Array Telepresence tech transforms regular videoconferencing into immersive telepresence

[Howard Lichtman, founder and president of the Human Productivity Lab, an independent consultancy and research firm that helps organizations design visual collaboration strategies and deploy solutions (and a keynote speaker at PRESENCE 2009 in Los Angeles), is also Chief Creative/Commercial Officer of Array Telepresence, which takes a different approach to creating immersive telepresence experiences for the high-end TP market. Details are below from Telepresence Options, and a video interview with the company principals is available here. –Matthew]

Array Telepresence graphic

Array Telepresence Debuts Immersive Telepresence Using Your Existing Videoconferencing System at Enterprise Connect

March 16, 2015

Array Telepresence, a start-up telepresence solution provider is debuting a new system at Enterprise Connect that enables immersive telepresence in typical conference rooms using an organization’s existing videoconferencing system. The Array DX Dual Camera Module and Array’s Equal-i 2S Image Processor work together to dramatically improve the videoconferencing scene before handing it to either a hardware or software-based videoconferencing codec. The system brings the farthest participants “Up Close and Personal”, “Equal-i-zes” the size of the farthest participants to the size of the closest participants, improves the eye-line, conceals the camera, improves the meeting format, and powers dual displays creating a wide-format view into the remote scene bringing in the eye’s peripheral vision increasing the sense of immersion. The Equal-i 2S Image Processor combines both images from the dual headed DX Camera Module into a single video stream allowing a single videoconferencing codec to power dual displays. The Equal-i System is $13,995 upgrade if you already have a videoconferencing codec and goes on sale this month. The company is demonstrating the new system at Enterprise Connect Booth 1635.

The Equal-i DX Camera Module and Equal-i 2S Image Processor use Equal-i Technology to dramatically improve the quality of traditional videoconferencing systems. The Equal-i technology brings the furthest participants “up close and personal” increasing the pixel count on the farthest person by 6 and ½ times that of a conventional Pan-Tilt-Zoom videoconferencing camera. The system also improves the meeting format, conceals the camera, and improves the eye-line. The system also powers dual displays with HD video using a single videoconferencing codec and bit stream, creating a wide-format, immersive view of the remote scene with no discernable impact on latency.

The new Equal-i DX Camera Module, the first of three camera modules the company is bringing to market in the coming months, requires just 4mm between dual displays and sits between the displays at perfect vertical eye-line where it sits on and is concealed by the display bezels. The camera plugs into Array’s Equal-i 2S Image Processor which applies custom image improvement algorithms to improve the scene before handing the video stream to the codec for the trip across a network.

Measurably Better Than $250,000+ Group Telepresence Systems

For years telepresence has been associated with $250,000+ group telepresence systems sold by Cisco, Digital Video Enterprises, Polycom, and Teliris which use a “split table” approach to precisely position participants in engineered environments for a life-size across-the-table meeting experience. The systems are costly, use lots of bandwidth, have visible cameras, have horizontal gaze angle issues, require lots of space, cut off your head if you stand up, and have a poor seating format for local meetings because they seat everyone next to each other requiring you to lean around the people next to you to talk locally.

Array solves these problem in spades. The Array approach works with existing videoconferencing systems and conference room furniture, has a concealed camera, stand up capture without cutting heads off, uses less bandwidth, requires less physical space, better vertical gaze angle (perfect vertical eye-line), better horizontal gaze angle, more primary participants (8, 10, 12, or 14 depending on size of the table vs 6 in most telepresence group systems) and has a better format for local conversations where the local participants are easily visible to each other without having to lean around each other to talk.

Revolutionary Capabilities: “Crop & Stack”

The IP & Equal-i camera make possible revolutionary videoconferencing functionality including: “Crop & Stack” The ability to crop 25% of the top and bottom of the scene after image improvement leaving a “filmstrip” view of essentially life-size “head & torsos” with clearly visible facial features. This unique capability allows an Equal-i system to send an image-improved view to single-screen, non-Equal-i videoconferencing systems where the system can “stack” two rows of 4-7+ participants per row depending on the size of the participants’ table. Non-Equal-i participants can also elect to receive a letterbox view of both sides of the table on a single display.

The Image Processor also acts as a video switcher allowing the system to switch between sending the particpants and data:

Equal-i Room-to-Equal-i Room: You can start a meeting in full immersive mode for introductions and conversation and then promote data to primacy on one screen while still seeing 4-7+ image improved life-size head and torsos OR the full scene in letterbox on the other.

Equal-i Room-to-Standards-Based Videoconferencing System: When connecting from an Equal-i equipped room to a traditional videoconferencing system with a single display you can switch between the participants (Crop & Stack OR Letterbox view) and data.

Happy Customers and Happy Pro-AV and Systems Integrators

Array Chief Creative/Commercial Officer Howard Lichtman states, “The Equal-i system allows organizations that use video to dramatically improve the quality of the experience for users which has proven to improve satisfaction which improves usage which translates into improved ROI for videoconferencing. For the Pro-AV community and systems integrators it gives them the opportunity to upgrade or refresh existing videoconferencing systems which drives associated spending OR design new telepresence environments which delight users at 1/20th the cost of existing telepresence solutions.”

See It Live at Enterprise Connect

At the Array booth, number 1635, attendees will get a hands-on demonstration of the patent-pending technology driving the Array Telepresence experience. Herold Williams, the company’s CEO and founder, and C2O Howard Lichtman will also be giving a talk daily [March 16-19] at 4:30PM, “Q & A with Herold and Howard.”

The Equal-i DX Camera and Image Processor will begin shipping later this month and can be purchased from some of the world’s leading Pro-AV and systems integrations shops including: AVI-SPL, Corporate Initiatives (Australia), Draycor, MCW Solutions, Ultra Active (Hong Kong), Solutors (Scandinavia) , and YorkTel. Distribution in Europe is being handled by Imago ScanSource.

To schedule a private meeting or demonstration with Array at Enterprise Connect, Please email


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