Our vision is to enable incredible collaboration experiences for every person, no matter where or how they work. That includes:
Aligning with that vision, we’re announcing new devices and features that support great hybrid work.
Two weeks ago, we announced a major step toward meeting inclusivity and interoperability. Cisco Devices will now support Microsoft Teams Rooms natively– with a full portfolio for remote, office, and on-the-go collaboration.
And we aren’t stopping there. Our vision is to make hybrid work equitable for every person. And we know there’s a ways to go. In our surveys, 88% of workers say they are frustrated by in-office experiences. Large conference rooms particularly remain a challenge for inclusion. Think of the last time you joined a virtual meeting where one or more people joined from a large space- think a training room or large auditorium. How well could you see or hear them? Could you differentiate who was speaking- or pick up on context clues from in-room interactions?
Today, we announced a significant step towards engaging, inclusive, and equitable meetings in large spaces. Introducing the Cisco Room Kit EQ, Cisco’s most powerful collaboration device yet. The Room Kit EQ enhances hybrid meetings in large spaces in three key capacities:
Featuring an AI-powered Nvidia processor in its core, the Room Kit EQ codec has a 20x faster AI and Machine Learning engine compared to our best-selling Room Kit Plus. And, the EQ codec contains the most complex printed circuit board ever designed by Cisco. Powered by the enhancements we’ve made in the Cisco Quad Camera, the room kit uses advanced intelligence to detect meeting participants and frame them for equitable visibility when joining from a large space.
The Room Kit EQ also offers extended connectivity. Connect up to three external displays and multiple accessories (microphones, conferencing cameras, speakers, and other room accessories) to easily customize the collaboration experience in large or uniquely shaped rooms. And, users can seamlessly switch to BYOD mode with a single USB cable.
Finally, users will have the freedom of choice; the EQ can be used as a native RoomOS or Microsoft Teams Rooms video device.
We have also continued the expansion of our wearables portfolio, giving customers more choice with the Cisco Headset 720 Series.
One of the biggest challenges in remote and hybrid work is managing noise – from busy call centers, coffee shops, and even shared office spaces. Using audio intelligence, the Headset 720 Series features AI- voice activated microphones which eliminate the user’s environmental noise while not speaking on the call, enabling everyone to stay focused on the conversation. It also features a 276° rotation boom arm with the ability to flip-to-mute. With up to 23 hours of talk-time and the all-new one button to join for Webex and Microsoft Teams, your team can stay focused and sound great on calls.
The Headset 720 Series and Headset 320 Series (which we announced earlier this year) will both be Microsoft Teams certified early next calendar year. Our first Microsoft Teams certified peripheral- the Cisco Desk Camera 4K- is available today.
When powerful hardware is married to innovative software, we can make hybrid work magical. For instance, we can enable any participant- in-office or remote- to ideate and co-create from anywhere with Webex Whiteboard, which is generally available at the end of November.
We’re also announcing three new meeting experiences on devices- a brand new meeting layout, on-screen chat messages, and join access to Webinars from devices. In our latest in-meeting layout, we’re solving a common challenge occurring across platforms in today’s hybrid meetings. In large meetings where content is shared, users are currently limited to seeing only a handful of meeting participants. Participants lose rich feedback from their peers when visibility is limited.
To solve this, we’ve increased the number of people seen while content is shared to nineteen, so users can see real-time reactions from more people:
Looking forward, we’ll also introduce rendered meeting chats to our native Room OS experience. Across layouts, in-meeting chat messages will appear on the device UI, allowing room participants to see the conversation. In addition to this, we are also announcing the ability for attendees to join Webex Webinars from devices. This allows in-office attendees to gather around a device to watch a webinar together as a team – perfect for the hybrid workplace.
At WebexOne 2022, we also announced Workspace Insights on Webex Control Hub, giving IT managers access to an inventory overview and state-of-affairs of their workspaces. In Control Hub, IT teams can get a real-time view of which spaces are busy or free, as well as how they’re being used and scheduled. With historical reporting that shows peak occupancy hours and the most utilized workspaces, IT can leverage the data necessary to make informed workspace decisions.
To see a live demonstration from our team, sign up to attend the Weekly Walk-In, where we’ll highlight our newest devices.