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^Eagle^ 12/5/2012 | 2:58:06 PM
re: Nortel Trumps Cisco? Numinary,

what counts is the speed of the network connection. There is NOTHING magical or breakthrough in Cisco's version or application or platform that others could not do. In fact such performance has been available for many many years if the end to end network connection is fast enough. Cisco simply took advantage of those fast end to end connections being more available. But the Cisco "box" or platform is nothing revolutionary or breakthrough.

do not believe all the hype..

sigint 12/5/2012 | 2:58:06 PM
re: Nortel Trumps Cisco? there is NOTHING revolutionary or breakthrough in this product.

I share you skepticism, but to give the devil its due; I have used this system, and it does seem and feel far more "natural" compared to anything I have seen before. (I haven't seen Nortel's setup, so can't comment on it).

Technology apart, I guess some work must have gone into figuring out how to make the human experience seem natural. There was a time when AT&T would study psycho-acoustic effect and such. In this age of telecom penury, I'm glad someone's till looking at such things.
everythingip 12/5/2012 | 2:58:05 PM
re: Nortel Trumps Cisco? I attended a meeting at Cisco a few weeks ago and it was done via Telepresences at the Cisco Office, I was quite impress by the multipoint session, they were 3 locations east & west coasts,and india. I haven't seen the Nortel or HP versions of this type of video conferencing however I must admit Cisco has done well with this. They also mentioned they planned on rolling out Telepresence to a majority of the Cisco office locations.
ron202 12/5/2012 | 2:58:02 PM
re: Nortel Trumps Cisco? Sailboat and others,
Thank you for the interest on my posting. I hope that the discussion here is driven by the technological aspects of products not by the idea "I hate Cisco no matter what"

First the term telepresence - was intorduced in the scientific community around 1980 not by Cisco.
For people interested in more details "3D Video Communications " ISBN-13 978-0-470-02271-9.
Read thru the chapter "Immersive Videoconferencing" . You'll realize that Cisco implemented what is called in scientific community "shared table concept".
There are quite a few of technical challenges to implement a telepresence system .

Not familiar with Nortel or HP systems - probably they are also impressive . It is good that there will be competition in this area - the price will eventually come down.

I don't want to go in any implementation details but I can assure that is not so simple like "putting together a few off the shelf components". It is a technical challenge and Cisco developed the system in house (no , I don't have this info from Cisco marketing or sales).

whyiswhy 12/5/2012 | 2:58:02 PM
re: Nortel Trumps Cisco? Oooohhh, it wuz slupericious good, I got da bumps usin it! Rocked my world!

Good God, uber-over-priced hardware hyped to the max! And Cisco marketing and PR types too.


ron202 12/5/2012 | 2:58:01 PM
re: Nortel Trumps Cisco? well said whyiswhy.
have the same feelings about iPhone!
(yet the damm thing - iPhone- looks good in rest nothing revolutionary ...)

Has anybody any idea how Nortel and HP are pricewise vs Cisco?
JohnConn3 12/5/2012 | 2:57:55 PM
re: Nortel Trumps Cisco? Hello Ray,

I work for Cisco and am in direct involvement with our Telepresence product. I would be very happy to arrange for you to have a demo and talk to our Product Marketing people about the advantages of Cisco Telepresence. I would rather not put my contact information on a public message board. What is the best way to contact you?
trzwuip 12/5/2012 | 2:57:55 PM
re: Nortel Trumps Cisco? You will need a T1/E1 connection which lighreading has plenty of laying around.
prs6str 12/5/2012 | 2:57:52 PM
re: Nortel Trumps Cisco? This isn't about technology. If an executive feels they can have an in-person like experience without having to travel (private jet or not), that could be worth a fortune in saved time and enhanced productivity. In Cisco's case, they apparently bit the bullet and deployed the systems across the world so that they can not only host internal meetings for their executive communication, but also invite customers to use them for meetings as well. Needless to say, every meeting is a potential sales opportunity for them. And, the side benefit is that normal employees can use them during idle times.

Imagine an interviewee showing up at his/her closest Cisco office to have a Telepresence with 3 interviewers in 3 different cities? And, it really feels like you are all sitting around the same table. That's just one application where no one needed to fly nor did they have to degrade the experience or quality of the event. And, the candidate would probably be excited about working at Cisco after the experience. If you think about all the saved travel, I'm sure the system becomes much more cost effective...it just requires a more sophisticated approach to sell it - probably with some cost savings number crunching. The other approach would be to simply appeal to the CxO's desier to have the coolest toy.

I've seen it and I agree that the outward technical aspects do not really impress (not that it's unimpressive, but that the technology just doesn't seem earth shattering in execution). The key thought I left with is that there is the potential to change the way you work and the amount of travel. You could also connect with people in a more meaningful way more often.

In terms of the comparison to the Nortel system, it looks like the Nortel system is more of a high-end teleconference system with the multi-tiered chairs. Cisco's is literally meant to make you feel you are at the same table. The downside is that large conferences are more difficult. Also, if Nortel really had a second between NY and Toronto, then their system is no where near the league of Cisco's. The session I saw was cross-US and there was no appreciable delay or audio sync issues. I suppose that was the most impressive technical achievement.
metroman 12/5/2012 | 2:57:48 PM
re: Nortel Trumps Cisco? With complex codecs at either end of your data network, and the need to manage jitter, you would probably need a network of ~100ms one way latency to implement a system with little appreciable delay. This kind of delay allows you to have a natural meeting with appropriate appreciation of body language, emotional responses etc. So as long as you have enough bandwidth (which can be found in most places round the world) what you really need to do is to manage latency and jitter. I agree that if the delay was 1 second, this is terrible for a demo suite which will typically be an engineered environment. This suggests massive codec and jitter buffering delays as very few networks will create latency of 100ms between NY and Toronto. (try a continuous large packet size ping with high priority)

HPs HALO technology is similar in approach to that of Cisco and was introduced first into the market. They sell the Telepresence suite and the dedicated network as a package (you have to buy HVEN (Halo Video Exchange Network)). Their screen resolution is not as High as that of Cisco.

Polycom has a system called RPX (this may be the Nortel product) which has similar capabilities to that of Cisco but at a lower bandwidth - however they have not incorporated as much Latency/Jitter control.

The main sales pitches that are being used to sell these high cost suites are:

Lower travel costs
Higher productivity
More regular meetings - on demand rather than waiting for travel
Carbon Footprint

I think that in certain parts of the world the carbon footprint argument may well be the strongest as questions start to appear prominantly in RFPs. For this though, you may not need the full Telepresence to answer in the positive. The benefis are intangible and therefore tough to predict. I think the vendors of these systems need to communicate more case studies and business cases while also signing up to shared cost/revenue models - if they believe the intangible value then put some skin in the game.


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