You Can’t Get Much Closer to the Cloud

Andreas Wienold

by Andreas Wienold, Vice President of Sales – EMEA, LifeSize

Much like our LifeSize CTO Casey King, it seems that I can´t keep my fingers off of the keyboard while on-board a plane. I´m writing this on a Lufthansa flight from Munich to Chicago, heading to the great city of Austin, Texas.  While flying tens of thousands of feet above the ground and looking out of the window, I started thinking about clouds and more specifically, what the cloud means to LifeSize and to me, personally.

The cloud is slowly making its way into our daily lives, at work and at home. At work, many of us use Salesforce.com to manage customer relationships and Dropbox to store important files and share them with colleagues. At home, we are now using music-streaming services and sharing pictures on cloud-based photo albums. The cloud is everywhere and it’s only getting bigger.

Photo Courtesy of Wikipedia

So today, amidst the cloud(s), I thought about how LifeSize is adapting to this current paradigm shift. First is LifeSize® Connections™, our brand-new cloud-based service that makes HD video calling truly ubiquitous. All you need is a webcam and Internet connection to collaborate with someone face to face. For example, the LifeSize Connections client is installed on my MacBook Air and, to stay touch with my family, I’ve installed a LifeSize® Passport™ in our living room. After only a  few seconds, I was up and running, speaking to my family in phenomenal HD quality. There were absolutely no headaches. I didn’t have to worry about the network setup on the satellite connection I was using or the network address translation (NAT) at my home. In fact, the only challenge I encountered was explaining to my 4-year-old son and 2-year-old daughter that they´re really talking to me while I’m flying in a plane above the Atlantic Ocean. They were just as surprised as the Lufthansa steward, who received a wave from my two kids, as he handed me another Diet Coke. He couldn’t believe it either.

After the call back home, I decided to further my education on LifeSize’s newest solutions. Remember the old days where corporate training was delivered on printed material? Those days are over. Just recently, LifeSize launched LEN (or the LifeSize Enablement Network), a training platform to keep the LifeSize field team and our channel partners up-to-date on our solutions and recent developments. The in-house LEN team has prepared a series of online videos to share this information, all created in our own television studio at the company headquarters in Austin. The content is easily accessed online from anywhere in the world, even on an airplane! Time flew as I went through one training episode after another and luckily, I even passed the test at the end of my lesson.

After a few days in Austin, I´ll fly back home at the end of the week. On my way home, I can’t wait to test our LifeSize® Clearsea™ app for my iPad 2 to call a few folks on the team. Maybe I´ll also review a few LifeSize® Video Center recordings of meetings that I’ve missed while I was out of town. How did all of this work in the past? I can’t imagine life without HD video.

There are tons of other ways to leverage HD video and new, innovative ideas are popping up everyday. I have been in the video communications industry for 16 years and we´re still just scratching the surface of what video could do.

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