Cisco Drops Price of Home Video-Calling System

Cisco Systems has cut the price of its umi video-calling system for consumers, a flashy offering released in October to great fanfare–and widespread criticism about how much it cost.

The network-equipment giant on Monday said it is reducing the price of the existing umi system to $499 from $599, and introduced a $399 version with reduced high-definition resolution that requires a slower Internet connection. The San Jose, Calif., also slashed the price of the monthly service fee for umi to $9.95 a month from $24.99.

Cisco’s system is a home version of its high-end conferencing gear for businesses, which it calls “telepresence” in order to indicate the lifelike quality of the connection. The consumer system includes a camera, set-top device and remote control and connects high-definition TVs to a user’s broadband Internet connection.

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