Logitech is launching a new conference camera that turns any meeting room into a video collaboration place.
The Logitech ConferenceCam CC3000e sells for $1,000, which is a lot more than your typical webcam. But it offers video conferencing capabilities that usually cost $7,000 or more. The company hopes to disrupt more expensive video conference solutions and make video collaboration more mobile across the enterprise.
The Switzerland-based maker of PC peripheral equipment is positioning the camera as a breakthrough in video conferencing because it can set up a high-definition video conference for work groups of six to 10 people, said Sam Feng, the director of product marketing at Logitech, in an interview with VentureBeat.
“Most rooms are not wired for video conferences, but you can take this anywhere,” Feng said. “We’ve made consumer cameras for a while, but this evolved as a more capable product for the enterprise.”
The system includes a 1080p HD video camera, enterprise-quality audio, and the capability to easily connect to a laptop or thin client. It can connect to a meeting room projector or monitor. The camera has a 90-degree field of view, which is wide enough to catch a roomful of people. It has 10-times lossless zoom, a Carl Zeiss glass-lens panning capability. That enables someone with a remote control to pan the camera 260 degrees for closeups or whiteboard viewing.
“The number of meeting rooms and collaboration spaces has exploded in new office environments. Yet the cost and complexity of deployment and use of current video conferencing solutions has made it impossible to equip 95 percent of these rooms, forcing employees to revert to voice,” said Eric Kintz, Logitech senior vice president. “The ConferenceCam CC3000e is a breakthrough in group video conferencing allowing people to collaborate on their own terms anywhere, any time, and with any device and any application.”
The camera has features you don’t get with a simple Skype conference, such as noise and echo cancellation, an omni-directional stereo microphone, or mono sound with a 20-foot diameter range, and a slot to deter theft.
“The way enterprises collaborate is rapidly changing,” said Andrew W. Davis, the senior partner and cofounder at Wainhouse Research. “These changes include a shift in user preferences toward personal, software-based solutions and consumer devices (BYOD). Many IT teams are responding by providing video-enabled solutions for use in smaller meeting rooms and workspaces – and not replicating the dedicated video solutions traditionally found in the large, executive boardrooms. Logitech’s newest ConferenceCam addresses this shift with features that maintain the familiar software-based experience at a price that is affordable for any size company.”
The camera works with a Mac, PC, tablet, or smartphone. It can connect via universal serial bus (USB), Bluetooth, or near-field communication. You can use it with Microsoft Lync, Cisco Jabber, WebEx, Skype, Vidyo, and LifeSize UVC ClearSea. It has an optional wall mount and remote control. It will be available this month.