The software-only player is expected to be dramatically less expensive than
today’s hardware equivalents, yet deliver comparable performance. It will be
used for chat and conferencing over the broadband Internet at speeds of
400kb/second or greater.
Work on the player is already well advanced, with a beta test currently
running. The two companies expect to launch the product in the second
quarter of 2000, integrating it into FVC.COM’s new Click to Meet video
“By partnering with leading European research lab France Telecom R&D,
we are leveraging their expertise in delivering carrier-class IP solutions
to the market,” said Rich Beyer, president and chief executive officer of
Philippe Alezard, head of videoconferencing solutions of France Telecom said
the new technology will provide key applications for multinational
looking to deploy high audio and video applications within their businesses.
The new application could be one of the most successful ever developed for
the Internet, given the high level of demand for videoconferencing and the
need for less expensive systems. Clearly, its success in Europe and
will depend on whether broadband suppliers can deliver a consistent, high
speed service at a reasonable cost.
France Telecom, with 1999 revenues of over $26 billion, operates in over
75 countries. As well as telephony, data and wireless services it offers
multimedia, Internet, cable TV, broadcast and value-added services.
FVC.COM specializes in broadband video networking, and offers a wide range
of two-way and streaming video systems for Internet-based video calls,
conferences, mail and events.