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Kinder, Gentler, Wireless Video

Tired? Irritable? Short with your colleagues on the phone?

Well, the new WLAN-enabled video telephony system hardware and software bundle from Avaya Inc. (NYSE: AV) and Polycom Inc. could make you a kinder, gentler corporate netizen.

"You're less likely to treat people a certain way if you can actually see them," claims Greg Brophy, a senior product manager at Avaya for "Collaboration." He sees the technology being used for video conferencing and other intra-office applications.

So, how does it work? Well, the user plugs a Polycom USB camera into a desktop or laptop computer, and the QOS capabilities built into Avaya's Softphone application will prioritize video traffic on a WiFi network. This works much the same for video as it does for voice-over-WLAN systems, according to Avaya (see Voice Over 802.11: Talkin' Loud; Sayin' Something? ).

Of course, suddenly being able to see your colleagues as you interact with them could prove to be a two-edged sword. You may not wish to see the leftover pizza that Bert from IT is chomping down on for breakfast as you log-in for your Monday meeting.

Or have to quickly scramble for some covering when you are caught by surprise "working from home."

— Dan Jones, Site Editor, Unstrung

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