New Tandberg Profile Telepresence Product Aimed at SMBs

Tandberg is showing the expertise in video conferencing for smaller businesses that got Cisco interested in buying it. The company is unveiling its Profile 42" system for smaller conference rooms and SMBs, which Tandberg officials say will be an important market for the company as the global economy improves.

Tandberg is continuing to grow its Profile video conferencing portfolio, rolling out a new offering aimed at the SMB space.

The newest addition to the Profile HD video conferencing lineup is a 42-inch offering for the entry-level space, an area that Tandberg officials believe will grow in importance as the economy improves.

"They are going to be freeing up funds faster [than enterprises] as the recovery [takes hold]," Peter Nutley, director of global marketing at Tandberg, said in an interview.

Tandberg introduced the Profile 42" Oct. 20, along with a pair of new 65-inch offerings for larger companies.

The Norwegian vendor's work in creating online collaboration products for smaller companies is a key aspect that make the company attractive to Cisco Systems.

Cisco this month offered to buy Tandberg for $3 billion, but the bid was rejected by a group of shareholders Oct. 15 as too low. Analysts said Tandberg would be a good fit for Cisco, and have predicted that the networking giant will up its bid.

An analyst by the Gerson Lehrman Group consulting firm released Oct. 19 says that it makes sense for Cisco to up the bid, given that the company has the money-about $44 billion in current assets-and that buying Tandberg is the fastest way for Cisco to reach its goal of getting $1 billion in revenue in its telepresence business in three years.

Throughout the past few weeks, as the Cisco deal churned, Tandberg has aggressively rolled out new products.

On Oct. 14, the company unveiled a new addition to its Total Telepresence line, the T1, also aimed at smaller groups.

Now the company is growing its Profile HD video conferencing line. Like the other Profile offerings, the 42-inch product offers 1080p HD screens and an easy-to-use user interface, Nutley said. It also comes with high-quality audio and a PrecisionHD camera.

All the Profiles-which now come in 42, 52 and 65 inches-also come with Tandberg's Codec technology, which is designed to make it easier for users to show presentations and multimedia during the online meeting.

The Profile 42" comes in two flavors, one with the Codec C60 and the other with the Codec C20plus, which both can be used in such areas as small conference rooms.

The Profile 42" with the Codec C20plus is a completely integrated offering aimed at SMBs.