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LifeSize, the value-based video conferencing telepresence upstart,
is now offering a streaming video system for broadcast-like streaming
capabilities but without the cost of installing a whole video studio.

The system requires a LifeSize end point system be used to create the
video, enabling the encoding to be performed at that client, leaving
the server appliance free to stream video down to multiple end user
viewers.
The $29,999 system includes the LifeSize Video Center server and
software. The customer also must have at least one LifeSize end point
and must buy a one-year support agreement.

The LifeSize Video Center is a server based on Intel multicore
processors and is a purpose-built appliance that runs a Linux kernel.

The core market for the system is corporate communications departments,
educational institutions and corporate training departments.

“If you were to look at a contract for (Cisco) WebEx or (Citrix)
GoToMeeting, companies pay tens of thousands of dollars per month to
use those services,” Michael Helmbrecht, director of product management
at LifeSize, tells Channel Insider. “With this, you don’t have to pay
fees for outside services to do this for you.”

Ultimately, he says, there may be hosting companies that offer an
outsourced version of the product. For those who can’t wait that long,
LifeSize has partnered with a third party finance company to create
leasing agreements for those whose capital budget may not allow for
$30,000 in upfront costs.

The server and software includes a portal server, an HD streaming system and an automatic publishing solution.

“Midmarket  companies or educational institutions are less likely
to have their own broadcast studios,” says Helmbrecht. “They are more
likely to use webinars.”

LifeSize says its Video Center device can support receiving content
from up to 20 endpoints in HD and 40 endpoints in VGA quality. And
that’s just the receiving end. Broadcast endpoints are 1,000
simultaneous live streams and up to 350 simultaneous on-demand streams
in 720p30 HD video, the company says.

LifeSize’s Video Center is available in May.