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Blue Jeans Network Undercuts Cisco Video Pricing

March 29, 2012 | Hogan Keyser
Blue_Jeans_Network_Data_Collaboration.jpgBlue Jeans Network Undercuts Cisco Video PricingCloud videoconferencing provider offers a monthly per-port service. What does it mean for Cisco and Polycom?

March 29, 2012 by Robert Mullins via InformationWeek.com
-- Blue Jeans Network, which offers videoconferencing in the cloud, has introduced a new pricing model intended as a direct broadside to expensive systems from vendors such as Cisco Systems and Polycom. It will now offer its service at a rate of $299 per port, per month, which should be dramatically less expensive that those competitors that sell customers a multipoint control unit (MCU) to install and maintain on the customers' premises. In fact, Blue Jeans calls its strategy an "MCU Killer."

An MCU can cost hundreds of thousands of dollars to buy and just as much to also manage and maintain, but the total cost of ownership (TCO) of a "virtual MCU" from Blue Jeans can be anywhere from 65% to 90% percent less over three years than the physical MCU, said Stu Aaron, chief commercial officer for Blue Jeans.

The Blue Jeans Network service enables users to hold a videoconference in the cloud, allowing participants to connect any number of ways, including via Skype, Google Talk, or other cloud videoconference services and even from Cisco or Polycom systems. Users can also connect from any number of devices, including desktops, laptops, smartphones, or tablets. The Blue Jeans pitch is that it makes videoconferencing as easy to do as audioconferencing.

"Customers were telling us, 'We love Blue Jeans,'" Aaron said. "But not every customer was looking at this directly as an audioconference replacement. There was a large class of our customers that were seeing Blue Jeans as an MCU replacement."

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