We’ve had a chat the other day during lunch about the future of video conferencing (yes, we sometimes speak about work during lunchtime).
The issue that was raised is where, if at all, do we see telepresence in the future – what role will it play?
While I’d love to try and answer this question, want to set the ground first, as I don’t really think there’s a good definition our there for telepresence.
So here are a few definitions of my own:
- A video conferencing system that costs 5-10 times more than any other
- A video conferencing system that comes complete with a nice (and rather expensive) wooden table
- A conference room that can only be used for video conferencing and for no other type of meeting whatsoever
- The high end of the high end of video conferencing
- A video conferencing system that will not be sold in more than a few hundred of units a year
In a nutshell, I think telepresence is simply the high end of video conferencing. It’s where companies put their latest advancement in technology in order to get the best user experience possible. That basically solves what it is (and what it’s not).
But telepresence comes with a huge cost – the system itself is ridiculously expensive, it takes up a large conference room – rendering it useless for any other types of meetings, and there are maintenance costs that are quite heavy as well.
The good news are that most of these technologies that are introduced into the telepresence products will find their way to the enterprise video conferencing market within a year or two.
And where is Telepresence headed? Well, I can definitely see them make a o 3D Presence soon. And from there? Who knows…