Infrastructure // Networking
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5 Reasons SMBs Should Adopt Videoconferencing

As the price and complexity have declined, more SMBs are now deploying in-house video technology.

Tandberg's Desktop Movi Video Conferencing System
(click image for larger view)
Tandberg's Desktop Movi Video Conferencing System
3. Cloud Computing

While companies may have previously been interested in videoconferencing technology, many did not want the hassles that come with deploying and managing the videoconferencing infrastructure. Enter cloud-based services, offering SMBs a wide range of videoconferencing options.

On the low end are companies like ooVoo, Skype, Vidyo, and Vivu, whose services can be free. Vendors such as AT&T, BT, Cisco, and Verizon are pushing more sophisticated conferences, which cost about $10 to $50 per user, per month.

4. Improved Video Quality

What good is a conference if one can't clearly see the participants or their materials? "Previously, issues such as latency interfered with video transmissions," noted Jonathan Edwards, a research analyst at International Data Corp. With the emergence of low cost, high-definition systems and the availability of more network bandwidth, companies now find that video quality -- even with the low-end systems -- is quite acceptable, in most cases.

5. Simplified Conferencing Systems

Traditionally, the underlying infrastructure was proprietary, cumbersome to deploy, and difficult to use. Not anymore. Users can now start a video session by clicking on a link in a meeting invitation, accessing a permanent link on a corporate intranet, or entering an address in a videoconferencing system's directory.

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