Tag Archives: Cisco

Day 12: How to Dial with a Cisco-TANDBERG Remote

This post continues our 20 Day Challenge to understand the technical aspects of videoconferencing, particularly the section on dialing.

Most parts of dialing are straight forward. Enter the numbers and connect. However there are some unique features or issues with each remote that we want to share.

Special thank you to Lori Colwill for her assistance with this post.

How to Dial

  • Press each number and be sure to enter the “*.” button after each octet. This may add a * instead of a . in between each set until after you get the third set of numbers entered. Then it will automatically switch the *’s to the dots. Remember the language of an IP address, though. The address is still correctly referred to with “dots” in between the numbers, not “star” or “asterisk”.
  • Access the directory, if it is set up, and dial directly from there without entering any numbers.
  • If you dial an IP address and arrive at a screen and if there is audio, listen to what it is saying to you. Codian bridges are “talky” bridges and will present you with an entry queue or auto-attendant. You can navigate this screen by using the far end camera control on your remote and the the up and down arrow keys. When you arrive at the conference where you should be, press enter.

How to Dial an Alias

First of all, you may be given the number as either of these formats: alias@IP (1234@ or IP##alias (

Polycom users may give you an IP## alias number to dial. The TANDBERG remote cannot dial IP##alias. You may be able to turn it around and dial with the alias@IP format, depending on how the other site is set up.

  • Newer TANDBERG remotes (TRC5) have an @ sign on the 1 button, so it’s easy to enter by pressing again.
  • Older TANDBERG remotes (TRC3 and TRC4) don’t have an @ sign. But there are two ways to get around this.
    • Web interface: If you have access to the web interface for the TANDBERG system, enter it there. Even better, put it in the address book so you can get to it again.
    • Via the remote: To get the @ sign, follow these steps: Hold down the # sign (note that in the entry box it switches from 123 to abc). Then press the 1 twice (that enters the @ sign).  Then hold down the # sign again to go back to numbers. However using this procedure negates the use of the *. button. You will have to use this same method to switch back to alphanumeric mode to get the dots entered in between each octect.

Pay Attention to the Location of the Infrared Receiver

  • If you have a newer TANDBERG where the camera and the codec/box are separate, make sure you point the remote at the infrared receiver on the box.
  • If the remote doesn’t seem to be working well, check the batteries and the direction you’re pointing. Make sure you are pointing towards the infrared receiver.

Remote Control for the iPhone / iTouch / iPad

Vyopta makes a vControl remote that mimics the TANDBERG remote and can be used to control your TANDBERG videoconference system as well as the Codian bridge.

  • It costs $99; which seems a little steep for K12-education. But compare that to $400 for replacing a remote. At least it’s an option to consider.
  • Read reviews and comments of this tool from VTC-Talk.com.


Team-written by Lori Colwill, Janine Lim, Shane Howard, and Roxanne Glaser. The opinions expressed in these posts are based on our collective video conference experience connecting classes across multiple networks to connect them to zoos, museums, experts and other classes during the past 10 years. This series of posts reflects our usage and understanding, not that of any vendor or manufacturer. No one is paying us to write these. We are just sharing what we have learned.

The Shake Up in the VC Market

Are you following all the interesting developments in the videoconferencing market? Here’s an interesting review and analysis of the changes coming down the pike. I highly recommend that you take some time to read it. Here are a few snippets to convince you to read further:

The future of videoconferencing is the software-based codec running on general purpose (albeit high end… for now) general purpose processors connected to a low-cost, high quality HD camera via a USB 3.0 connection. The $20,000+ plastic-camera-on-the-TV-set-on-the-desert-cart dedicated videoconferencing appliance is a business model with the lifespan of an alcoholic fruit fly chain smoking unfiltered camels. The singularity approaches.

[imagine that]…all of the sudden you can purchase a fully functional standards-based HD videoconferencing end-point at every Best Buy, Target, and Wal-Mart in the world…..

This is great news for schools, as I’ve been looking for the H323 (standards based) desktop-ish classroom VC setup (for less than $1000) for over a year now. It really bothers me that all these 21st century classrooms are getting installed without videoconferencing! Tricked-out classrooms with no VC! It’s a travesty! But maybe with a Logitech camera and good echo cancellation mic plus great desktop h323 software it’s actually possible! We won’t have VC in every classroom or school until it is much cheaper and readily available. Purchasable by teachers with little instructional grants from various organizations, or easily acquired with existing tech funds.

So, in my opinion, bring those changes on! We need lower cost easier standards based VC to bring all the great existing VC content to more schools!