Skype and Panasonic to Add Skype Software to Viera HDTVs

ces_venue.jpgPanasonic and Skype today announced a collaboration that will enable consumers to make voice and video calls over Skype on Panasonic’s line of 2010 Viera Cast-enabled HDTVs planned for launch in spring 2010. To conduct a Skype video call on a Viera Cast-enabled HDTVs, a specially-designed high-performance Panasonic camera, which is sold as a separate accessory, is simply plugged into the television. The camera includes a special microphone system that can easily pick up sound from couch-distance. Plus, it will deliver up to 720p high definition video quality depending on the consumer’s internet bandwidth. This collaboration takes Skype to another platform, in addition to the computer and the mobile phone, which is the technology heart of the home, the television.

Panasonic’s Viera Cast feature has been widely acknowledged for its distinctive internet application, allowing the consumer to view targeted sites on a large HDTV, rather than a small computer screen. Viera Cast requires no external box or PC. Viera Cast is accessed via a single button on the television remote control and there is no fee to use the Viera Cast.