Earlier today, Logitech CEO Jerry Quindlen announced on our Q4 earnings call that Logitech will introduce an HD video-calling experience on the PC this summer, and will bring HD video calling to the living room by the holiday season. These milestones are two critical steps toward delivering on our vision of a world where HD video communication is as mainstream and seamless as a telephone call – for anyone, on any screen!
Recent disastrous events have put the spotlight on the rapid adoption of video communications as a mainstream application – from “skyping” or “vidding” after the collapse of cell phone networks in earthquake stricken Haiti; to executives stranded in the wake of the Iceland volcano eruption continuing business over video calls through Logitech webcams or LifeSize video conferencing systems.
Consumers and businesses have started adopting video communications as a mean of connecting distant families and teams. But to date, mainstream adoption of video communications has been hindered by image quality, solutions too complex to install and use, and to some extent the physical limitation of video calling on a PC. And until now, HD video calls were not possible due to bandwidth and CPU requirements.
This is why we’re very excited to introduce Logitech Vid HD this summer – a free and easy way to make an HD video call. We are breaking the HD video calling barrier through Logitech Vid HD and a combination of software and hardware which reduces the minimum CPU requirement for video, making it possible for more people to experience an HD video call. When you see your first grandchild’s smile in full HD, there is no turning back to audio–only or low-def communications.
And when you bring that experience to the living room, the emergence of HD video calling on connected HDTVs will make video communications an even more natural and simple way for families to connect
But this is only the beginning. Video communications will be more than a mere phone call replacement. The free nature of video will shift usage models and business models – examples are as varied as Chatroulette and augmented reality. The broad deployment will enable new visual and social experiences from virtual yoga to virtual mental health counseling. And as TVs get connected to the Web, video calling could be integrated into content, enabling the rise of social TV programs with true audience participation. Maybe one day you could be a judge on American Idol from the comfort of your couch.
We’re very excited to bring an HD video calling experience to the PC this summer and into the living room by the holiday season…and we can’t wait to share our vision around real-time HD video on the other two screens.