Video Calling On Your Home HDTV: Take 2–TelyHD And Biscotti

biscotti & tv-250 It seems that there’s a new wave of devices emerging that aim to provide high-quality video calling by way of the family TV.

This is not unfamiliar territory as both Cisco and Google have been in the space for some time. Cisco had their UMI device and associated service. Google had with the video calling capabilities built into Google TV, as exemplified by Logitech’s Revue.

It very clear that none of these prior efforts have made the kind of inroads that had been expected. Umi is no more. Logitech admitted that they took a bath on the Google TV and killed off Revue. Google seems to be continuing the Google TV effort, but it’s unclear where it’s heading.

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The Deskphone Re-Imagined: Invoxia’s NVX610

In recent years we’ve repeatedly heard of the death of the land line, how large numbers of consumers are “cutting the cord” and turning to mobile phones as their only phones. Industry data on the continuing loss of land lines bears out this claim.

Many people, including VUC regulars like myself and Dave Michels, have been calling for a reimagining of the desk phone. The premise being that an innovative reconsideration of the desk phone could save the “Home Phone.”

The trend in cord cutting is not purely a consumer phenomenon. Given dispersed and highly mobile workforces some businesses are eschewing the traditional desk phone in favor of mobile phones. This is driven by many factors, notably; cost, convenience, and feature set in the light of smart phones.

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Win A Gigaset DX800A with HDVoice

Gigaset-DX800A-250Our friends at Gigaset are continuing to promote their wares to a broad audience, this time with a contest offering their DX800A desk phone. The DX800A has been available in Europe for a year or more, but has yet to be released in North America. It’s release is anticipated at the coming CES show in January 2012.

The Gigaset DX800A is a desk phone that incorporates a DECT base, supporting a number of cordless handsets. It’s HDVoice capable supporting G.722 audio over SIP.

It also supports the use of wideband audio over its built-in Bluetooth radio. I tried it using my Plantronics Voyager Pro UC while at CES last year.

New Polycom Soundstation Duo Conference Phone

soundstation-duo-lg-a-250Early in 2010 Polycom introduced an addition to their legendary Soundstation line of conference phones, the Soundstation IP5000. (pictured right) I was lucky enough to get one for review and found it very attractive for the small office and home office user.

While I was on the exhibit floor at ITExpo last month I saw what looked like a Soundstation IP5000 at the Netx booth. However, looking a little closer I found it wasn’t a Soundstation IP5000 at all…it was a new model called the Soundstation Duo.

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HDVoice: On The Cheap & Analog RJ-11 Style

HDVoice RJ-11 Wall Plate A short while back I addressed the question of how DECT & CAT-iq may foster the broad deployment of HDVoice. At that time I described one possible scenario where carriers would deploy customer premises equipment (CPE) with an on-board cordless base station. Although a frontrunner, and the basis of Comcast’s (decidedly non-HD) HomePoint service, this is not the only approach afoot. There’s another possibility arising that involves conveying HDVoice over a plain old analog RJ-11 connection.

At first glance HDVoice and analog lines would certainly seem to be mutually exclusive. The common wisdom is that wideband telephony requires the use of an all-IP call path. This is in fact a generalization, and not absolutely true.

Firstly, it has long been possible to pass wideband audio, in the form of G.722 encoded media, over the PSTN by way of ISDN connections. Also known as BRI interfaces, an ISDN connection supports  up to two 64 kbps channels (bearer channels) and one D channel for the purposes of call setup & teardown signaling. High-quality voice using G.722 was one of the selling points of ISDN in the 1980s.

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Q: How Will Cat-iq Help HDVoice??

CAT-iq Logo-250 Earlier this week someone posed me a question by way of twitter. They asked, “How Will Cat-iq Help HDVoice??” I responded briefly, also via Twitter, but upon reflection I think a longer answer may be in order.

Some time ago VoIP luminary Jeff Pulver started to beat the drum for HDVoice. As an initial part of that effort he organized a couple of HDVoice Summits where interested parties could meet and discuss the issues surrounding widespread adoption of HDVoice.

The first of these events was in May 2009 in New York City. I was fortunate to be able to attend. It was there that I started to track who was promoting the use of HDVoice, how, and sometimes why*.

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