Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Mr. Dudas Goes to Washington! Sorenson Media Meets With Congress to Talk Tech Today

He's no Jimmy Stewart, but he certainly knows tech and digital media. Our very own David Dudas -- VP Video Solutions and resident Tech Evangelist -- is on Capitol Hill in D.C. today to talk tech with key members of the Obama Administration, as well as leading members of Congress (both on the Senate and House side). Sorenson Media is honored to have been invited for this event, as it is one of only a few privately held companies selected for these meetings.

OK, Now This Is Officially Insane ... Pandora's Valuation, That Is

Pandora's IPO is tomorrow -- and the just-upped price per share now values the company at $2.6 billion.

One word -- "insanity." As in, "this is insane." As in, "is there any relation of value to reality here?"

I certainly don't see it (and I am a long-time Pandora user!). Here's why -- click here for my earlier posts on the subject.

Skype Video From Your Couch -- It's Comcastic!

Skype and Comcast -- well, really Microsoft & Comcast now -- just announced a new deal to bring Skype video chat into your living room and onto your flat screen TV. The idea is that you and your family will now be able to easily -- and together -- video chat with grandma from your couch. And, grandma doesn't need to be expecting your video call. Instead, she can simply be watching her flat screen TV and -- voila! -- she receives an on-screen notification that you are trying to video call her. She then has the option of accepting your call right there and then -- or, god forbid! -- rejecting or ignoring your call! (Would grandma ever do that? Maybe if "Dancing with the Stars" is on like my mom!)

This ain't a new idea. We were actively discussing this same concept when I was CEO of video chat leader SightSpeed several years ago (SightSpeed was acquired by Logitech in 2008). But, the execution here is quite a bit different -- and it is powerful. Comcast, of course, has thousands of technicians who enter your home to set up cable systems -- now, they can easily upsell the specialized equipment needed to make living room video calling convenient. And, there are 23 million of you Comcast customers out there in the U.S. So, even if only a small percentage "take" that service, that could be real incremental revenues to both Skype and Comcast.

Will this be easy enough to pass the "grandma test"? That remains to be seen. But, video chat in the living room will become a meaningful reality very, very soon (just like video chat has become a very, very big reality on your mobile small screen) ...