contact, improve audio/video quality, and enhance multi-location video meetings offer the potential to increase business productivity and overcome a weakness of traditional videoconferencing systems: They often fail to provide a natural and comfortable meeting experience for the participants.
Teliris, which offers GlobalTable, a fully managed life-like videoconferencing service, currently leads the integrated tele-presence solution industry in terms of systems installed and orders-in-hand, according to Wainhouse Research. "With 50-plus systems already installed and under management, and a $15 million backlog of pending orders and long-term contracts, Teliris appears to be the current commercial leader in this market space."
The report explains that tele-presence vendors attribute cost savings and productivity gains to an improved executive experience with visual collaboration systems and, consequently, an increased willingness to rely on these solutions. Supporting this rationale, the white paper notes that Teliris reports utilization of its GlobalTable system at approximately 60 hours per month, whereas the comparable level for traditional videoconferencing solutions is just 10 to 15 hours per month. "Obviously, if the systems are used more often, additional travel savings occur and decisions are made faster," explains Robert Warshaw, CEO of Teliris.
"Global competitive pressures are encouraging companies to operate with distributed work groups," Warshaw adds. "We have found that using the GlobalTable system becomes a vitally important, culturally ingrained behavior within an organization. It truly creates the ability to walk down the corridor and meet with anyone else in the company, no matter where he or she is located."
A critical issue with traditional videoconferencing solutions, according to the report, is the ability to effectively link together more than two sites. Many systems employ a single video display per room. In these cases, screen space is subdivided into a matrix of small images, diminishing the life-like quality of the meeting. Some vendors have addressed the problem with a multi-screen configuration. The report notes that Teliris' innovative multi-screen, virtual vectoring approach distributes the images from remote locations over multiple displays and effectively orients eye sightlines in a way that makes each remote participant appear to be looking at the individual speaking. "The result is a multi-site meeting experience that more closely resembles an in-person experience," according to Wainhouse Research.
"We are pleased to see independent research that validates the uniqueness of our proprietary virtual vectoring technology," Warshaw says. "High-quality systems that closely replicate an in-person experience can have an enormously positive impact on productivity."
"The emergence of centralized management systems and managed service provider offerings has given enterprises much-needed options for managing their global conferencing environments," the report concludes. "There are many reasons to be optimistic about the future of visual collaboration in the enterprise."