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SMBs ARE RAPIDLY GRAVITATING TO VIDEO CONFERENCING FOR FOUR KEY REASONS

By Julie Coontz – Smart Office Solutions
August 5, 2011

Until recently, most SMBs had avoided bringing video conferencing technology into their offices preferring online services, audio conferences and webcams for cost and ease of use. What they lost in quality, they saved on their bottom line. Today however, manufacturers such as Panasonic are delivering such crystal clear video and audio conferencing solutions for a fraction of their previous price that businesses are now flocking to the in-house hardware they once avoided for four key reasons.

1. Ease of Use
Video conferencing manufacturers have really started to embrace the end user experience, and as such, the ease of use of setting up and operating video conferencing codecs and systems has rapidly evolved into a pleasant experience. Panasonic does a particularly good job of making their equipment tremendously user friendly right out-of-the-box. Gone are the days of weighty and unmanageable systems; here now are practical, easily controlled units that take away all the frustrating guess-work and essentially take the user by the hand.

2. Enhanced High Definition Quality
Say goodbye to excessive packet loss, latency issues and lost calls. The technology now employed by almost all manufacturers is so reliable, even on low-end and inexpensive systems, that it makes using certain web-based services or webcams superfluous. The clear leader in this field is Panasonic. Known for their crystal clear images , and even more so for their superior audio, the user experience is now so good that people are often having to keep in mind that every facial expression and nuance is detected and transmitted in real time. This natural feel enables meetings to occur worldwide with no loss of quality, saving the average company many thousands of dollars in travel expenses annually.

3. Lower Bandwidth Requirements
By and large the previous bandwidth requirements were simply not attainable for a reasonable cost for most SMBs. Today, video conferencing manufacturers utilize technology that vastly reduces the amount of bandwidth required to make a video call through better compression. Point to point calls can now be made with as little as .384 Mbps while multi-site calls can be made with as little as 1.2 Mbps. Simultaneously, the cost of bandwidth has dropped drastically thus bridging a technology chasm that had previously separated those who could afford HDVC and those for whom it was too costly.

4. Lower Price Tags
Perhaps the most notable change in trend toward in-house HDVC is the vast reduction in price. The financial commitment previously required in order to bring high definition video conferencing into the workplace was often 5 figures or more. Now, with companies like Panasonic focusing on the SMB market, price tags have been slashed and it is easy to own HDVC for as little as $4-5k. Cost alone is a strong argument for SMBs to abandon their online services for a much better audio visual experience available in-house at their fingertips.

This new generation of user-friendly HDVC that requires less bandwidth and monetary investment is gaining strength rapidly in the SMB market. The ability to limit travel, meet instantly and be independent of 3rd party services is garnering great attention. Many SMBs are now eagerly pursuing implementation of high definition video conferencing systems shifting the trend toward in-house solutions. With the advent of products like Panasonic's new line of HDVC, which require no complicated installation, the final nail in the old VC coffin is laid and SMBs are set free to meet without barriers.
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PANASONIC INTRODUCES TWO CUTTING-EDGE HIGH DEFINITION VISUAL COMMUNICATIONS SYSTEMS AT INFOCOMM SHOW

ORLANDO, FL (June 15, 2011)

Panasonic today announced the introduction of its next generation High Definition Visual Communications (HDVC) Systems, which will be unveiled at InfoComm, June 15 -17 at the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, FL at Panasonic Booth #3829 . The two new models, KX-VC600 and KX-VC300, use low bandwidth to deliver a stunning Full HD experience with life-like audio and video. The systems are interoperable with other brands of video conferencing devices. The currently available KX-VC500 is also interoperable with other devices through a free software upgrade.

"Panasonic is building upon the success of its ground-breaking first system, with two models designed to bring high-quality video conferencing to more businesses," said Bill Taylor, President of Panasonic System Networks Company of America." The KX-VC600 and KX-VC300 HD Visual Communications systems are designed to be versatile and practical, with simple set-up and operation. They are portable and highly efficient, allowing businesses to conduct productive real-time collaboration while minimizing the business disruption of travel."

As the fastest growing collaboration technology, video conferencing facilitates real-time, face-to-face communications. Panasonic is leading the way in this powerful HD technology, enabling businesses to maximize productivity and increase revenue. The two new cutting-edge Panasonic HDVC systems are easy to set up and operate and include an array of features that facilitate outstanding visual and voice communication.

Features of the KX-VC600 and KX-VC300 include:
  • Easy operation – Panasonic's systems are easy to set up and use. Operation is simple and does not require an IT expert each time you want to initiate a video conference.
  • Stable connection - ensures smooth and reliable image and sound transmission.
  • Low bandwidth requirements - 3 Mbps min for 1080i, 1.5 Mbps for 720p* optimal performance without the need for a high bandwidth connection.
  • Computer connection/sub-camera connection – effective communication is possible while showing the other party a PC screen or second camera image.
  • Compact and lightweight design – the VC600 and VC300 main units occupy 54% less volume than the VC500 and weigh in at a lightweight 4.4 lbs, making the units extremely portable so you can take them wherever you need to have a video conference.
Both the VC600 and the VC300 connect to a wide range of monitors from table tops to projectors for a complete collaborative experience. Charts, graphs and other important content on a PC can be easily viewed by all parties for efficient business communication. The camera is also capable of taking precise close-up HD snapshots of important details.

