My younger brother flys a plane between Kununurra and Darwin, dropping off passengers at the Lake Argyle Diamond Mine. He tells me that the other day, his co-pilot pointed out that a warning light was going off on his dashboard. The light was very dim, and it was around sunset and difficult to see. While they were discussing the likely hood of there actually being a fire in the engine, a series of alarms went off, waking up and scaring the sh*t out of everyone in the plane. It turned out later that it was just a loose wire going into the sensor, but it was certainly an exciting “day at the office” for him.
Now the exciting thing about this, is he told me all this via a video conference. Both of us have a broadband internet connection, have downloaded the internet telephone software skype, and plugged in a web cam. The cost of this video conference was a $69pm internet connection and a $49 web cam.
I compare this to a traditional Video conferencing system. I am led to believe that this costs around $170 to apply to have a link setup, then many thousands of dollars to actually run it. In fact a detective friend indicated that its normally cheaper to fly someone to Australia to give evidence, than use Video.
Anyway, the link with my brother wasn’t perfect. However cost virtually nothing and accurately conveyed all his feelings. He could also pick up his webcam and show me the colour of his undies, so to speak.
It was strange to have a video conference with him, because normally we don’t have much to say. Normally its : Hi..Hi..Nothing new here….Nothing new here either…oh well… bye…bye. However the one time he did have something to say, it was fantastic. Its occurred to me that it would be a great service solution. Most of the time it would be useless, but that one time in 100, where someone could actually show you the part that’s broken. It would be a clear differentiator of my business.
Skype can be downloaded at www.skype.com and the camera I am using is a Logitech Webcam Family at http://www.logitech.com/index.cfm/webcam_communications/webcams/devices/254&cl=au,en