Boosting productivity using Microsoft Surface Hub with crowdbeamer
A real productivity winner
Microsoft Surface Hub is a powerful team collaboration display for the modern workplace, enabling professionals to work together naturally. Crowdbeamer is a clever presentation system that makes it exceptionally easy to stream any screen content to all personal devices within reach. When used together, crowdbeamer delivers the results of Surface Hub team collaboration straight to everybody on the team. That boosts a productivity rise of the entire collaboration process.
In this article, we’ll
- describe how Microsoft Surface Hub works,
- explain how crowdbeamer works,
- highlight how crowdbeamer & Microsoft Surface Hub work together,
- and summarize why this makes a real productivity winner.
How Microsoft Surface Hub works
Whether participants are spread around the world or all together in one conference room, Microsoft Surface Hub facilitates and strengthens collaboration and teamwork during meetings thanks to its many great features:
- a large multi-touch display (both 84-inch and 55-inch versions offer the same features, with the 55-inch Microsoft Surface Hub having the added advantage of mobility),
- a responsive pen and inking experience,
- built-in video conferencing,
- and a suite of onboard Office apps.
Participants can simply walk up and join a Skype for Business meeting with a single tap, or schedule a Skype for Business meeting from Outlook. Aside from scheduling, there is no difference between ad-hoc or scheduled meetings: all Microsoft Surface Hub apps and features are available in both.
Microsoft Surface Hub’s multi-touch display and built-in videoconferencing facilitate and strengthen collaboration and teamwork during meetings that involve both local and remote participants.
Image source: Microsoft Corporation
Writing on the Surface Hub almost feels like using paper
To start collaborating using the Microsoft Surface Hub Whiteboard function, all that is needed is to take a pen from its docking station or launch the Whiteboard function from the Start menu. Then meeting participants can draw and write comments on the whiteboard or can copy text and images to it. They can do that from any app on the onboard computer, or from any application on a laptop, tablet or smartphone connected to the Surface Hub.
Thanks to the display’s short reaction time, writing on the Surface Hub almost feels like using paper… be it paper on which people can write simultaneously from different locations around the world. Microsoft Surface Hub enables Whiteboard to Whiteboard collaboration, letting remote users work jointly on a single whiteboard.
Powerful built-in video conferencing capabilities
When Microsoft Surface Hub is included in a Skype for Business meeting request, the Surface Hub screen can be presented to remote participants who can view it in their own Skype for Business window. Individual participants can join a Surface Hub meeting from their laptops when there is no meeting room available equipped with a Surface Hub. And if any of the remote participants want to present, Skype for Business will make sure their presentation content appears on the Surface Hub screen.
Also, Surface Hub has two cameras along each side. During video conferences, these allow the speaker to transition from one side to the other without exiting the video screen, or even blocking it completely.
Action is required before closing the meeting
At the end of each meeting, any notes and changes to documents are deleted from the Surface Hub hard drive to make sure unauthorized users can never access any information that should remain within the team. To make that information available to everybody on the team, the Surface Hub meeting administrator should not forget to take action before closing the meeting. Notes and changes to documents should either be emailed, uploaded to OneDrive or saved to a USB key.
How crowdbeamer works
Crowdbeamer is a plug-and-present system that lets presenters reach out directly to their audience, streaming any HDMI or VGA video signal in real time to all personal devices connected to its private WiFi network.
Crowdbeamer is a 1-to-many screen sharing solution. It consists of a device for the presenter and a free app for the audience
Creating a set of personalized handouts
Anybody in the audience using the free crowdbeamer app on a laptop, tablet or smartphone, gets a clear view of what’s being presented. And a comprehensive set of app features makes it easy to create a set of personalized handouts. That is done by capturing relevant presentation content in Full HD quality and completing it with notes.
How crowdbeamer & Microsoft Surface Hub work together
All that is needed to use Microsoft Surface Hub with crowdbeamer is to connect the Surface Hub DisplayPort Video Out port to crowdbeamer.
Using Microsoft Surface Hub with crowdbeamer is straightforward. By connecting the Surface Hub DisplayPort Video Out port to crowdbeamer with Certified DisplayPort and HDMI cables, all meeting participants can view any Surface Hub screen content directly on their device of choice.
DisplayPort Video Out port on the 55 inch Microsoft Surface Hub.
Image source: Microsoft Corporation
DisplayPort Video Out port on the 84 inch Microsoft Surface Hub.
Image source: Microsoft Corporation
There is no limit to the type of content on which teams can work together
Microsoft Surface Hub comes with a full range of onboard apps. That’s why the possibilities go far beyond sharing and collaborating on a PowerPoint document or an Excel spreadsheet. Using the built-in web browser, the entire team can work together on any digital asset available in the corporate cloud. And by projecting audio and video from a computer to the Surface Hub, there is no limit to the type of content on which teams can work together with Surface Hub and crowdbeamer.
Why using Microsoft Surface Hub with crowdbeamer makes a real productivity winner
Simply put: while Surface Hub excels at team collaboration, crowdbeamer is a champion in real-time presentation sharing. That makes these highly complementary systems the perfect fit for companies that want to bring collaboration to a new level, boosting productivity of their collaboration processes.
Crowdbeamer strengthens the collaboration process
Crowdbeamer delivers any Surface Hub screen content directly and in real time to all portable devices in the conference room, bringing both the progress and the results of the meeting to every individual team member. Because all participants can use the crowdbeamer app to take screenshots of the meeting highlights
there is no need to send emails afterwards,
there isn’t any risk of losing Surface Hub screens when ending the meeting,
all participants can entirely focus on working together as a team,
and from within the crowdbeamer app, they can even share the captured information to business apps such as Microsoft OneNote or OneDrive.
Crowdbeamer strengthens the collaboration process enabled by Microsoft Surface Hub and keeps everybody focused on working together. In short, crowdbeamer delivers a top productivity experience for everybody on the team.