Tandberg T1 Telepresence Product Aimed at Smaller Groups

In the process of being bought by Cisco, Tandberg still is growing out its Total Telepresence product line. Tandberg is launching T1, an "immersive" video collaboration product that has all the features of its higher-end T3 brethren but is aimed at smaller groups and regional offices. Cisco announced Oct. 1 its plans to buy Tandberg for $3 billion.

Being bought by Cisco Systems isn't keeping Tandberg from growing its Total Telepresence product line.

Cisco announced Oct. 1 that it was planning to buy Tandberg for $3 billion to expand its video conferencing capabilities. Tandberg in August unveiled its Telepresence T3 technology, an "immersive" video conferencing offering for enterprises that includes distinctive blue lighting, 65-inch screens and other features to give users the sense that all those at the meeting are actually in the room, according to officials.

While the T3 was designed for large-scale meetings, Tandberg Oct. 14 unveiled its Telepresence T1, a product that offers the same features for smaller groups and such places as regional offices.

"The T1 enables two people to communicate in a true telepresence environment with peers, customers and partners no matter what type of system they use," Hakon Dahle, Tandberg chief technologist, said in a statement.

Dahle also said that the touchscreen features on the T3 also are being used for the T1. Like the T3, the T1 works with the entire Tandberg product portfolio, as well as Microsoft's Office Communications Server and other standards-based video endpoints, such as PC-based, desktop and room-based video systems.

Cisco is aggressively expanding its presence in the video collaboration space. Video is a key part of what Cisco officials see as a $34 billion collaboration technology market.

CEO John Chambers has extolled the benefits of video conferencing, and has said that his own company will use its telepresence capabilities in its own meetings and for major product launches, rather than paying to fly people in from all over the world.

Tandberg is attractive to Cisco not only for its technology but its presence in the midmarket space. Cisco sells more to larger enterprises.