June 27, 2015

June 2015 around the industry

Here are some interesting items of note around the video conferencing world from June 2015 - Infocomm month!

  • VDO360 released a new product combining their camera with an Intel NUC. It's a logical advancement in the space. Read what David M had to say HERE about it.
  • Google's Chromebox for meetings got a refresh. What does this mean for enterprise communication? Nothing. I don't know if the $250 per year support is mandatory or not. Either way, I wouldn't bother with it since it's using Hangouts which is inferior to most dedicated software video conference products out there.
  • Pricing and release date for Microsoft's Surface Hub was announced. I saw it at Enterprise Connect and it rated a "meh". It's expensive. The only people that I've seen who are excited about it are its resellers.
  • David D had a great take on the Surface Hub HERE 
  • Here is David D's take on Infocomm 
  • Ira Weinstein with Wainhouse posted his thoughts on Infcomm HERE 
  • David M posted his take on the show HERE and HERE
  • Polycom's stock took a dive in the last part of June. More details at this link.
  • Below is an interesting podcast with Cisco's Rowan Trollope. The podcast is called "This Week in Startups" which I find interesting that he would be on. I know that Cisco likes to BUY startups but they are most certainly not one themselves so that's why I thought it was odd. Anyway, after listening to the it, I have a better appreciation for Rowan and what he's trying to do. He does use the word "I" quite a bit and it makes me wonder how much influence he has on product creation. Personally, I've never been a believer in taking credit for work not personally done by myself. Now if he actually did do this stuff, well, that's cool.

Unfortunately, I didn't make it to Infocomm this year. By the time I found out that we weren't going to be exhibitors it was too costly to book the flight and hotel. From the blogs that I read, it didn't sound like I missed much. There were many rants about lack of revolutionary technologies. I'll cover the reasons behind that in a future blog.

What's in store for July?
Thanks for reading

June 23, 2015

Polycom Downgraded

Shares of Polycom (NASDAQ:PLCM) were down 9.6% as of 11:15 a.m. Monday after William Blair analyst Jason Ader downgraded the stock from "market perform" to "underperform." 

The interesting part of the article is this:

Ader also expressed longer-term concerns for Polycom's relationship with Microsoft, as the tech giant launched its own videoconferencing solution earlier this year dubbed Microsoft Surface Hub.

The Surface Hub is nothing like any product Polycom currently sells, and that's a good thing for Polycom. I don't see the Hub cutting into anyone's business in this space until the product gets refined. That may take a while.

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June 22, 2015

Zagg Keyboard Cover for iPad Air Review

I don't normally start a product review the minute I get something in my hands, but since it's a keyboard connected to my iPad, what better way to review it than on the fly while using it? Armed with a birthday gift card from Amazon, I went in search of the "best keyboard cover for iPad Air under $50" - because I am cheap. So read on for the details behind my choice.

June 19, 2015

Apple watch for video chat

I knew it would only be a matter of time. With any luck, a user will be able to get about two minutes of video chatting in before the battery dies.

The first Apple Watch might have only just reached stores, but that isn't stopping rumors about Cupertino's next wearable. Sources for 9to5Mac claim that Apple already has some big plans for its second-generation Watch, and the highlight would be a front camera for video calls

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June 18, 2015

Drones for video conferencing

While I don't think drones and video conferencing go together, I do see a whole host of ideas where video enabled drones can help certain situations. Especially, if they are streaming live with high quality and not recording something for playback later. Emergency services could make great use of drones during civil disruptions, hazardous conditions and natural disaster relief.

ORLANDO, Fla.--()--InfoComm – Demonstrating its singular ability to take video conferencing to a whole new level of effectiveness for a wide variety of customers involved in law enforcement, security, first responders, and emergency communications, Stampede (www.stampedeglobal.com), North America’s leading provider of custom configured ProAV solutions, today announced it was teaming up with Vidyo, Inc. (www.vidyo.com), a leader in visual communications and collaboration, to introduce drone-based video conferencing at InfoComm 2015

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June 11, 2015

I want to test your product

That's right, I want to test your video conferencing related product.

Over the last several years I have tested literally hundreds of video conferencing related products from a variety of companies. In just the past six months, I have tested hardware products from: Cisco, Polycom, Samsung, Plantronics, Radvision, Lifesize, Samson and Software products from: Zoom, Ezuce, Lifesize, StarLeaf, Airwave, Ubiety.

Your hardware, your software, camera, codec, or any other video conferencing related product. Special interest is anything that helps data collaboration.

Things I won't test: Networking equipment and overly complicated audio gear. Other than that, bring it on.

Since I'm missing out on Infocomm this year, I need an outlet to see what's new and exciting in the industry. Plus, I enjoy trying new products. Sometimes I'll write a review about the product and other times I'll just provide feedback to the company who provided it. Mostly it's just for my own enjoyment and if anyone needs a recommendation for something, I am better equipped.

Just contact me via email (bhellard at gmail.com) or Twitter and we'll get started


June 07, 2015

Infocomm First Timers

Next week starts the annual Infocomm show, in ButtSweat Florida. Although I won't be in attendance this year, let this serve as some help for those first timers out there. If you're an exhibitor or an attendee, the show can be overwhelming at times. Let's settle down and dig in.

May 25, 2015

Other Industry bloggers/analysts

There are many Video conferencing / Unified Communication bloggers and analysts out there so I wanted to put together a list of them because.

Image courtesy of Iamnee from freedigitalimages.net

May 21, 2015

Why hasn't set top home video conferencing taken off?

For years we have been hearing about video chats from the living room. I first heard about it 13 or 14 years ago. So why hasn't this technology taken off like the pundits predicted years (and years) ago? Let's take a look.

May 13, 2015

Why I don’t use presence software

I recently found out that Zoom integrated presence functionality. Skype for Business has it as well. I’m sure one of the other dozen UC/Video chat apps I have on my laptop do to. Do I use it, or any other locked in, non-ubiquitous program or app? There they both sit on my computer, ready to be used and colleagues who want me to use it (because they use it). Yet I don’t use them, and here is why.