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HP Expands Video Conferencing Line with Vidyo Technology

HP has launched a set of applications for high definition (HD) videoconferencing using technology from Vidyo, fulfilling a product plan originally publicized in June 2010. HP Visual Collaboration comes in a few flavors: "Desktop," for deployment by individual users; "Executive Desktop," which works on HP's TouchSmart 60 Quad touchscreen computer and includes accessories such as a camera and headset; and "Room" for team collaboration.

HP said that it would offer a product next year that will allow users of Halo, its current high-end telepresence system, to connect with the desktop and conference room programs. It added that Halo will continue to be sold.

All of the new products use Visual Collaboration Portal, a bundle of software running on an HP ProLiant DL360 server, as a hub for managing the collaboration network. The portal provides the administrative platform for doing remote configuration and authentication, managing endpoints, allowing self-service conferences, and tapping into directory services, among other services.

For environments with videoconferencing solutions from other companies, HP has introduced Collaboration Gateway, which includes an HP ProLiant DL360 server with gateway software to link the new videoconferencing applications with legacy systems.

"HP's unrivaled position in the desktop market makes it well suited to provide information workers with visual communication tools," said Ira Weinstein, partner at Wainhouse Research. "With its new, high-performance videoconferencing solution for notebooks, desktops and conference rooms, HP is making it easy and convenient for users to maintain 'face to face' connections with customers, partners, peers, and even family and friends--while in the office or on the go."

In a play for garnering support of video conferencing as an alternative to travel, HP said its current video conferencing installations have saved 175,000 tons of carbon dioxide over 36 months. That's the equivalent, the company estimated, of removing 33,453 vehicles from the road for a year.

About the Author

Dian Schaffhauser is a writer who covers technology and business for a number of publications. Contact her at dian@dischaffhauser.com.

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