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5 Reasons SMBs Should Adopt Videoconferencing

As the price and complexity have declined, more SMBs are now deploying in-house video technology.

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In the past, videoconferencing technology has largely been out of reach of most small and midsize business. It was too expensive, too complex, and too inconsistent for them to deploy. Recently, vendors have overcome many of those hurdles, so SMBs are now embracing the technology.

Following are five reasons why a SMB should take a closer look at videoconferencing options.

1. Falling Equipment Prices

Historically, companies would have to make at least a five figure (and often a six figure) investment to deploy a videoconferencing system. Those price dynamics have been shattered, however, as videoconferencing has migrated to the desktop.

"If they want, companies can install a webcam for about $75 and use one of the many free videoconferencing services," said Andrew W. Davis, a senior partner at Wainhouse Research.

The desktop systems are good for one-to-one communication. In addition, pricing for room-based videoconferencing systems has fallen to the $4,000 to $5,000 range for those corporations that are interested in multi-person interactions.

2. No More Bandwidth Issues

"Historically, small and midsize businesses did not have enough network capacity to let employees deploy videoconferencing applications," noted Jayanth Angl, senior research analyst at Info-Tech Research Group.

Recently, bandwidth has become cheaper, and vendors have found clever ways to compress video transmissions so they do not require wide pipes. Consequently, a videoconferencing session now fits in a few hundred Kbps (something most businesses have at their disposal) rather than the multiples Mbps of bandwidth that were required in the past.

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