The KX-VC600 delivers 1920 x 1080i resolution and offers multi-point video conferencing simultaneously connecting up to four parties. The system also boasts 360° full duplex audio.

The KX-VC300 comes standard with a two point-to-point (four optional) video conferencing capability and delivers 1280 x720p resolution with 360° full duplex audio.

Panasonic's HD Visual Communication Systems will be available in July 2011, featuring an array of component options, configurations and packages. Additional information can be found at www.panasonic.com/hdvc

*These values are for reference purposes only. The actual value may vary depending on the image and communications conditions.
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Panasonic introduces immersive 3D capability in its HD Visual Communications System (HDVC)

LAS VEGAS, NV, Jan 05 (MARKET WIRE)
Panasonic, a worldwide leader in Full HD 3D technology, today introduced immersive 3D capability in its HD Visual Communications System (HDVC). Panasonic continues to lead the marketplace with a range of cutting-edge 3D products, creating opportunities for enterprises to take their operations to the next level. The 3D HDVC solution enhances the productivity and collaboration of key commercial and professional applications such as healthcare, manufacturing and education. It will be on display at the Panasonic booth #9408 in the Las Vegas Convention Center at the Consumer Electronics Show.

Panasonic's 3D HDVC provides a scalable and reliable solution for capturing immersive content as well as providing an easy-to-use training tool for educators. Adding the advantage of enhanced depth of field to the HDVC allows medical procedures to be viewed and demonstrated with greater clarity and realism for diagnosis and teaching. The myriad manufacturing applications include real time viewing of computer aided design (CAD) schematics to make details pop and offer an enhanced viewing perspective.

"Panasonic 3D HDVC offers greater real time collaboration and realism impossible to experience with traditional 2D video conferencing," said Bill Taylor, president of Panasonic System Networks Company of America. "As a worldwide leader in 3D technology, Panasonic is proud to bring the power of 3D to our advanced HDVC solution."

Delivering Full HD video and 360 degrees full duplex audio, the HDVC system surpasses the collaboration capabilities of conventional video conferencing systems, providing businesses and institutions with a genuinely viable alternative to business travel. The Panasonic HDVC system is scalable, meaning it allows for Full HD images to be displayed on a wide range of HD monitors, from desktop LCDs all the way up to a 152-inch class HD Plasma display, or even projected with an HD projector. The system also allows for multiple HD cameras to be utilized, so a second camera can zoom in and share detailed images such as solder joints, chips on printed circuit boards, manufacturing lines, or even close-up details during medical procedures.

For additional information on the HDVC system, visit www.panasonic.com/hdvc.
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Panasonic Launches High Definition Video Conferencing to the Middle East Market

Dubai, Unites Arab Emirates: Pansonic today launched its new high definition two way communications system, the KX-VC500 for the Middle East market.

The new Full HD system dramatically allows for video conferencing taking place over greater distances without any loss of quality. The system is ideal for general business use as it greatly reduces the time and expense of travelling. The KX-VC500 is a clear departure from conventional video conferencing. This system is supported by advanced Pansonic technologies to help deliver high image and sound quality and stable connection.

The Panasonic KX-VC500 HD Visual Communications Solution is comprised of Panasonic 50 inch Full HD VIERA Plasma TV, the codec, two HD video cameras, 360 degrees HD audio microphone, VPN router and an intuitive remote control, along with standard cables and accessories. It includes on-screen guidance and one-touch memory keys for frequent meetings and also includes both on-site and remote technical support from Panasonic.

"The KX-VC500 is an ideal conference and communication tool for offices across the Middle East with multiple branches and businesses with remote operatives," commented Hiroshi, Maruyama, general manager, Telecom Products, Panasonic Marketing Middle East.

"The VC500 is designed to provide real-time, communication that replicates the experience of being in the same room with distant and isolated colleagues," he added.

Panasonic's HD Visual Communications System employs H.264 video compression to efficiently transmit HD video and audio using roughly half the bandwidth of competitive systems. Additionally, the system's flexibility and scalability accommodates a wide range of HD displays, from small-scale desktop LCDs to a 150" HD Plasma, or HD projector.

It also allows for multiple HD cameras to be utilized, so a second camera can be used as a document camera or to send images of a specific activity or application. The HD Visual Communications System also allows full-motion, high-resolution video to be transmitted from laptops connected to the system.

The system allows for full HD images to be displayed on a wide range of HD monitors, from desktop LCDs to a 150" HD Plasma, or even projected with an HD projector on a large screen at a conference presentation or an educational institution.

Distance is no longer a barrier. Panasonic's HD Visual Communications System makes it possible to instantaneously communicate and collaborate with colleagues and industry experts wherever they happen to be. With full HD 1080i video and 360° audio delivered over a standard broadband connection, the Panasonic HDVC System allows companies to save money by reducing travel and improving productivity.
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About Panasonic System Networks Company of America
Based in Secaucus, NJ, Panasonic System Networks Company of America is a unit of Panasonic Corporation of North America, the principal North American subsidiary of Panasonic Corporation (NYSE: PC). A comprehensive business-to-business solutions provider, the company develops and delivers reliable, affordable, and flexible solutions for communication, collaboration, security and productivity. The complete suite of solutions addresses home and business communications, security and surveillance systems, retail information systems, medical imaging, office productivity and high definition visual conferencing, keeping Panasonic customers connected, informed, accessible and secure. Information is available at www.panasonic.com/psna. Additional company information for journalists is available at www.panasonic.com/pressroom.
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