Back to the Future: Cisco reportedly plans residential telepresence

In a fact mirroring fiction story, sources say Cisco (Nasdaq: CSCO) will launch its telepresence product for personal use, possibly with Comcast (Nasdaq: CMCSA) and Verizon (NYSE: VZ) and perhaps with AT&T (NYSE: T). The product, which has been used fictionally by such characters as the President of the United States on 24, would bring to life a videophone vision that got major screen time during the 1980s Back to the Future trilogy.

According to sources who claim to know what's going on, Cisco hopes to get the price right with a $200 heavily subsidized bottom price point for a small unit and a more believable $500 price point with less subsidization.

Because the Cisco unit delivers HD quality video, it is expected to compete with (and Cisco probably hopes slaughter) other video calling players like Skype and even WorldGate Communications (OTC BB: WGAT.OB), which has been hawking its Ojo videophone model for years. Answers to many questions about the product could be provided as early as next week when Cisco holds a press event to "see a new Cisco consumer experience."

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