Telecommunications a division of Information Technologies

Telecom: Video Conferencing

Table of Contents

  1. General Description
  2. Advantages of Using Video Conferencing
  3. Sample Applications
  4. What does it cost?
  5. How do I schedule a video conference?

General Description

The Video Conferencing (V/C) system allows face-to-face meetings among participants in different locations with the economy and convenience approaching that of a telephone call. The system supports two-way full-motion video, audio, graphics and data communications at data rates ranging from 56Kbps to 2.048 Mbps on digital networks.

U Maine has a Polycom video conferencing system. We can connect with either an IP network address or through ISDN dial up phone lines which operate at speeds up to 384K. This service is available to UM departments and non-profit organizations during our office hours, M-F, 8-4:30 pm.

The system is easy to use, yet highly functional. It looks like television. More importantly, it feels like television, though new users will notice a half second built in delay with the audio and video.

Video conferencing not only saves money, but actually helps the user conduct business faster and better. Just as the facsimile machine transformed and expanded hard copy transfer of documents, and cellular telephones in automobiles expanded the work day and reduce down-time while traveling, so will video-conferencing pay for itself over and over again.

Advantages of Using Video Conferencing

  • Increases productivity
  • Reduces travel time
  • Reduces travel expense
  • Allows for more participation

Sample Applications Using the Video Conferencing System

  • Collaborate with colleagues from other institutions via V/C
  • Conduct seminars/presentations via V/C
  • Reduce job search costs--meet potential candidates via V/C
  • Have experts address issues of interest to your organization via V/C
  • Take advantage of the merits of distance education via V/C

What does it cost?

When scheduling a video conference there is usually a fee for using the equipment at BOTH sites. The cost of equipment at other sites can vary greatly. However, the cost structure for using UMaine equipment is outlined below.

You have two options when scheduling U Maine equipment. The connection can be made through the network by using ISDN phone lines or by using an IP network address. Option 1 is a connection made by dialing out with an ISDN phone line. Option 2 is a connection made through the network using an IP address.

1. ISDN (we place a high speed 384K call)

      a/ U Maine System $75hr.

      b/ Nonprofit $100/hr.

2. IP Network Address

      a/ U Maine System n/c

      b/ Nonprofit $25/hour

Cancellation Policy

A 24 hour cancellation policy exists. If you do not give a 24 hour notice or if you book the room and don't show, you will be charged $25.00.

How Do I Schedule a Video Conference?

All video conferencing must be arranged in advance. You must check the availability of the our site as well as the remote site. To check on the availability of UMaine Video Conferencing unit, call: +1 207 581-1610 or email: robin [dot] pepin [at] umit [dot] maine [dot] edu

You will have to provide us with the following information when arranging a video conference:

  1. Date, time and length of video conference and how many people will be attending.
  2. What type of unit we be connecting to and the type of connection (i.e. ISDN or IP Network).
  3. The remote site dial-up number(s) or IP network address.
  4. A contact name, phone number and e-mail address for the remote site.

NOTE: Make sure you get a price quote on the cost associated with booking the remote location equipment -- the prices listed in this brochure only covers the cost of UMaine equipment.

After the above information has been provided, we'll contact the remote site and schedule a test to make sure that both sites are compatible prior to the actual video conference.

Proper parking is the responsibility of those coming to campus. Visitors must go to the Public Safety Building to obtain a temporary parking permit to avoid parking tickets.

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