Meeting room technology in 2017

Meeting room technology is evolving. Being a systems integrator, we need to keep on top of these changes. As a trusted public sector supplier, we also have a responsibility to educate the market.

Last Wednesday, Public-i held a webcasting and AV open day. It was hosted by our clients Hambleton District Council.

We had thirteen attendees from a range of organisations. IT, Digital Engagement and Democratic Services Officers joined us from Councils, National Parks Authorities and OPCCs. We also had representatives from Modern.Gov and Shure sharing their expertise.

The idea was to discuss how these systems can be integrated effectively to give you the best – and most economical – meeting experience.

meeting room technology

Public-i’s Keith Blackwell presenting at Hambleton DC

We understand that Councils are being asked to deliver the same services with less money. This has led to many organisations selling off assets and adopting new ways of working.

If the way we work and do business is changing then meeting room technology must adapt too. Here are a few things we covered:

The rise of Multi-media microphone systems

Televic and other microphone manufacturers are now releasing systems like the uniCOS. Going further than a standard “push-to-talk” microphone, it’s purpose is collaboration. This is designed for flexible working and lets you share documents and watch live HD video. Reassuringly, this functionality is delivered via one single CAT5e cable – saving valuable space.

meeting room technology

Televic uniCOS Multimedia

Projectors vs. flat screen displays

Laser projectors are now becoming widespread so you no longer need to worry about changing bulbs. Projectors like the Epson EX7235 Pro are great if you’re meetings are never in the same space (it’s easy to carry at 5.29 pounds).

However, flat panels are becoming more affordable too. Being interactive, they’re starting to replace small format projectors in meeting rooms. Microsoft Surface Hub, Cisco Spark and Display Ten all have their advantages for flexible working arrangements. Alternatively, Lifesize video conferencing is easy to set-up and use – Even this amatuer helped demo the kit from our head office.

meeting room technology

A novice (me) participating in video conferencing

Streamlined control: AV, webcasting and committee management

Crestron, Extron and AMX are the leaders in meeting room control. However, as technology develops, some important components are missing. If you’re webcasting a Council meeting you don’t have time to upload committee papers twice. Our work with Modern.Gov makes governance easy. Officers only need to upload documents once (through Modern.Gov) and these will be generated automatically alongside your webcast.

meeting room technology

Modern.Gov were in attendance

We’ve also developed SpaceManager which allows you to control conference microphones, webcasting and voting from one simple interface.

Where do you start?

The important thing to remember when trying to pick the right technology is designno two rooms are the same.

Designing the system from an early stage will save time and money in the long run. We can offer advice on how to make your meeting space easier to manage. Consequently, bringing it up-to-date as well.

If you’re interested in attending an open day, the next one’s in September. It’s free to attend so get in touch and we’ll forward you the invite.