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Sony Readies HD Videoconferencing

Sony says its preparing to ship one of the industry's first 1080i high-definition videoconferencing systems. The new PCS-XG80 system combines 1080i resolution and a frame rate of 60 fields per second to deliver live video quality and a natural alternative to face-to-face meetings.

Sony says its preparing to ship one of the industry's first 1080i high-definition videoconferencing systems. The new PCS-XG80 system combines 1080i resolution and a frame rate of 60 fields per second to deliver live video quality and a natural alternative to face-to-face meetings.

The new system is an expansion of Sony's HD videoconferencing line-up. It incorporates several functions and features of the company's PCS-HG90 system, company officials said. Users can share PC data in HD at 30 frames per second, and dual stream functionality allows them to send two parallel streams of live, HD information. Both live camera view and animated PowerPoint data, for example, can be displayed in HD on two different screens or projectors at a remote site.

The new PCS-XG80 supports six-site multipoint conferencing so users can simultaneously call up to five other remote sites. The system also supports 20 different languages and includes wide-band stereo audio to enhance the overall meeting experience.

In a statement, Mike Sekiguchi, general manager for Sony Electronics' IPELA videoconferencing group, said the company believed the new system could serve large organizations, "as well as small and medium size enterprises, healthcare institutions, education establishments and government bodies that are looking for cost-effective, proven communication technologies."

The new system is expected to be available this spring at a suggested list price of $8,999. It will be available nationwide through Spire Global, which serves as Sony Electronics' sales and service arm for its IPELA line of IP-based video conferencing endpoints and accessory products. Spire Global can be reached at www.spireglobal.com.



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