Google Buys in to Video Conferences

Google never seems to cease with the acquisitions. This time, the web search giant has swallowed video-conferencing software from Swedish company Marratech AB as well as their technical team, which will continue to be located in Sweden. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed. Marratech's video-conferencing software is based on research that began in 1995 at the Centre for Distance-Spanning Technology at Lulea university of Technology, Sweden. The software employs an interactive whiteboard and application sharing and works on PCs running Mac, Linux or Windows.

In a blog post, Google said it bought the software to "enable from- the-desktop participation for Googlers in videoconference meetings wherever there's an Internet connection." The Google spokesperson did not explain how Google plans to make the video-conference software available to Internet users. One possibility is that Google will include the software as a part of Google Apps Premier Edition, a suite of hosted applications targeted at the same enterprise market traditionally dominated by Microsoft Office.

News source: InternetNews

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Yes, that was the price tag.

It's funny, I had a lecture by this guy when I went to LTU. They must be pretty happy -- there's only 10 employees at Marratech! We got to use the app too, and it's basically a tool that integrates chat, video conferencing and allows a user connect to conferences a bit like in the way one get to see a list of channels on IRC and can pick a channel to join. Not all rooms are public or visible in such lists of course, but that how I remember it worked anyway. It was a version of 1998/9 though so it has probably evolved a bit today. Back then it was mostly just used internally by univesities for lectures.