• United States
Senior Editor

Where does videoconferencing stand?

Sep 22, 20042 mins
Enterprise ApplicationsVideoconferencing

* A look at how successful IP-based videoconferencing technology has or has not been

Despite the annual predictions that have come and gone claiming, “This is the year,” videoconferencing, IP-based video in particular, is steadily growing. A recent survey of over 600 videoconferencing users by Wainhouse Research in Brookline, Mass. Shows almost 14% of the respondents are doing all of their conferencing over IP today. Over the next 24 months, that number is expected to double to 28%. The number of respondents with some form of IP videoconferencing deployed is almost 60%.

In an in-depth story in Network World this week, our author ( looks at the number of users deploying IP-based videoconferencing systems and gets a measure on how successful the technology has or has not been.

According to our author, the numbers back up the anecdotal evidence that videoconferencing is on the rise. Traditional vendors like Polycom, Tandberg, Sony and VCON recorded a 26% increase in the number of group conferencing unit shipped (27,742 total) and 25% increase in revenue ($150.7M) in Q2’04, according to Wainhouse Research.

Those numbers do not tell the whole story. “The action is in the software front,” says Andrew Davis, principal analyst at Wainhouse. “The problem we’re having is that there are dozens of companies in the market, like WebEx, which has added video, none of them give out number or even have clue to the numbers.”

The desktop video market, which is almost exclusively IP-based, has remained relatively flat for the past couple years, but Davis says the combination of new software-based systems and more powerful PCs will help with that boom. Companies like First Virtual Communication, Arel, Meetrix and Visual Nexus all have developed software clients that combine audio, video and data in a single interface, with standard Webcams like those sold by Logitech providing the video source.

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