HP has introduced an online studio that aims to better mimic face-to-face meetings.
The Halo Collaboration Studio features a specially designed room with three plasma screens and seating for up to six people.
Studio-quality audio and lighting create a life-like image of the meeting participants in an identical studio at another location.
Special software calibrates the colour and image settings, and data is sent over a dedicated high speed network to minimise network delays.
In addition to the televised images of the people in the room, workers can share the images on a computer screen and use a special overhead high-magnification camera to zoom in on objects on the table.
Halo was designed in part by Steven Spielberg's DreamWorks movie studio, one of HP's premier reference customers. The project will allow design teams in different offices to meet in a lifelike setting while cutting back on travel time.
Each room costs about $550,000 with volume discounts available. Network and service fees make up for another $18,000 a month for US customers.
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