If you’re one of the 25 per cent of Skype users who make Skype to Skype video calls, it’s worth checking-out the new Logitech webcam range which, in partnership with the VoIP provider, enable 50 per cent better video quality than calls made on previous Logitech units using competing video-calling providers, according to Logitech.
Called ‘High Quality Video Calling’ (HQV), the technology utilises one of three purpose-built Logitech webcams – Sphere AF, Pro for Notebooks and Pro 9000 – which, in conjunction with the latest Skype version 3.6 Beta or the 3.6 Gold version due for release later this month, offer 640 x 480 pixels of resolution at 30 frames per second, which is a leap ahead of the 320 x 420 pixels at 15 frames per second offered by the old system.
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|The Logitech QuickCam Pro 9000 (pictured) offers 640 x 480 pixels and a Carl Zeiss lens.|
To experience the smoother movements, clearer and bigger picture, users will need high speed broadband at 380+ kbps upload speeds and a dual core processor.
According to Logitech general manager, George Saad, only 25 per cent of the Australian computer-using market is also using webcams, meaning penetration still has a long way to go.
However, Saad believes the market will rise, especially due to technological advancements such as these new Logitech units.
“Experience helps people improve their spend. The more they use a webcam, the more they will crave higher and higher quality, expanding the market and ultimately leading them to our HQV webcams,” he said at today’s official partnership launch in Sydney, also citing that the built-in webcam in notebooks market is a blessing in disguise for the manufacturer, helping to penetrate the remaining 75 per cent of computer users without a webcam.
The partnership isn’t the first time Skype has joined forces with a webcam-maker, with numerous players offering units compatible with the VoIP software. Skype Asia Pacific head of business development and marketing, Chris Lewis, didn’t rule out the possibility of the VoIP provider partnering with other HQV manufacturers in the future, and instead stated that “for now” Logitech is Skype’s manufacturer of choice.
“There’s no doubt Logitech is the premium webcam manufacturer at the moment,” he said.
All three webcams use Windows-based software and plug into a high speed USB 2.0 port.
Logitech QuickCam Pro 9000 $149
Logitech QuickCam Pro for Notebooks $149
Logitech QuickCam Sphere AF $199