Google unveils the Jamboard, a 55-inch 4K digital whiteboard that's cheaper than the Surface Hub

By midian182 ยท 6 replies
Oct 26, 2016
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  1. Google is taking on Microsoft’s Surface Hub with its own 55-inch 4K wall-mounted touchscreen aimed at businesses. The Jamboard is a cloud-connected digital whiteboard that lets teams collaborate on projects even when people are in different locations.

    The display, which runs Android and a new whiteboarding app, lets users draw, type, import/edit images and Google docs, do web searches in a mini browser, add post-it notes, place stickers, and more, all while automatically saving everything to Google Drive.

    The Jamboard’s built-in HD camera, speakers, and Wi-Fi lets teams use Hangouts, allowing them to broadcast their work globally. Support for YouTube will arrive at a later date, and third-party developers will eventually be able to create apps that run on Jamboard.

    Google’s device can recognize up to 16 simultaneous touch inputs, and its passive stylus (no batteries or Bluetooth connection required) may look chunky, but it can draw a line just 1mm thick. It also comes with a round eraser, though you can also use your finger to remove stuff.

    Probably the most important element of the Jamboard is its remote collaboration features. Teams from around the world can watch and contribute to “jam” sessions using their own Jamboards, or participate using the full companion tablet app for iOS and Android. There’s also a smartphone app that lets users follow along and contribute.

    The Jamboard can be wall mounted or rolled around on a stand, and it comes with USB and HDMI ports. Google said it has already been testing and refining the device with companies such as Netflix and Spotify.

    The Jamboard will be available for G Suite customers in the first half of 2017 for less than $6000, making it cheaper than Microsoft’s $8999 55-inch Surface Hub. There’s an early adopter program for those who can’t wait until next year.

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  2. Teko03

    Teko03 TS Evangelist Posts: 415   +186

    Good to see more moving into this product space, but Jamboard? For once Microsoft actually came up with the better name in Surface Hub.
  3. Uncle Al

    Uncle Al TS Evangelist Posts: 3,362   +2,007

    Now if they just make it rotate 90 degree's you can use it for a lunch table after everyone gets bored with using it for it's original purpose, or businesses rush out to buy the "latest upgrade" in just 12-18 months!
  4. Kibaruk

    Kibaruk TechSpot Paladin Posts: 3,287   +903

    Have you worked in the "corporate" world? Do you have any idea how expensive a "normal" (Think Cisco) video conference system really is? I can tell you for sure no one rushes out to buy upgrades if they don't really need to, the systems are THAT expensive.

    Now this inexpensive device, along with the Hub, I can assure you, even if it's only used for video calls it would pay itself and more.
    Yes they did, normally google sucks in the names. Also being it Android vs a windows computer, it does sound kind of clunky, yes for sure you can run skype for business or the mobile office in it but it will not be the same as running it in a windows environment. As a side note it's more common to see the corporate users having iphones, so this means a 3rd completely different environment and you know your average user, they hate changes and adapting to something is "I don't like it".

    In the end I think that saving 3 grand versus having the users with something they are already comfortable is not a good trade off.
    Teko03 likes this.
  5. Uncle Al

    Uncle Al TS Evangelist Posts: 3,362   +2,007

  6. Kibaruk

    Kibaruk TechSpot Paladin Posts: 3,287   +903

    Long enough to know they don't just throw away money, at least in the couple corporations I've worked in.
  7. Capaill

    Capaill TS Evangelist Posts: 453   +183

    Colour me cynical but, in my experience an engineering team might get this and use it for everything they can think of, installing any apps that help them brainstorm and coordinate better. But they would have to fight tooth and nail to get approval for an upgrade. In fact, they might not want to upgrade as it would risk breaking all of the apps they already got working, especially if they wrote 3rd party apps for it. Whereas a sales team might use this only for videoconferencing but would have any upgrades approved instantly. Money flows at different speeds in different parts of a corporation. Basically I don't see this kind of product getting as far as the people who could make best use of it.

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