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Telepresence Options Magazine

Latest Telepresence and Visual Collaboration News:
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Facebook Is and Has Been Silently Listening to Everything You Say -- Here's How to Stop It

June 20, 2016 | Telepresence Options

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Story and images by The Free Thought Project

Recently, an expert has come out to claim that Facebook may be listening in on your conversations. Kelli Burns, a mass communication professor at the University of South Florida, believes the app might be using people's microphones to gather data on the content of people's conversations. 9

Facebook admits that the app is capable of listening to what's happening around it -- but claims the feature simply identifies what people are listening to or watching as means of conveniently posting about it.

When Microsoft, LinkedIn Rule Business Communications

June 17, 2016 | Telepresence Options

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Story and images by No Jitter

Microsoft and LinkedIn sure did shake things up and give us plenty to think about on the future of communications, collaboration, cloud services, customer relationship management, corporate directories, enterprise social networking... what did I forget? I left something out, no doubt, since I'm still trying to wrap my brain around all of the potential promise -- and implications -- of the announced merger.

I assume most of you know of what I speak, but let me be doubly certain: Microsoft greeted us on Monday morning with news that it is acquiring LinkedIn for $26.2 billion, or $196 per share -- an all-cash transaction. That's big money by anybody's estimate, but especially so considering it represents a hefty premium on the $131 share price at which LinkedIn was trading at Friday's closing bell. Microsoft apparently wanted LinkedIn bad, real bad.

Too many workers aren't wearing pants on video calls

June 11, 2016 | Telepresence Options

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Story and images by Quartz

Don't worry too much about how you look. Spend more time thinking about what you'll say and how you'll say it. But even so, put on some pants, perhaps.

Those are the conclusions reached by a Zogby Analytics survey seeking to understand why people don't like video conferencing, and how to improve it. Despite an increase in remote work and video conferencing, the survey found "that majority of working adults do not feel comfortable on camera," and plenty had gone to great lengths to avoid it.

RingCentral Hires Avaya, ShoreTel Vets, Debuts New Room Conferencing Service

June 11, 2016 | Telepresence Options

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Story and images by Channel Partners Online

RingCentral is targeting enterprise growth by launching new room video-conferencing services, expanding into new countries and hiring veteran industry talent.

RingCentral Rooms is a cloud-based video conferencing service aimed at taking on legacy hardware competitors like Cisco. It is compatible with off-the-shelf room cameras and is used with a visual app on an iPad. RingCentral Room Connector, available in July, enables any legacy room conferencing system to connect to other RingCentral Rooms or RingCentral Meetings participants on desktop or mobile devices.

Kramer introduces new control platform at InfoComm 2016

June 11, 2016 | Telepresence Options

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Story and images by eCampus News

Kramer has released Kramer Control, the company's new, comprehensive, cloud-based solution for control and analytics in any commercial Pro AV environment. The solution is currently being showcased at InfoComm 2016 in Las Vegas in C Hall, Booth C6825

Kramer Control lets users seamlessly navigate to any room in an organization and easily control AV systems, infrastructures and devices, including Kramer wireless collaboration products, audio products and systems, thermostats, HVAC, lights, shades, alarms, security, video conferencing, and more at a fraction of the time and cost.

Logitech Collaboration Program Adds 15 Technology Partners

June 11, 2016 | Telepresence Options

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Story and images by Channel Partners Online

The Logitech Collaboration Program (LCP) has added 15 new technology partners, including a number of well-known video collaboration providers.

The enhanced program includes cloud video-conferencing partner and complementary technology-partner tracks; and two tiers: premier partner and integration partner. It offers access to the Logitech Software Reference Kit, which provides APIs to integrate Windows, Mac OS X and Linux apps with Logitech audio and video devices.

New Huddle Room Package Eases Real-Time Videoconferencing Collaboration

June 10, 2016 | Telepresence Options

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Story and images by Michael Hart / The Journal

Altia Systems has introduced a new "huddle room solution" that aims to provide the technology to make communication between teachers and students in remote locations easier.

The PanaCast 2 Huddle Room Solution allows the smooth communication from a remote location that its developers say make collaboration more effective and productive -- and, with a starting price under $1,500, more cost-effective. With a camera that creates a 180-degree wide and 54-degree tall field of view, it is designed to solve some of the problems with real-time video and web collaboration such as narrow field of view, low resolution and slow mechanical operation.

Synergy Sky Announces Offering for Enterprise VNOCs

June 10, 2016 | Telepresence Options

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Story and images by Synergy SKY

OSLO, Norway, June 8th, 2016 - Synergy SKY Video Conferencing management platform for reporting, monitoring and scheduling to become available to the enterprise market with new enhanced features, competitive pricing structure and new partner model.

"What gets measured gets managed"

Polycom gets revised bid from private equity firm

June 8, 2016 | Telepresence Options

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Story and images by Reuters

Polycom Inc (PLCM.O) said it received a revised offer from a private equity firm - the third time the bidder has revised its offer since the video conferencing equipment maker agreed to be acquired by Canada's Mitel Networks Corp (MNW.TO).

