Is This Picture Really Face to Face

When you look at this picture, it looks pretty good. A conference table with people sitting around it. Of course, it doesn’t take that much inspection to see that three of the people are on screens
Cisco and other vendors are coming out with systems that are no longer the jerky and not realistic images of traditional video conference systems. What’s new is that the price is dropping. The technology has been around for years and used by the government and large businesses.
When you walk into one of these new video conference rooms the person you are talking to is life size and you want to reach out and touch them. The cost however is huge – like over $200,000 and up to have one of these systems in your office.
What companies are starting to do is charge for these by the hour. You can already rent a video-conference system from Kinkos but not a life size one like this.
Fortune Small Business writes TelePresence is fabulous. But can I recommend it for a real business? Honestly, I am not so sure.
Using video to replace an actual meeting has its pitfalls. The experience is, frankly, eerie – like posing for a never-ending family photo. Better not bite those nails! And productivity is a major issue. Who, after all, runs the meeting?

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