Technicolor, the Paris-based broadcast and media technology company, has announced it will deliver a custom-developed telepresence adapter to Comcast for HD video conferencing through the TV. Comcast will offer an interactive video calling service to subscribers using existing STBs and TV sets as well as Wi-Fi networks, hoping that this will at last persuade consumers to engage in telepresence. For years video conferencing has been largely confined to the corporate boardroom, but then Cisco around 2006 started promoting telepresence at a lower entry cost, but still struggled to gain widespread adoption. Comcast believs that the large scale availability of big-screen HD TVs will change that and turn the living room into a popular conferencing chamber.
Technicolor's telepresence adapter includes an HDMI input and output, Gigabit Ethernet, Wi-Fi, RF4CE control, external USB and SD card slot, and an integrated external camera and microphone. Comcast first demonstrated the telepresence offering at The Cable Show 2011 in Chicago in June, and has announced it plans to conduct market trials later this year.
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