Polycom's shares rose about 2.5 percent to the new offer price of $12.25 in light premarket trading on Wednesday.

Jeff Rodman and his team helped bring people closer

June 6, 2016 | Telepresence Options

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Jeff Rodman felt a twinge of sadness when he learned that Polycom Inc., the company he and Brian Hinman co-founded in a San Francisco basement back in 1990, was going to be acquired later this year by Ottawa, Canada-based Mitel.

"People would stop just short of putting their arm around my shoulder and saying, 'Jeff, here, you can cry on me,'" Rodman says with a chuckle. "I will admit when I first heard of this, I didn't know that much about Mitel. I thought, 'Great, we're being sold to a telephone company.'"

Pexip's Infinity meeting platform now on Azure cloud

June 5, 2016 | Telepresence Options

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Story and images by InAvate

Pexip has announced that its Infinity meeting and interoperability platform now features support for Microsoft's Azure cloud platform, in addition to 25 other updates.

The software-based Infinity platform provides communication and collaboration tools to businesses.

Polycom Receives Revised Offer From Second Potential Buyer

May 24, 2016 | Telepresence Options

Polycom Inc., which had agreed to be bought out by Canadian telecommunications company Mitel Networks Corp. , on Monday disclosed a revised offer from a second buyer that could derail the nearly $2 billion Mitel deal.

Shares of Polycom, down 17% over the past 12 months, rose 4% to $11.56 in after-hours trading.

Under the terms of the revised offer, which Polycom said may constitute a "superior" or financially more favorable proposal for Polycom shareholders, the unidentified private-equity firm presented two plans: an $11-a-share cash dividend, or the choice to trade the dividend for a new convertible preferred stock; or a "take private" deal of $11.50-a-share in cash with a contingent of up to $3 a share.

In both cases, Polycom said, the cash dividend, existing debt and the $60 million termination fee to Mitel would be paid using proceeds from the sale of preferred stock, $870 million in new debt and available cash.

GenieCast Offering 800+ Speakers Over Videoconferencing

May 12, 2016 | Telepresence Options

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Geniecast, a startup in two-way business videoconferencing events, is on a growth curve at the historic 555 Washington Avenue building in downtown St. Louis.

The company has 17 employees but occupies enough space -- nearly 13,000 square feet on the building's fourth floor -- to accommodate many more workers. Company leaders expect the headcount to grow to several hundred within two to three years.

Geniecast touts itself as the world's largest online marketplace of thought leaders, speakers, experts and consultants available on live, two-way videocast. The company refers to its approximately 800 speakers as "Genies" expert in customer service, business best practices, leadership or other trending industry topics.

Video Conferencing Analytics Firm Vyopta Adds Another $1M to their Previous $5M Round

May 11, 2016 | Telepresence Options

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Austin--Vyopta, which provides a video conferencing system dashboard for businesses, said Wednesday it has added $1 million to a $5 million funding round it announced in February.

AVX Partners, the company's investor in the previous round, is putting up the additional $1 million. Allison Smith, a spokeswoman for the company, said Vyopta decided to take the additional funding last month after receiving interest from other investors following the February announcement.

"Ultimately, we accepted the additional $1 million from the same partners (AVX) and under the exact same terms (valuation, etc.) as the additional $5 million so officially it will be listed as a part of the same round," she wrote in an e-mail.

Why Videoconferencing? Thanks to the TSA, almost 7,000 passengers missed their flights in just one week on just one airline!

May 9, 2016 | Telepresence Options

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And in other news, the TSA continues to suck.

It isn't even summer yet, and major problems with longer and longer TSA screening times are happening at major airports across the nation, including Seattle, Chicago, Atlanta, Charlotte, Minneapolis/St. Paul, and San Jose just to name a few. During Spring Break (March 14-20) this year alone, an estimated 6,800 airline passengers missed their flights due to TSA screening delays on American Airlines -- just American Airlines.

Who knows how many people in total -- mostly innocent Americans who bought a ticket to ride on a plane simply because they want to travel quickly from one place to another -- missed their flights that week in this country. Or how many miss a flight in total on a daily basis thanks to TSA. The number would probably shock us all... or not. (It is the TSA we're talking about.)

H.I.G Capital, a private equity firm, completes acquisition of AVI-SPL

May 9, 2016 | Telepresence Options

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H.I.G. Capital, a global private equity investment firm with $19 billion of equity capital under management, has acquired AVI-SPL through an affiliate.

AVI-SPL is an end-to-end provider of AV and collaboration solutions for organisations of all types around the world. The H.I.G. deal positions the integrator for opportunities in the growing collaboration solutions markets and helps them meet the demands of enterprise clients seeking global standards and delivery platforms.

