TelePresence: face-to-face collaboration

Tech October 30, 2012 00:00

By Tatchapol Poshyanonda

9,458 Viewed

Today, you face greater business demands and a more competitive marketplace. You must continually find new ways to be agile and increase speed to market while reducing costs.


Effective communication and collaboration are critical. The ability to engage immediately across geographies with employees, suppliers, and customers is a must. 
An integral part of this transformation is the use of video to communicate, collaborate and learn. High-definition, immersive video communication is transforming the way business and industry collaboration is conducted. 
TelePresence enables new ways of working, where everyone, everywhere can be more productive through face-to-face collaboration. These are some examples of the unique uses of TelePresence and collaboration technologies utilised in a number of different industries, and you’ll notice there is more to TelePresence than just meetings.
More than three-quarters of top education officials around the world believe technology can play a major role in how students learn and how teachers educate, according to a global survey commissioned by Cisco and conducted by Clarus Research Group, a Washington, DC-based research firm. 
In the same survey, 65 per cent of the college and university officials surveyed say online international programmes are a “major opportunity” for them, as these programmes can result in a greater “virtual” student body and can enrich learning opportunities by diversifying faculty, students and expert viewpoints. This allows seamless, real-time communications and “face-to-face” discussions with anyone with compatible systems, anywhere.
Last year in Asia, the heavy rains, the worst that have hit Thailand in the last 50 years resulted in floods that affected more than 3 million people as well as businesses and schools in Bangkok. Helping people in disaster and crisis situations is an important element of Cisco’s commitment to the community they operate in and in Thailand, they responded to the flood crisis with a combination of technology, human expertise, and cash donations. We collaborated with Rama Hospital and TOT to set up an online clinic that provides tele-healthcare services to patients in flooded areas. Using the network as a platform for connectivity, volunteer physicians use TelePresence to diagnose and treat patients in relief shelters or consult with doctors in remote locations, providing borderless healthcare in Bangkok.
Public sector
The criminal justice system in England and Wales is made up of several agencies (police, prosecution services, courts, and probation, prisons, and youth justice services) that work together to bring offenders to justice, and to assist the victims of crime. The system has acquired layers of bureaucracy over time, and an extensive efficiency programme is currently under way that focuses on three main areas; use of video technology, digitalisation of criminal justice case management process, and efficiency improvements from streamlining processes.
Fashion and entertainment
For the Fashion industry, BT and leading premium lifestyle brand Tommy Hilfiger implemented the industry’s first “virtual fitting rooms”. These rooms enable immediate global “in-person” communication and collaboration among Tommy Hilfiger’s designers and manufacturing facilities. The solution connects offices in Amsterdam, New York, Hong Kong and Tokyo, with potentially more units to follow. The virtual fittings rooms – based upon BT’s Unified Communications Video solution coupled with Cisco’s TelePresence technology – include add-ons such as mobile cameras and recording facilities to enable the design team – based in Amsterdam and New York – to collaborate faster and more effectively with the manufacturing team in Hong Kong. Teams will be able to discuss the development of every single piece of the collection face-to-face without having to take long-distance flights.
Welcome to your future at work, in class, on the road, in your community, and at home.
Tatchapol Poshyanonda is country manager of Cisco Systems Thailand.