Channelnomics

LifeSize Introduces Flexible Video Conferencing

LifeSize, the company founded on low-cost and efficient high-definition video conferencing solutions, is looking to disrupt the communications and collaboration market with virtualized, easy to deploy and affordable packages.

The new LifeSize UVC Platform – or unified video conferencing – pools all of LifeSize applications under one package. Businesses can buy the video conferencing on an as-needed basis, either as a hardware or software package, and add capabilities as need and a capacity as demands dictate.

The flexibility comes from the end user’s ability to turn on applications in the package. While UVC contains all of LifeSize’s video conferencing, recording and management capabilities, users only pay for the applications they activate.

What LifeSize is trying to do is differentiate from other video conference providers by first provide users flexibility in purchasing and use, and second highlighting how competitors force the purchase of “shelfware” in unused applications in many one-size-fits-all packages.

Given that LifeSize can deliver its various applications – stream and record, firwall/NAT transversal and gatekeeper – as either hardware or software means end users can quickly deploy UVC in their data center or download the package on existing servers or hosted environments.

UVC starts at $3,999 and LifeSize is offering a 30-day trial to businesses looking to experience the functionality of the full package. UVC does not come with the required monitors, cameras and other equipment that enable video conferencing.

LifeSize is on several vendors trying to break through in the video conferencing market against the market leaders – Cisco, Avaya, Polycom and Microsoft. Last year it bought Italy-based software maker Miral to extend its video conferencing applications to mobile devices, and last fall it unveiled support for video conferencing to iPhones.

While LifeSize is considered innovative and nimble, it didn’t have a good year in 2011. Quarter-to-quarter Revenues for the Austin-based company fell 19 percent in the last three months of 2011. Company executives say the slump wasn’t a reflection of overall market trends or company weakness. Market analysts said the miss was unexpected and unusual.

Video conferencing is on an upswing as businesses look to increase productivity and reduce travel costs through the advanced communications. Many companies are requiring their employees and contractors to use video conferencing before considering travel. Cisco is even requiring employees to use video for most meetings.

LifeSize is offering businesses a free, 30-day trial. Leads generated through the trial program will be used to seed channel partners with new business, the company tells Channelnomics.

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