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Polycom and TWICE Launch Polycom Collaborations Around the Planet: A Global Directory and Professional Network for Educators Using Video Conferencing
Sep 19, 2007 (08:09 AM EDT)


PLEASANTON, Calif. and CLINTON TOWNSHIP, Mich., Sept. 19 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Polycom, Inc. , the world's leading provider of unified collaborative solutions, and Two Way Interactive Connections in Education (TWICE), Michigan's organization for videoconferencing in education, today announce Polycom Collaborations Around The Planet (PCATP) a global collaboration tool and resource for educators.

PCATP is a free collaboration tool available to video conferencing educators in the classroom, training room, medical or government training facility. It is designed to connect individuals, content providers and administrators for the purpose of exchanging ideas, conducting research, building curriculum, creating programs and collaborating with distance and blended learning environments. PCATP allows educators to find collaborative partners, update profiles and share information.

"Incorporating the latest Web 2.0 technology into our arsenal of education tools allows us to increase access to distance learning resources for educators in a 21st century education environment," said Craig Lynar, vice president of vertical markets, Video Solutions Group, Polycom. "We recognize the capabilities of new collaborative tools as another instrument to assist educators in creating the most powerful blended and distance learning programs. Collaboration with peers through PCATP increases the usefulness of video conferencing technology and programs by bridging the gaps between educators throughout the world."

"Increasing videoconference collaborative projects can provide students a window to the world. One of the main obstacles for teachers is finding partners who have access to the technology and are interested in collaborating," said Roxanne Glaser, distance learning coordinator with Education Service Center Region 12 in Waco, Texas. "The Collaborations around the Planet networking tool will streamline this process and enable exponential growth in high impact curriculum connections throughout the world. This is the missing link that will bring content to global classrooms."

PCATP is a natural extension of Polycom's strategy to provide collaborative visual communications and resources for educators in multiple environments. The company provides access to content, information, training and resources that go beyond the limitations of the classroom walls. Blended learning environments allow instructors to motivate and expose students to people, places and experiences without the traditional restrictions of time limitations or geographical barriers. By removing distance and helping people communicate through video, students and teachers can become more innovative, efficient and productive, make better decisions, learn and remember more and have greater satisfaction with their education experience.

"The use of video conferencing technology has been growing substantially among educators over the past few years," said Janine Lim, instructional technology consultant of TWICE. "Incorporating a global directory of people to Polycom's other available resources, including the online content access program and services, will form a community of video conferencing users and should serve to further grow the use of video among educators worldwide."

Polycom customers using the service will benefit from additional features such as a direct link to the Polycom Content Database and access to Polycom promotions and special events.

"Polycom's PCATP professional networking is simple, easy-to-use and is proving to increase collaboration, utilization and dependence upon distance and blended learning solutions throughout the world," said Dr. John G. Flores, chief executive officer, United States Distance Learning Association.

Polycom Collaborations Around the Planet is accessible through Polycom's Education Web site, http://www.polycom.com/education/PCATP

About TWICE

Two Way Interactive Connections in Education (TWICE) is Michigan's organization for videoconferencing in K-12 education. TWICE promotes and supports collaborative connections for the benefit of all students. TWICE focuses on five main areas of videoconference support: Field Trips, Shared Classes, Professional Development, Technical Support, and Collaborative Projects such as Read Around the Planet, a program put on by TWICE and sponsored by Polycom that celebrates the National Education Association's Read Across America and helps classrooms to implement interactive video conferencing to connect with other classrooms "around the planet" to share reading activities. TWICE also supports Michigan Week, ASK (Authors, Specialists, Knowledge) and other collaborative projects.

About Polycom

Polycom, Inc. is the worldwide leader in unified collaborative communications (UCC) that maximize the efficiency and productivity of people and organizations by integrating the broadest array of high-definition video, wired and wireless voice, and content solutions to deliver the ultimate collaborative experience. Polycom's high quality, standards-based conferencing and collaboration solutions are easy to deploy and manage, as well as intuitive to use. Supported by an open architecture, they integrate seamlessly with leading telephony, workplace wireless telephony, and presence-based networks. With its market-driving technologies, best-in-class products, alliance partnerships, and world-class service, Polycom is the smart choice for organizations seeking proven solutions and a competitive advantage from on-demand communications and collaboration. For additional information, call 800-POLYCOM or visit the Polycom Web site at http://www.polycom.com .

Polycom reserves the right to modify future product plans at any time. Products and/or related specifications referenced in this press release are not guaranteed, and will be delivered on a when and if available basis.

Polycom and the Polycom logo are registered trademarks of Polycom in the U.S. and various countries. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners. (C)2007, Polycom, Inc. All rights reserved.

CONTACT: Nicole Hegg of VisiTech PR, +1-303-752-3552, ext.230, Nicole@VisiTechPR.com, for Polycom, Inc.

Web site: http://www.polycom.com/