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Cisco Umi brings HD telepresence to the living room
Category : General 07 Oct 2010 11:27 AM | Insider News
Cisco Systems unveiled Cisco Umi today, its consumer-focused telepresence offering that lets people connect to each other using videoconferencing on their HD television in their living rooms.
Cisco Umi (pronounced YOU-me) is a telecommunications system that requires a mix of Cisco hardware and hardware you'll already need to own. The Umi service includes a Cisco-issued high-definition camera with an embedded microphone, a set-top box, and a remote, but you'll need your own HD TV (1080p) and Internet connection to use it. There is no external microphone, but you can recalibrate the audio quality. Cisco's algorithms cancel external noice and bring the voices in the foreground.
Video calls and video messages are at the center of the Umi service, but the remote will also let customers manage their contact list, profiles, and settings. In addition, Umi will also record videos capable of being uploaded to Facebook and YouTube, or attached in an e-mail message
Umi's VoIP element is also strong, with the ability to place and receive video calls from friends and family from other programs equipped with VoIP video calling, specifically Google video chat
As analysts predicted, the hardware alone will cost $599, with a $24.99 monthly service fee. Cisco will make Umi available on November 14 at Best Buy, with preorders beginning today. The hardware components will also be available at Magnolia Home theater. In addition, Cisco and Verizon will bring Umi to Verizon Fios fiber-optic network customers early in 2011
TAGS : Cisco Umi