Silicon Valley-based Vsee has just announced the launch of it’s low bandwidth video conferencing solutions in Europe. The company founded in 2003 and backed by the CIA’s In-Q-Tel now has an engineering team in the Netherlands and a sales team in France.
Obviously the product runs neck-to-neck with competitors like WebEx, Skype, Polycom or Citrix’s GoToMeeting – but Vsee likes to think that it offers even more collaboration tools than the rest; the video conferencing platform currenltly displays up to 12 people at a time, including features like chat, document sharing and the ability to write, highlight, etc. on another user’s screen. You do the math. The platform is only in English for now, but a majority of the functions are really very intuitive. And, like everything nowadays, installation can be done in pretty much a single click from the website.
While the solution is free for individual and personal use, the company has some A-list clients like NASA and the US Congress. The platform can be customized, crypted and even stored on a private server for maximum security. But that’s not too surprising – let’s not forget who the investors are.
But VSee really takes the cake when it comes to bandwidth – which is also one of the main reasons In-Q-tel decided to invest in VSee back in January 2008, in case you’re wondering. Bandwidth requirements are somewhere between 80 to 120 kilobits per second while more conventional technologies tend to run between 350 and 400 kbps. According to In-Q-tel’s website, it’s “roughly equivalent to what Skype requires only for voice communications”.
Plus, in order to convince its clients of the solutions potential, Vsee’s 20-person team uses it as practically the only means of communication within the company. Just about every team member is in a different city so it’s definitely a lifesaver for the team of telecommuters. Ah, there are still 8 people that don’t get any camera love for each video conferencing session that includes the whole company. Guess it’s not all that bad.