Friday, January 11, 2008

Is Video the next Killer App?

How's that for a teaser? I'm not going to get to the bottom of this right now, but maybe I can get some dialog going around this. It's late, it's Friday, we're all tired, but I'm determined to get this post out today and pass on some link love to colleague Peter Csathy.

Peter is the CEO of SightSpeed, a company I've blogged about quite a bit, and is getting a lot of well-deserved attention from many of the bloggers I follow and cite here.

CES was this week, and while not an event I've ever attended, it's hard to ignore all the noise around it. Peter was there, and having seen John Chambers's vision for video and all the noise around that, he's got a vested interest in having an opinion about this. Based on Peter's post - and other accounts I've seen about CES - Cisco's mantra about video being the next killer app was a highlight of the show, and has gotten a lot of attention.

Well, at face value, it's a strong statement, and even though I wasn't there, I'm definitely nodding my head. I heard the same story a few weeks ago at Cisco's C-Scape analyst conference, and video was certainly the biggest takeaway for me. Having seen a few things over those few days, I certainly saw a new side of Cisco and where they're going - and I think they have a pretty good story here.

The sub-story here is SightSpeed, and if video is the next killer app, then Peter's company will be there in spades. Peter's post makes the case for how SightSpeed is shaping up to be the Skype of video - but without the messy baggage around having a corporate parent. Desktop video is not really the focus of Cisco's grand plan, but that's what SightSpeed is all about. If Telepresence is the killer app for the Fortune 500 set, then SightSpeed will be the same for everyone else. Desktop video may not be as sexy, but it has a WAY bigger user base, and with a best-in-class offering, you have to like what SightSpeed is doing. I sure do!

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