Orange Business Services (news) [a subsidiary of France Telecom (NYSE:FTE, news, filings)] has expanded its Telepresence Community via an interoperability agreement with Tata Communications (news, filings)'s Global Meeting Exchange. The deal will allow customers of each carrier to conduct Telepresence meetings across the two combined networks. Tata has been one of the most geographically expansive implementers of telepresence, with 33 public rooms across 17 countries and five continents, so the deal materially expands Orange's reach for the service. One of Orange's customers, oil engineering and services firm Technip, beta tested the inter-exchange service with one of its business partners who happens to be a Tata customer.
Interconnection between carrier services is a critical piece of the puzzle for telepresence, and so far there seems to be some willingness to work together on it even amongst rivals - last year, BT and AT&T entered into a similar interconnection agreement. Exchanges of various types have been a hot topic lately, I wonder if we will at some point see the rise of independent, neutral telepresence exchanges or whether this will always be dominated by direct connections by big players.