Logitech Announces Enterprise Focused Webcamby Jason Inofuentes on February 15, 2013 6:06 AM EST
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Logitech has been a big presence in the consumer PC peripheral space for ages, but their latest push follows us all to the office. The Logitech for Business division seeks to leverage the company’s assets to build out products that enhance business-to-business communications. And their latest efforts look a little familiar. Today Logitech is announcing the Logitech Webcam C930e, a 1080p USB camera with a few features specifically for enterprise users.
Looking quite like their last consumer grade camera, the Logitech Webcam HD, the new model borrows some of those units features, including the Carl Zeiss optics and the industrial design. The wide-angle lens helps provide less of a talking head experience on video calls, and could be invaluable if there’s any whiteboarding planned or multiple people on one end of a call. The onboard ISP handles autofocus and exposure adjustments, with the latter something of a necessity in many office environments as overhead fluorescents lead to lots of backlit scenes.
Encoding happens onboard, as well; and implements the H.264 Scalable Video Coding protocol. H.264 SVC allows for variable quality video streams to be encoded on the same bitstream, with the effect of providing a lower bandwidth option when network congestion would have lead to lots of artifacts. This is Logitech’s first video conferencing webcam that comes with SVC, a feature in many enterprise video conferencing solutions.
Out of the box the C930e comes fully compatible with Microsoft Lync and Cisco solutions, along with Skype
certification and will ring in at $109.99 when it arrives this May. Since this isn’t targeting the consumer space (they may be content with the $99.99 Webcam HD), you’ll not find the C930e at Best Buy, but if you’re interested it will be available through sites that cater to enterprise.
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nathanddrews - Friday, February 15, 2013 - linkI was just in a meeting the other day where IT stated that we're rolling out Lync and the authorized webcams are the C930e, B910, and C525. Can't wait to try it out... for work. ;-) I know that Microsoft is using the Skype IP to drive this feature, but are Lync users able to make Skype calls yet?
merrillraman - Friday, February 15, 2013 - linkLync users can call (voice) Skype or vice versa once federation is setup. But the two platforms have different underlying technologies. Skype is p2p while Lync is point to point. Unifying them is not going to be easy, also enterprises maybe wary of p2p. Nevertheless hoping that Microsoft is able to do it!
ltfields - Friday, February 15, 2013 - linkI believe the Skype Federation will be going official at next week's Lync conference in San Diego. Lync calls are p2p as well until you add a third party which converts the call into a hosted conference on the company's Lync servers. Federated calls between a Lync user and Skype user will run through the Lync edge servers in your company's DMZ. I'm not exactly sure how well the integration will work initially, but I can't think they would enable this feature unless it was mostly reliable. We've got a lot of external business contacts that use Skype, so our employees are quite keen on the federation...
BlackPatriot - Friday, February 15, 2013 - linkI'm glad Logitech is moving more into the corporate space, as we're currently using the C920 for our webcams. But what we're really after is a USB PTZ version of the bigger Polycom and Cisco cameras, something that we can use in a meeting room without needing to pay the exorbitant prices for a full hardware codec, especially as so much of our VC traffic goes through desktop apps like Skype and Adobe Connect.
The only one we've found so far is the Vaddio USB cam, but it's limited to 720p because of USB2, despite the fact that the C920 (and presumably the C930e) can do 1080p over USB2 via hardware h.264 encoding. We really need something like that, a step up from a desktop webcam, but without the complexity and mess of a PTZ camera into a capture card (which often has complicated setup and maintenance to keep it working with all the apps) but a step below the $20k+ for a Polycom codec.
carage - Saturday, February 16, 2013 - linkLooks exactly the same as my C920...
aguilpa1 - Monday, February 18, 2013 - linkAnd likely is. This segment of the market is stagnant. These camera's are basically $2 - $3 worth of plastic a small circuit board, tiny sensor, possibly the addition of decoding chip on some models and a lens that is hardly worthy of the Zeiss name since they are plastic, and have no special qualities other then the brand name. The designs are the same as a decade ago yet the price keeps going up.
Pessimism - Thursday, February 21, 2013 - linkYou forgot the fact that they will drop driver support for the camera after 1 or 2 driver releases, leaving you SOL if you ever upgrade your operating system and forcing you to buy another lump of plastic.
coolhund - Monday, February 25, 2013 - linkNo, its really a glass lens and the sensor is a very good one, too, actually surpassing MUCH more expensive cameras if a different lens is used.
I agree on the rest.
I find it pretty funny how they call the C930e a wide-angle camera, while the C920 only has 12 degrees less FoV.
Oh well, I will still try it out, if the software/drivers supplied work at least as good as the ones from the C920. But knowing Logitech, just like it did with their other enterprise cameras, they will prolly have extremely shitty driver support and the driver from the C920 wont work.