Headquartered in Tampa, Florida, AVI-SPL has 1,500 employees throughout 35 locations worldwide, with 29 offices in the US and six internationally (Canada, UK and UAE). The company's extensive office footprint has supported the completion of over 35,000 AV and video collaboration deployments since 2008 in over 101 countries. A diverse array of clients rely on AVI-SPL to design, engineer and integrate increasingly complex collaboration solutions and to support their systems with maintenance, on-site staff and cloud-based managed services.

Richard Stokes, a managing director at H.I.G. Capital, commented: "AVI-SPL is the established market leader in the AV systems and collaboration solutions market and we look forward to supporting the continued expansion of the company's service offering and geographic footprint."

What's Driving Mitel's $2B Polycom Acquisition?

April 26, 2016 | Howard Lichtman

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Scale, partnerships and innovation are three main motivations for Mitel's recently announced $1.96 billion acquisition of Polycom. But it won't be easy making the combined operation successful.

The two companies earlier this month announced plans to combine to create a business with combined expected annual revenue of about $2.5 billion, specializing in cloud and on-premises video, calling and collaboration. Mitel Networks Corp. sells cloud-based on-premises PBX and hybrid voice and unified communications systems to enterprises and communications service providers.

Polycom Inc. (Nasdaq: PLCM) is a video-conferencing systems vendor, which will retain its brand. The combined company will be based in Ottawa, Canada, where Mitel is currently headquartered, and have about 7,700 staff, run by Mitel CEO Rich McBee. (See Mitel to Buy Polycom for $1.96B.)

Mitel's 2015 revenue was $1.16 billion with an operating loss of $10.2 million, while Polycom reported $1.27 billion revenue and an operating profit of $86.1 million.

Continue reading...

Exertis targets SME market with Yealink's video conferencing solutions

April 25, 2016 | Telepresence Options

Yealink_VC400.jpgExertis has announced the distribution of Yealink's video conferencing (VC) series, designed specifically for the SME market.

The Yealink VC range of products are an exciting opportunity for resellers to offer a truly cost effective, enterprise-grade video conferencing solution without high costs or advanced technical expertise, said the distie.

Yealink offers ease-of-use, plug and play video solutions that are affordable and profitable for the channel.

"Yealink delivers a friendly UI with easy-to-use buttons allowing almost all operations to be carried out in just three simple steps," said Michael Thompson, Exertis UC business manager.

Imago ScanSource Launches i-Kandy Video Conferencing System

April 19, 2016 | Telepresence Options

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Immersive telepresence at a video conferencing price

Imago's i-Kandy Bundle Combines Polycom's Group 500 Series

and the Array Telepresence Equal-i Imaging System

London, 19 April 2016. Imago ScanSource, Europe's largest video solutions company, is launching a brand new video conferencing system, i-Kandy, bringing together two powerful products from the industry's leading players Polycom and Array Telepresence.

i-Kandy combines the Array Equal-i image processor and DX dual-headed camera with the Polycom Group 500 video, voice and collaboration system. This unique new offering will provide customers with a cutting edge immersive telepresence experience that maximises all the power of the Polycom engine with the transformative impact of the Array image technology.

Imago ScanSource is offering its reseller channel the opportunity to become authorised partners for i-Kandy, which will enable them to take advantage of the available training programmes, secure improved margins and deliver installation services to customers. Imago ScanSource is also currently providing a 2-for-1 offer on i-Kandy for a limited period.

Wainhouse Research News in Brief - April 12th 2016

April 13, 2016 | Telepresence Options

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Story and images by Alan D. Greenberg / Wainhouse Research

Fuze and Yealink have teamed to certify the Yealink VC120 video conferencing room system as compatible with Fuze conferencing and collaboration solutions. Though it offers its own Fuze Room, this will enable any organization seeking the VC120 capabilities (1080P HD video, dual-screen support, and content sharing) to allow their Mac or PC users to access Fuze's video service, leveraging the Yealink VC120 from the organization's meeting room.

Sonic Foundry has joined the Riverbed-Ready Technology Alliance program to bring new capabilities to both Sonic Foundry and Riverbed customers. The program framework enables partners to extend the Riverbed Application Performance Platform, a platform that provides CIOs visibility into all IT resources across a hybrid enterprise. Though not the first vendor in our space to partner with Riverbed, this should help SoFo tackle the challenges of delivering behind-the-firewall, well-scaled and secure video.

Embrace Video

September 2, 2014 | Telepresence Options

Shaping a new SMART

September 17, 2013 | Telepresence Options

Focus on the Future

March 2, 2012 | Hogan Keyser

First Look: Cisco Cius

February 13, 2012 | Hogan Keyser

Eye Ball

January 2, 2012 | Hogan Keyser

iPad face, robot body

December 5, 2011 | Hogan Keyser

3D Research and Application

September 30, 2011 | Hogan Keyser

Polycom Acquires Accordent

March 24, 2011 | 

Low-cost Video Chat Robot

February 11, 2011 | Kendal Kirby

New BlackBerry PlayBook

September 29, 2010 | Chris Payatagool

DiData UK Buys Mvision

September 17, 2010 | Howard Lichtman

In The Picture

April 12, 2010 | Howard Lichtman