Video Conference Calling – Say hello to Highfive & Lifesize
Highfive & Lifesize thinks the business world is ready for video conference calls, but are we?
First of all, it looks beautiful and wouldn’t look out of place in the business environment. Well, in face, it may look out of place in some archaic businesses I know of (doesn’t look so good next to the CEOs large oak desk?), but let’s get with reality; it’s a beautiful piece of technology.
So, enough with the aesthetics, let’s get down to business.
This little baby, above, gives you HD quality video, so colleagues and customers alike, can be seen in all their glory, but stop, quit it with the aesthetics already! Not only does this product look beautiful and transmit beautiful HD, but the high-fidelity mics will also ensure that everything that’s said will be crisp and clear for all to hear.
The cost? The basic system costs $1,188 per year. I’m not sure if you actually get to own the equipment at any point as price for camera isn’t shown, thus, purely the yearly cost, which means one thing to us and that is you probably won’t be able freely end contract and be able to use the HD camera for any other use. Bummer.
Key competitor to Highfive is Lifesize, although, according to the ‘competitive comparison’ analysis by Lifesize, Highfive are not even on their radar, or, is it because both companies are quite similar? Well, very similar, if it wasn’t for the fact that their cameras are just purely ugly.
Eww? So, while Lifesize are happy to analyse their competitiveness against the likes of WebEx, GoToMeeting, Blue Jeans, Zoom, StarLeaf, even if some of the comparisons are a tad dubious.
Pricing for Lifesize starts at a lower cost at just $288 per year, however, the cost of the cameras are even more ambiguous, as it does look like these are sold separately, making the price probably very similar to Highfive in the end.
Great to see fresh new approaches to video conference calling, but going back to my original question, is the world ready for video conferencing? Probably not. Looking at negative reviews left across the web for both Lifesize & Highfive, it looks like a key factor that’s holding both back is not the product or service on offer, but the worlds internet infrastructure. Live HD video? No, apparently 2016/17 isn’t ready for it yet. Then again, we didn’t look like we were ready for Trump, but we got him anyway.
So, does your organisation really need video conference calling where you can see every expression of other attendees in glorious HD… that keeps buffering and voice distortion? Let’s not even mention the individual cost of video conference calling, i.e., if you are in a company of any size, where multiple people need conference calls on a daily basis, do you have enough meeting rooms with video conferencing to deal with the demand? Let’s face it, seeing someone over video is a ‘nice to have’, but hearing people in perfect clarity and being able to view each others screen is probably the better option.
Lastly, but not least, what about those times when you’re not in the office? This is why regular, good old trustee audion conference calling is still the number one go to for communication.