Story image

Group conferencing with Microsoft Lync room systems

19 Mar 14

Deane Jessep, UCFX director of business development outlines the options for group conferencing when using Microsoft Lync.

While purchasing Microsoft Lync the question of what to do in your customer's meeting rooms will need to be addressed.

If they use or need video conferencing, it may not be obvious that a PC with a webcam, speakers and microphone are not going to be suitable for their needs.

The user interface is too fiddly, one touch conferencing is impossible, and the microphone and camera will not be adequate for anything bigger than a two to four person huddle room.

There is now a complete ecosystem of options for group conferencing on Microsoft Lync, from enhanced camera solutions to complete units that come resplendent with large touch-sensitive interactive white boards and simple to drive interfaces.

Lync Room Systems (LRS) are the most integrated of the options available and they are manufactured by three different vendors, each with their own rich product history and experience: Crestron, Polycom and Smart Technologies.

Crestron is one of the leaders in room automation and their unique point of difference is that it comes with the ability to deeply integrate the rest of meeting room’s functions; from blinds, to lights, and the turning on and automatic channel setting of the rest of the AV solutions that your customers' have in their boardroom.

Polycom is already the global leader in Microsoft group conferencing and they bring expertise in high end cameras; their solution is available with a special ‘round table’ camera that takes a seamless video of the entire room from a centre point in the table. Using voice activated switching it is then capable of framing the active speaker in a single large pane above the surround view.

Smart Technologies leads the world’s interactive whiteboard market, and their effort in LRS shows it; a smart touch screen experience and enhancements to the software make for a white-boarding experience that will allow customers to drive the content in conferences in new and interesting ways.

The key points of the LRS experience common to all is that the software is a customised version of Microsoft Lync that is designed for operation by big fingers and comes on a tablet-style touch controller.

Customers will be able to book their meeting rooms from in-room or through Microsoft Outlook and Exchange using the Lync Online Meeting button, and when users walk into the room they will be able to join the meeting with a touch of a button.

Video layouts are easily changed and content sharing is done through Lync, just like your customers are used to with their desktops. All of these features lead to LRS being an intuitive and quickly adoptable technology for all sizes of modern meeting room.

This article was originally published in March 2014 issue of The Channel magazine

Kiwis make waves in IoT World Cup
A New Zealand company, KotahiNet, has been named as a finalist in the IoT World Cup for its River Pollution Monitoring solution.
Can it be trusted? Huawei’s founder speaks out
Ren Zhengfei spoke candidly in a recent media roundtable about security, 5G, his daughter’s detainment, the USA, and the West’s perception of Huawei.
Oracle Java Card update boosts security for IoT devices
"Java Card 3.1 is very significant to the Internet of Things, bringing interoperability, security and flexibility to a fast-growing market currently lacking high-security and flexible edge security solutions."
How SMBs can use data to drive business outcomes
With the right technology, companies can capture consumer, sales, and expense data, and use it to evaluate and construct future plans.
Survey shows that IoT is RoI across Asia Pacific
A recent Frost & Sullivan survey across Australia, Hong Kong and Singapore shows that IoT deployment improves business metrics by around 12%.
Sophos hires ex-McAfee SVP Gavin Struther
After 16 years as the APAC senior vice president and president for McAfee, Struthers is now heading the APJ arm of Sophos.
Security platform provider Deep Instinct expands local presence
The company has made two A/NZ specific leadership hires and formed several partnerships with organisations in the region.
Half of companies unable to detect IoT device breaches
A Gemalto study also shows that the of blockchain technology to help secure IoT data, services and devices has doubled in a year.