One of the most difficult questions to answer in the use of Telepresence is the cost benefit conundrum. As this paper illustrates, there are significant benefits to telepresence that go beyond historical webmeetings and traditional video-conferencing.
In their summary the Wainhouse Research Group conclude:
"Clearly, telepresence systems are delivering the remote meeting experience, including audio-video quality, ease-of-use, and realistic face-to-face environment that executives, product planners, and business managers want. Whether used in business negotiations, candidate job interviews, sales calls, or plain team meetings, telepresence systems are providing business professionals the ability to reduce travel while attending more meetings at the same time. The proof lies in the fact that companies who have deployed telepresence solutions find their systems are used more heavily than is the case for typical videoconferencing room systems. Although costly at first, telepresence systems have successfully addressed the limitations of typical videoconferencing designs. "
You can find a copy of their January 28, 2008 paper entitled "Telepresence vs. Videoconferencing Resolving the Cost/Benefit Conundrum"