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Glowpoint offers Webcasting

Opinion
Oct 09, 20032 mins
Data Center

The company formerly known as WireOne has been quite busy recently. First, the company sold off its equipment sales business and renamed the company Glowpoint, the same name as its service, and is completely focusing on video delivery over its private network. Now the company is expanding beyond just traditional videoconferencing with the addition of its new Glowpoint Webcasting offering, which looks to leverage the company’s existing network and its customers’ existing hardware, namely videoconferencing endpoints. Customers can use the service for both live and on-demand Webcasting for a monthly fee.

Here’s how it will work once it’s fully available later this year: A customized Web portal is used by the customer to create, schedule and manage conferences. Slides can be uploaded via the site and then a standard video call is placed over the Glowpoint network using an H.323 (IP) or H.320 (ISDN) endpoint. Glowpoint’s servers capture the audio and video, synchronize the slides and creates the Webcast. The customer doesn’t need a studio or any special equipment, they just use what the already have. Those viewing the Webcast only need a browser and Windows Media Player. The Webcast itself can be delivered over Glowpoint’s dedicated network or via a CDN service. (The company is currently in negotiations with a number CDN service providers.) Glowpoint customers can pay a flat monthly rate or use the service on a per-event basis.

I think this an excellent idea by the folks at Glowpoint. Webcasting can be a pain in the but to setup and manage. With this service, a Glowpoint customer just sits in front of their videoconferencing unit and goes. Pretty simple and painless. The one downside could be the cost. It will be priced per minute based on the total minutes used. So if 100 users watch for 60 minutes, the customer will be billed for 6,000 minutes. It could get pricey, but the lack of purchasing new equipment could offset that.