Lifesize Teams With Skype on Passport HD Video

By Channel Insider Staff

LifeSize Communications is bringing its Passport high-definition video conferencing capabilities to Skype.

LifeSize officials announced April 19 that its Passport product, launched in 2009 and aimed at SMBs, home offices and mobile workers, is now qualified to work with Skype, the Internet-based video calling company that has more than 600 million users.

Now that Passport can be plugged into Skype, users of Passport—which offers telepresence-level quality—can talk with Skype users via video conferencing.

"We now fully work in the Skype ecosystem," Michael Helmbrecht, vice president of product marketing, said in an interview with eWEEK.

For LifeSize, a company owned by Logitech, the partnership gives it access to Skype’s massive customer base, Helmbrecht said. Skype, which began its life as a consumer-focused company, gets another path into the business world.

"This initiative enables Skype to be part of the room-based enterprise video conferencing market," David Gurle, vice president and general manager of Skype Enterprise, said in a statement. "With the 'consumerization of IT,’ whereby people are bringing Skype into the workplace, more enterprises are looking for synergistic solutions like this that include Skype. We’re delighted that LifeSize is helping them address customer demand by delivering enterprise-class video conferencing with Skype."

The software that will enable LifeSize Passport and Skype video calling will be available for download this month.

LifeSize is battling in a market populated with a growing number of players, from Cisco Systems, Polycom and Hewlett-Packard to Radvision. Along with building out its portfolio, LifeSize also is looking to partnerships to help it compete. Most recently, LifeSize executives announced in February that their lineup of HD video conferencing products, including the 220 Series and Passport offerings, now interoperates with Microsoft’s Lync communications platform, and later this year will be qualified to work with the software giant’s Communications Service 2007 R2.

For more, read the eWEEK article: LifeSize Brings Passport HD Video Conferencing to Skype.

This article was originally published on 2011-04-19