Video telephone, or “video calling,” refers to a phone equipped with a camera and screen that allows for visual communication in the moment. It was first anticipated in the 1960s, but initial attempts were hindered by low bandwidth and high costs. With the advent of high-speed cable and DSL, videophoning on computers gained popularity, leading to the introduction of mobile devices powered by Apple and Android. Skype’s 2006 release of free video calling to the world marked the beginning of a new era in video communication.
VIDEO TELEPHONE: A Brief History
Videophone, also known as video calling or video conferencing, is a technology that allows people to communicate visually and in real-time, using their cameras and screens to see and hear each other no matter where they are in the world.
FAQs about Videophones
What is a videophone?
A videophone is a phone equipped with a camera and screen that allows users to make video calls, also known as video telephony or video conferencing.
When was the videophone introduced?
The concept of videophones has been around since the late 19th century, but it wasn’t until the 1964 New York World’s Fair that AT&T introduced its Picturephone, which was the first commercially available videophone.
Why did videophones not become popular earlier?
Videophones were hindered by the low bandwidth of the phone lines and the high cost of entry, which made it difficult for people to access the technology. Additionally, the lack of available vendors meant that competition was low which resulted in sluggish improvements in the technology.
The Evolution of Videophones
After the 1964 World’s Fair, it took around four decades to develop the technology into something practical for everyday use. Videophoning on computers via software gained popularity due to advances in high-speed cable and DSL, which led to innovations such as Skype, Google Hangouts, and Zoom.
In 2006, Skype changed the game by offering free video calling to everyone in the world. From this point on, Apple and Android developed mobile devices with built-in cameras and screens, which made video calling accessible on the go. Nowadays, video calling is ubiquitous, and numerous applications such as Facetime, Duo, and WhatsApp allow people to communicate visually with ease.
Videophones have come a long way since the first Picturephone was introduced back in 1964. With the advancements in the internet and mobile technology, video calling has become an accessible and convenient form of communication for people across the globe. Regardless of where someone is or what device they are using, video conferencing is now just a tap away.