Plantronics Polycom Has Joined the (Small) Meeting
Plantronics and Polycom team up to upgrade the huddle room experience
It seems an age since Plantronics acquired Polycom for just shy of $2bn, back in July 2018. In an eagerly awaited announcement, Plantronics announced their first collaboration with Polycom is that Plantronics has now officially entered the huddle room video market with its new plug-and-play video bar, Polycom Studio. Recognising the continuous trend of open office spaces, despite their infamy for lack of productivity, Plantronics aims to enhance the experience when smaller team require access to video conferencing.
According to Research and Market, there are 32 million huddle rooms globally. However, only 2% of these spaces include equipment for video conferencing, let alone a high standard of video conferencing. On the launch of Polycom Studio, Joe Burton, President and Chief Executive Officer of Plantronics, said:
“Polycom Studio lets everyone get in the game of quality video conferencing. Polycom Studio is an important first step for newly combined Plantronics and Polycom to address the huddle room needs of the modern office.”
Plantronics’ decision to join the huddle room market was bolstered by Ira M. Weinstein, Managing Partner at Recon Research:
“Enterprises around the world have come to understand the strategic importance of their smaller meeting spaces. In fact, we expect the number of AV-enabled huddle rooms to increase by 15 percent in the next 12-24 months”.
Simple, plug and play
The video conferencing has long been crying out for simplicity. I and many others have written about the traumatic experience that is video conferencing in the enterprise. Smaller rooms typically get ignored or bits and pieces are borrowed and never seen again. A video conference without a camera or mic is not a productive one.
Polycom Studio allows a user or team to be armed with their own USB device so any PC or Mac user can utilise Polycom Studio to enhance audio and video meeting experiences. Crowding around a smartphone is – thankfully – no longer the go-to option for huddle rooms and small teams. Users of Polycom Studio will benefit from patented NoiseBlock and Acoustic Fence technology. This actively reduces or eliminates distracting noise from the rest of the office and overall sounds like a proper video conference. There is no longer a reduction in quality because there is a reduction in room size.
Automatic speaker tracking uses an ultra-wide 120-degree field camera of view to pick up who is speaking. How many times have you been on a video conference and the camera has stayed on somebody that hasn’t said a word. Or even better, circled around the whole room looking for the relevant speaker, only to arrive at the end of their conversation. Plantronics suggest that, thanks to 4K resolution and 5x electronic zoom, Polycom Studio provides TV studio-like quality and experiences in a meeting.
Sonal Bisht, Head of EMEA Corporate Communications, Plantronics and Polycom commented on the launch:
“Plantronics and Polycom have an unparalleled portfolio of integrated, intelligent solutions that spans headsets, software, desk phones, video conferencing and cloud services in the industry. The combined offering will empower our customers with the tools and flexibility they need to have for the best possible communications experience. We continue to develop rich, natural, people-first audio and collaboration experiences that unlock productivity and efficiency.”
Users of the video conferencing applications like Zoom, Microsoft Teams, Microsoft Skype for Business, Google Meet, Cisco Webex, and Amazon Chime will be able to experience HD audio and video quality via this simple portable USB device.
For IT admins currently using Polycom Device Management Service for Enterprise or Polycom RealPresence Resource Manager, the new Polycom Studio be available natively via both applications.