Meaning "long distance presence," it refers to a videoconference session that feels like a live meeting. Notable features are multiple screens positioned at the other side of the conference table and a high-quality directional audio system. The screens are large enough to render people in life-size or near-life-size proportions, and the audio comes from a loudspeaker located near the person talking. Conference rooms may also be designed to optimize the acoustics so that remote participants sound like they were sitting in the room.|
Telepresence also implies high-definition resolution at 720p and a fair amount of network bandwidth. For example, a three-screen telepresence call requires from 3 to 12 Mbps. Industry pundits predict huge growth in the field over the next decade. See videoconferencing and telesurgery.
Rather than squeezing everyone onto one screen, telepresence uses multiple screens on the long side of a conference table. In this TANDBERG system, the cameras are on top, and the speakers are below at each end. When participants in the center talk, both speakers simulate a center channel. The bottom screen is used for the data channel (see
A far cry from the videoconferencing rooms of the 1980s, Polycom's RPX systems are used for classroom training and large meetings. This self-contained system uses four rear-projection monitors stitched together to create a 16 x 4 foot display for up to 28 people. The cameras are behind the screen at eye level, and the speakers are at the sides and top. (Image courtesy of Polycom, Inc, www.polycom.com)