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Escient to Reveal Media Server Plans this Fall

D&M-owned Escient, one of the pioneers in the media server category, informed dealers this week that it is discontinuing its DVD-centric Vision line so it can focus on a new “roadmap” toward products with HD video capabilities.

According to senior VP of sales and marketing, Phil Cohn, Escient will still support the Vision install base with software upgrades, such as one that integrates the company’s media server with Sony’s new 400-disc BDP-CX7000ES Blu-ray Disc changer. That Q4 release will occur around the same time that Cohn’s team reveals its fall plans for a new HD-focused media server solution.

The discontinued, but still supported, Vision line from Escient

“We’re transitioning to a new roadmap, really,” Cohn said. “We anticipate that once the roadmap is finalized in the fall, we’ll share it with the market and it will address a lot of the emerging trends and technologies in the market, including HD, that that target market for Vision is asking for.”

Cohn said that, like with any business, especially one that’s so technologically driven, his team is always evaluating trends in the market and the changes and the ebb and flow of consumer behavior. That evaluation, through the normal course of business, led to the company’s decision to focus on a new product line. “We’ve been evaluating the road map for a while now and the timing seemed to be right for us as more and more of the integration of HD and shifting trends of how users are getting their content,” Cohn added. “Vision seemed to be addressing a market that was evolving and moving in a different direction. “

Because Escient is still finalizing the road map, Cohn was not ready to share any specifics. “I can tell you that the general feeling is that there are ways that people are capturing content that are different from what we’ve addressed today, and we’re going to continue to build innovate and high-performance products in this category and we’ll finalize that plan this fall,” he said.

Escient’s Vision line, which Cohn referred to as a product that served “a certain market at a certain time and at a certain place,” reached its 5th generation at last year’s CEDIA EXPO, with the $6,000 (MSRP) VS200 Media Server/Player. Featuring HDMI 1.3 capability, the VS200 was designed to allow users to store movies, music, and digital photos and instantly enjoy them from any room in the home through the high-definition Escient User Interface. A hard drive-based component, the VS200 features dual 1TB drives, with RAID 1 redundancy.