Move Over Cisco: Global Crossing Adds Managed Telepresence

Cisco Systems Inc. might get high-profile coverage for its telepresence systems with al those Ellen Page-goes-to-Lunenberg ads, but it is hardly without competition. IP service provider Global Crossing is expanding its unified communications and collaboration portfolio to include an immersive telepresence solution and more collaboration tools for high-quality virtual meetings, thanks to a new relationship with Teliris.

Teleris specializes in offering telepresence for the enterprise; Global Crossing has been their underlying carrier partner. Now, Global Crossing will sell the telepresence service itself via its network of channel partners and the global sales team, with Teleris support where needed, delivered on Global Crossings fully meshed MPLS-based global VPN and Tier 1 global public Internet network.

Telepresence will be a part of Global Crossings fully managed video collaboration service. The volume of Global Crossings collaboration services grew by 13 percent in the first half of 2010 compared to the first half of 2009. Increased usage was driven in large part by the rising cost of energy, business travel restrictions and other global economic factors, the company said. The telepresence solution is similarly aimed at bringing geographically dispersed people and their ideas together more efficiently, so customers will experience enhanced decision-making, reduced travel costs, lower carbon footprints and increased productivity. That ROI pitch seems to be paying off in the market, in general. According to Gartner Inc., the global market for telepresence systems endpoints is projected to grow at a compounded annual rate of 25.7 percent between 2008 and 2013.

Speaking of endpoints and CPE, its important to note that the big difference is high-definition and immersive screens that are used as CPE. Broadcast quality picture and sound, and imperceptible latency, ensure the interaction is focused on the participants and not the technology, regardless of the number of sites. Telepresence solutions are comprised of a set of highly integrated technologies and engineered environments that resemble a life-like experience that simply cant be realized through standard videoconferencing equipment. The carrier is offering a range of options, from single-screen personal solutions, to fully custom-engineered meeting environments.

Our telepresence offer represents a milestone in our collaboration portfolio,” said Dave Carey, Global Crossings chief marketing officer, in a statement.  Customers around the world continue to demand a wide range of collaboration tools to conduct meetings without boundaries. This new capability transforms the video conference into a true-to-life interactive experience, leading to better global communications.”

As an added benefit, customers using Global Crossings telepresence solution will be able to video stream telepresence meetings through ON24s industry-leading Webcast Center platform that delivers high-quality video for more engaging and effective meetings.

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