Crazy business idea: videoconferencing event/party spaces =)

Yes, videoconferencing should be the kind of thing anyone can get working at home, but technical glitches often come up.

I think there’s a market for at least one company that can set up an event space with a good screen, a computer, a reliable network connection, and a sound system. It beats having lots of people clustered around one laptop and spending most of the time struggling with technical issues. Market: business meetings during the day, globally dispersed families / friends at night and on weekends.

Anyone with that kind of business in Manila, please contact my mom. =)

  • Dennis Groves

    Hi Sacha,

    It is such a great idea that somebody has done exactly this already:
    they are known as Apple Computer. :-)

    • http://sachachua.com Sacha Chua

      The laptop my mom was having all these problems on? A MacBook.

      No matter how pretty or easy-to-use a computer is, it’s no match for forgotten passwords, flaky Wifi connections, and high stress. And while it’s fine to have maybe four or so people gathered around a computer and speaking into the webcam or the built-in microphone, if you want twenty people to enjoy the experience, you could use a better sound system. =)

  • http://blog.melchua.com Mel

    This might make a nice companion/add-on to existing internet cafes in the Philippines. In the US, I’ve seen office rental companies that specialize in short-term “office/executive space” (we used a space like this for ILXO last summer) and you can rent, by the hour, meeting rooms with the functionalities you described. I’ve never heard of families using them to talk with relatives, though; that’s a neat use case.

  • http://fairhaven.typepad.com rjh

    The first killer is decent audio to match the video. I spend spend 15-20 hours a week in various forms of teleconferencing. It’s amazing how many ways the audio bridging can screw up. Then you mix in the VOIP systems that share the cable with video and go into static bursts whenever the video is changing a lot. Then you have the horrific problems of mixing a bunch of people in a single room with various others on headphones and speakerphones.

    The family video conferences are a lot easier. Once we worked through various setup issues, it works great. (I’ve got family at three corners of North America, spanning four time zones. The video conferencing is very effective, even over the mediocre links to Alaska.)

  • Dennis Groves

    I agree with rjh,

    I always have a good conference 1:1 with my son, sister, mother, father & friends. It is when I have to conference at work where things break down really fast. 5 people – Voip and video, speakers phones and globally distributed – then it is a giant pain, with various problems.

    Sacha, what was/is the problem – my Mac is my fail-safe system; although I am running emacs on it. :)

    Dennis

  • Steph Sy
  • ebargados

    i believe this is what you are looking for:

    http://www.lifesize.com

    High Definition Enterprise Class Video Conferencing. All you need is a good LCD or Plasma and a decent internet connection.

    Let me know if you need more info. I sell, install and support a wide variety of video conferencing solutions from LifeSize and Polycom.

  • http://sachachua.com Sacha Chua

    It’s not about the tech, it’s about people’s access to the tech. =)