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#10310 by scottlindner
Tue May 26, 2009 5:03 pm
This is somewhat off topic from Ooma, but maybe it isn't. I recently have been looking for an effective way to do video conferencing with my family. The reason is there's a ton of new nieces, nephews, and grandchildren and we're all scattered about the country. Some of my family are uber geeks and would prefer to do this over a computer because it's the geek thing to do.. and because it is (assumed) to be cheaper. The other half of my family is just the opposite and won't do a thing unless it is super easy and they wouldn't care about the cost. I couldn't find any products that are based on standards so you can mix and match products that both work on computers and a stand alone device. It would be cool if it were either a phone with a screen or a set top box for the entertainment center. I never could find a solution. Maybe there are and I just looked in the wrong place. If you know of something please let me know. If not.. read on...

So I was just thinking. Is this something that Ooma could help solve? I have no clue but it seems like it might have most of the internal plumbing (the hard stuff) already figured out. I know the teleconferencing systems we use at work either use two telephone lines (can you say Ooma) or can go directly over the network (again.. can you say Ooma). I know that if you want to video conference with someone that uses two phone lines and someone else that uses the network based models you need to configure a bridge with the telephone company (again.. Ooma). What I don't know is if this is really possible or reasonably cost effective for consumers. It's just a thought to throw out there for the people that really understand the video conferencing technologies. I'm curious what your thoughts are.

Maybe it isn't Ooma today, but maybe something to think about in the future if it even fits in Ooma's business model. Whatever it is, I hope it's done such that it works with existing technologies people have.

Cheers,
Scott
#10416 by voipdabbler
Thu May 28, 2009 10:30 am
Actually, I think it may not be very cost effective for Ooma or other VOIP providers to try to incorporate video since it would require more bandwidth at their server level too. In addition, most surveys have shown that the majority of people (other than early 20 somethings or teenagers, who are more enamored of their own images due to youthful appearances) don't want video phones since they would constantly worry about their appearance when answering their phones throughout the day. There are plenty of free video conferencing options available, separate from phone service. If you're willing to pay a fee, your options open up even more. FYI, if you don't have a webcam, you can use a digital camcorder as a webcam (you'll usually have far better resolution, too). I use my Panasonic digital camcorder for video conferencing, utilizing Tracker Cam's free drivers. For free services, you might try AOL's AIM.
#10417 by southsound
Thu May 28, 2009 10:46 am
voipdabbler wrote:surveys have shown that the majority of people (other than early 20 somethings or teenagers, who are more enamored of their own images due to youthful appearances) don't want video phones since they would constantly worry about their appearance when answering their phones throughout the day.

I never thought about it before, but in my case, it might be a great way to discourage telemarketers. After seeing my image on the videophone many would choose not to call back. Kind of like call block or the do not call list, but with a punch!

Recently our local retirement home hosted a "Topless Car Wash" that caused quite a stir among those who couldn't get the picture of great granny in just short shorts out of their minds. Turns out it was really just wonderful marketing. They washed your car, minus the roof, for free. If you wanted the top washed, you had to make a donation. :)
#10480 by oomg
Fri May 29, 2009 10:37 pm
southsound wrote:Recently our local retirement home hosted a "Topless Car Wash" that caused quite a stir among those who couldn't get the picture of great granny in just short shorts out of their minds. Turns out it was really just wonderful marketing. They washed your car, minus the roof, for free. If you wanted the top washed, you had to make a donation. :)


Oh... for a moment I though it was limited to convertibles.
#10489 by scottlindner
Sat May 30, 2009 5:30 am
voipdabbler wrote:Actually, I think it may not be very cost effective for Ooma or other VOIP providers to try to incorporate video since it would require more bandwidth at their server level too. In addition, most surveys have shown that the majority of people (other than early 20 somethings or teenagers, who are more enamored of their own images due to youthful appearances) don't want video phones since they would constantly worry about their appearance when answering their phones throughout the day. There are plenty of free video conferencing options available, separate from phone service. If you're willing to pay a fee, your options open up even more. FYI, if you don't have a webcam, you can use a digital camcorder as a webcam (you'll usually have far better resolution, too). I use my Panasonic digital camcorder for video conferencing, utilizing Tracker Cam's free drivers. For free services, you might try AOL's AIM.


Bandwidth is cheap. You do realize that Ooma Premier already gives us two phone lines? If it was cost prohibitive to provide two lines per person. then we're doomed to own bricks in the future.

Do you know what protocol that works with non PC based video phones, and that also works with PC based software?

Cheers,
Scott

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