LifeSize is one of the upstart market entrants for Telepresence. LifeSize was formed by some folks from PolyCom who decided they could reinvent the wheel, or in this case: the video codec. They were acquired not too long ago by LogiTech, the peripheral manufacturer. LifeSize is a completely different play than Cisco, as their pricing is a factor of magnitude less. They currently dominate the cost-effective end of the market and they have a tremendous amount of systems deployed today.
LifeSize has a pretty diverse product suite but it basically boils down to a few competitive differentiators:
- Cost-Effective: their top codec is under $30,000 and their quasi 48-port bridge is under $70,000 (we’ll get into that in a second)
- Low Bandwidth: Whereas their competition needs large dedicated connections, LifeSize can achieve 720p with less than 1mbit of throughput
- No Feature Keys: You buy a codec with every feature unlocked
The case LifeSize has to make is that they are a good enough fit to displace other vendors from the competition. They have the lowest price of entry in the market, and they have amazing video quality for the price, but it is not immersive telepresence. LifeSize doesn’t dictate room conditions or require large dedicated connections, it just sort of works and that’s a beautiful thing. Add to that the relatively minor cost of their maintenance contracts and you’ve got a pretty solid product portfolio.
Can LifeSize compete with Cisco? Yes. Can they take the ultra-highend market away? That remains to be seen.