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HP Offers Industry Leading Audio with New Enhancements for HP Halo Telepresence Solutions

March 31, 2009 | Chris Payatagool

HP_Halo_MeetingRoom_SM.jpgORLANDO, Fla., March 31, 2009 - HP today announced at VoiceCon 2009 audio enhancements to the HP Halo Telepresence Solutions portfolio as well as an extended seating option that enables unparalleled collaboration and provides customers with greater flexibility and choice in selecting options that suit their specific communication needs . These additions reinforce HP's commitment, through its managed service offerings, to consistently deliver the most comprehensive collaboration experiences to HP Halo customers that enable them to receive even greater return on their communication investments.

"In the current economy, our customers are looking for ways to drive additional value from their IT investments and with industry-leading functionality and design innovation, such as those announced today, HP is continuing to provide unique and cost effective services that push collaboration forward" said Ken Crangle, vice president and general manager, HP Halo Telepresence Solutions. "With HP Halo, customers can rest assured HP will continue to innovate and provide the most robust collaboration experiences that drive higher usage rates and take productivity to the next level."

A new extended seating option provides HP Halo Collaboration Studio customers with the option of adding a meticulously designed row of seating towards the back of the room, nearly doubling the number of participants that can easily join a collaborative session. Through extensive innovation and design work, HP has figured out how to add this seating so that all of the attendees in the second row can easily see, be seen, hear and be heard just like participants sitting in the front row.  

With this extended seating option, seating geometry is carefully choreographed to allow second row participants to have an unobstructed view of the people and collaboration screens in the front of the room. Seating is customized to provide comfort during long meetings and colors and textures blend naturally into the existing HP Halo environment.

Additionally, as part of the extended seating option, audio advancements ensure an exceptional collaboration experience. Precise microphone placement enables participants in the second row to speak and clearly be heard in a rich, natural and unobtrusive way. The audio volume has been carefully calibrated so that when attendees speak, the sound simulates the experience of people sitting a bit further away from the table, keeping with HP Halo's same-room experience. This advancement is enabled by HP Halo's spatial audio system that allows sound to come from the speaker that correlates with each participant's position at the table.

Additionally, as part of the HP Halo Telepresence Service, HP will also provide ongoing calibration for these audio components to ensure the best sound possible at all times. HP is the only company to offer this type of calibrated audio functionality for second row seating that helps customers extend their existing telepresence investments and ensures that there are no second class citizens during virtual meetings.

Development of the extended seating option stems from customer requests for configurations that will enable more people to comfortably collaborate in an HP Halo session while, at the same time, benefiting from the exceptional audio and video qualities currently experienced by HP Halo meeting participants sitting in the front row.

"Since HP Halo's inception, social science has been a critical component for guiding the development of both endpoint configurations and enhancements," said Mark Gorzynski, HP Halo chief scientist. "We employ a specific user testing methodology - examining everything from video choreography to audio experiences, textures and shapes to seat positions and height for comfort - to innovate for our customers and offer features that ensure the best video collaboration experience available in the market today."

HP Halo is also introducing a second audio advancement, HP Halo Presentation Audio. This new functionality works alongside HP Halo's full motion video capability to allow customers to share a variety of multimedia materials - such as DVDs or audio within presentations - in full stereo sound, for all meeting participants in every location. This feature allows HP Halo participants to collaborate more fully - from sharing a broadcast advertising campaign to a recently recorded industry podcast - in real-time across various geographies.  With the rise of social media and video as primary tools for communications, HP expects that more customers will use audio and video even more within meetings to convey messages, making this feature exceptionally valuable for meeting participants. This update will be rolled out to all HP Halo endpoint customers at no extra charge as part of the HP Halo's Technology Refresh (1) offering, a component of the HP Halo Telepresence Service.

The HP Halo Telepresence Service is one managed service offering available to customers under the HP Halo Managed Services umbrella. With HP Halo Managed Services, telepresence and standards-based video conferencing customers can focus completely on using their video assets to achieve faster business results while HP manages the day-to-day operations. In turn, this increases customers' productivity and decreases the need for travel. HP Halo Managed Services also remove the need for troublesome bandwidth scheduling requirements or costly network upgrades often required by other systems.

About HP

HP, the world's largest technology company, simplifies the technology experience for consumers and businesses with a portfolio that spans printing, personal computing, software, services and IT infrastructure. More information about HP (NYSE: HPQ) is available at http://www.hp.com/.

Note to editors: More news from HP, including links to RSS feeds, is available at http://www.hp.com/hpinfo/newsroom/.









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