Lifesize Cloud makes Lifesize one of the most solid players in the space
June 21, 2016

Lifesize Cloud makes Lifesize one of the most solid players in the space

Mike Hamilton | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 8 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User

Overall Satisfaction with Lifesize Video Conferencing

With HDMI being pervasive things are getting easier. If I could do it all over again, I would standardize on better TVs for every room. We tried to re-use all of the TVs and while it has worked, there has been pain in terms of all the different configurations that TVs can have. Run a PoC and do user testing before going forward and consider every piece of the puzzle. We also ran into issues with HDMI switchers for input to LifeSize. Not because of Lifesize - but because of dongles.
We are a fast growing global company. Our employees, from engineering and research to sales and finance use videoconferencing daily to collaborate in meeting rooms and from mobile devices around the world.
  • Calls are easy to make. The directory makes it easy to find people or meeting rooms.
  • Being able to join a conference room from a mobile device is terrific.
  • The support for 40+ participants in a call allows for some great opportunities.
  • Call quality is average to bad in 10-20% of calls with no way to rate a particular call or discover root cause.
  • Support is understaffed.
  • Lifesize needs to think bigger with Cloud. Endpoint management and alerting could be far better. Calendar integration with Gcal is a must for enterprises. Displaying the calendar on the conf room screen would be great. They need to investigate their competition and cherry pick things to add to the service.
Lifesize is great for medium to larger conference rooms. It is less suitable for huddle rooms as the 3x camera crops too much of the FOV for good use in those types of rooms.

Lifesize Video Conferencing Feature Ratings

High quality audio
High quality video
Low bandwidth requirements
Desktop sharing
Calendar integration
Meeting initiation
Record meetings / events
Live chat
Participant roles & permissions

Using Lifesize Video Conferencing

400 - We have had to learn a bit of audio/video skills to support them based on the rooms. We have been able to cross-train our helpdesk on how to support the rooms.
  • Engineering meetings
  • Hack-a-thons
  • Mixed in-office and remote worker meetings
  • Overflow rooms for large meetings
  • If the events service was better we could use it for All Hands - it lacks too many features for that format.
  • Our users complain that laptop calls are not as reliable as Skype - more remote to remote meetings.
  • Our sales team complains that customers can't get reliable audio/video - we don't use it for sales calls - we still use WebEx.
I have a lot of Lifesize hardware and I do like Cloud but I am always watching the market for a company that will finally nail this space. I feel like Lifesize has a solid head start but I hope they can create a vision for the marketplace and execute in a meaningful way.
  • ROI is clear - video meetings are engaging and save travel.
  • The Lifesize hardware allows us to provide easy access to the TV in the room whether in a call or not - the Phone 2 is great due to the intuitive touch screen.
400 - Engineering, finance, legal, executive staff, product, talent, HR

Evaluating Lifesize Video Conferencing and Competitors

Yes - We replaced older non-cloud Lifesize room units that had been purchased used with new Icon 400 and 600 units joined to Cloud.
I would have looked harder at solutions for huddle rooms. I did look at the time but it would have been wise to look more deeply at manufacturers that take huddle rooms into account (if any did). I still don't like the idea that companies have of piecing together consumer grade gear into conferencing equipment. In PoCs that I did do, these types of solutions were loaded with issues.
We evaluated BlueJeans, Google Hangouts (Chromebox for Hangouts), Biba, and Cisco. Lifesize had the absolute best in-room and out of box combined experience. I can literally ship a unit across the world and in 3 questions the unit is on Lifesize Cloud, in the directory, and ready to go with minimal involvement from my team.
  • Product Features
  • Product Usability
  • Existing Relationship with the Vendor
We needed room systems that were baked and made for rooms. The disruptive companies in this space all think that a PC in a room with consumer grade hardware for spearkers and mic is good enough - it isn't. Having said that, don't get lazy Lifesize - the market is loaded with competition.

Lifesize Video Conferencing Implementation

Yes - We did a considerable PoC first to make the room design and evaluate via UAT. We have multiple floors in our HQ and global offices. We opted to do the two largest offices first and then very quickly started rolling in smaller offices. We rolled out Cloud on a larger scale once SSO integration was a feature.
  • Mostly room cabling was the biggest issue - surprises in cable channels run under the floor.
  • One unit out of dozens was bad OOTB.

Lifesize Video Conferencing Support

They seem understaffed. There are smart people there. When I have needed an RMA they are generally pretty solid. I still keep an extra unit of each model around as a precaution.
Their ticketing system is horrible. Rather than being able to reply to a ticket within an email, you have to click on a link inside the ticket to issue a reply.
Knowledgeable team
Problems get solved
No escalation required
Support understands my problem
Not kept informed
Difficult to get immediate help
No - I am already an enterprise customer. I am not aware of any other support offering.
Yes - Hard to say - I lost track. I think it made it into some roadmap somewhere. The bug had to do with the ability of a party joining a multi-party call to over-ride presenter in a "Lecture Mode" call. That should not be able to happen - of course it technically follows the rules of the spec, but lecture mode has implications of continuity.
I had a fairly expensive unit with a really hard to troubleshoot issue. They did turn around an RMA pretty quickly even though we never got to a root cause. The RMA unit did fix the issue.

Using Lifesize Video Conferencing

We rolled out Lifesize with minimal instructions and high adoption. The touchpad on the Phone 2 is solid from a usability perspective. The touchpad on the Phone 2 allows us to remove remotes. The whole Icon experience is so much better than the color multi-function buttons on the room units (which were confusing to people). Thankfully the room units also work well with the Phone 2.
Like to use
Relatively simple
Easy to use
Technical support not required
Well integrated
Quick to learn
Feel confident using
  • The touchpad of the Icon series phone unit makes using the systems a breeze. I love that the on-screen menu hides itself - with the touchpad on the phone we actually remove the remotes from the room.
  • Dialing calls from the directory are dead simple
  • Setting up a new unit OOTB is very simple (although the UI could be a little better when picking timezones)
  • Adding an audio only call requires that the unit be joined to a PBX. There are odd issues from time to time based on the order of adding a secondary SIP call.
  • Endpoint configuration for cloud joined units should be done in the cloud. It is silly to have to login to each unit to make changes. I should be able to template configurations and apply them from the Cloud UI.
  • System issues should appear in the Cloud management tool. If there is a ! warning on a unit, why do I need to find out from my users? This should be clearly handled since the unit is cloud joined. It would be even better if I could get alerts when there are issues with my hardware.
  • Bugs in the system itself (room units) are just obnoxious. Reboot almost always solves them. Lifesize would benefit greatly from collecting info on the room units and correlating that with bug tracking.
Yes - The mobile app is one of the most solid apps they have. The only issue I really have with it is that the mute/unmute indicators look like buttons - too similar in UI appearance. The button and the state should be represented in the same position.
The mobile app works surprisingly well over 4G.
You should ALWAYS favor audio quality - I'd rather lose video and have perfect audio if I have to make a choice. Losing quality on both is useless.