Conference Room Evolution & Solutions & Equipment

7 minutes

The majority of meetings were held in one location towards the end of the 20th century. Information was exchanged, and ideas were presented around a table. A business meeting is typically held in an executive's office or a conference room. The conference room is the most important, core or most important part of the enterprise. To enable the internal staff of the enterprise to work efficiently, the enterprise has extremely strict requirements for the conference room. Historically, managers would meet separately, but nowadays, businesses are moving towards more inclusive, collaborative teams that engage all employees and align them with the organization's goals.

The Evolution of Meeting Rooms

For a long time, whiteboards, mobile whiteboard stands, and long conference tables were the staple of corporate meetings. The meeting format is straightforward, documents will be copied and distributed, and people will take turns posting their thoughts. As going into the 21st century, with the mature development of conference technology, companies are starting to add conference equipment, namely conference speaking units, conference recording unit, conference voting unit, etc. The addition of such equipment products has dramatically improved the conference system.

Then in the last 10 years, with the further advancement of conferencing technology, the conference room has depended on the Internet. The development of the Internet has effectively shortened the distance between people. The R&D of video conferencing products make people feel close to each other.

Conference Room Technology Trends

Technology trends in conference rooms have been changing in recent years. From scalability, security, video content quality, and more, people strive to make their meeting experience more comfortable and secure. Many companies are leveraging AI to enhance the video conferencing experience, while some continue improving office automation through intelligent assistants. Meeting rooms are becoming increasingly intelligent, and people's growing demand for meetings is inseparable.

1. Video

Video conferencing is a significant technology trend, especially in the coming years. While video conferencing accounts for the largest share of hybrid meetings, most video conferencing is based on camera solutions. Many different video solutions can help enhance the video conferencing experience.

2. Camera

Cameras can make your meetings clearer and your work easier with voice and image capabilities. In addition to using audio technology, you can also use other features to improve video quality, such as virtual cameras and meeting recordings. People will be interested in artificial intelligence and AI capabilities in the next few years. When it comes to the use of cameras, companies need to consider whether they will use AI in meetings. It's a quick turnaround; AI and cameras let you use everything from simple data extraction to complex AI algorithms.

3. Cloud technology

In the use of conferences, cloud technology and AI have been widely used. While it's unclear what applications the technology will find in conference rooms until 2020, many companies are already using the cloud as an infrastructure to build their conference rooms. Some enterprises have begun to use cloud conferencing to provide organizations with greater flexibility and access to more functions according to actual needs. Businesses can use cloud video conferencing services and AI to enhance and improve the enterprise video conferencing experience.

Different-Sized Conference Rooms for Various Needs

Technology changes are impacting how companies design their workspaces, and the meeting room is evolving. In most corporations, the 3-6 person Huddle Room has replaced the traditional 8-15 person conference room. We can see that each has different functions and roles in large, medium, and small conference rooms. Delegates usually present their best and most important work through slides. However, the small representatives mainly communicate and demonstrate through video conferences. Therefore, the small/medium conference room can meet various industries' needs and office requirements in a more flexible and easy-to-use way.

1. Small Conference Room

A small conference room, also known as a huddle room, can hold meetings with 3-5 participants. It is mainly used for small group meetings, such as:

  • Team discussions
  • Private 1-to-1 video conference meetings
  • Applicant interviews

The small conference room is not like the traditional conference rooms; it is a less formal environment and lets the user be more relaxed and free. Usually, the small-sized conference room does not require a lot of conferencing equipment. A portable webcam or a Bluetooth speakerphone will meet the users' needs.

2. Medium Conference Room

The medium-sized conference room allows 8-15 participants to join the meeting at once, and it is mainly used for:

  • Department meetings
  • Business meetings

The medium-sized meeting room is the most popular conference room of all businesses. As it is a traditional meeting room, it provides enough space for everyone to move freely but is not so big that some people can not hear other people's voices.

3. Large Conference Room

The large conference room can hold a meeting with more than 20 people and is mainly used for board meetings or other company events. The large conference room is not commonly used in many businesses. The board meetings or other company events probably happen once a year, and it is a waste to have a large conference room when not using it. Therefore, many businesses would rather have a few small & medium-sized conference rooms.

How to Choose the Right Professional Conference Camera?

In order to select the correct professional conference camera, you would need to consider the size of your conference room since using the same video conference camera for different-sized conference rooms will have different effects. Based on the three sizes of conference rooms mentioned above, we have recommended the following solutions.

Video Conference Cameras for Small Conference Room

A small meeting room can usually occupy up to 3-5 people, and the meeting room size is about 10sqm. In general, personal video conferencing equipment can select the EMEET SmartCam C980 Pro. It is a piece of 3-in-1 conference equipment that combines a 1080p camera, two professional 81dB speakerphones and 4 Omni-directional microphones.

The C980 Pro can be plugged in and played with a USB-A wire connected to your computer and external power supply is not required. Chip-level low-power tech ensures you use it easily while effectively protecting your computers. Also, the 90° FOV accommodates more participants and needs no longer to adjust. The attached privacy cover allows you to protect your privacy. Consequently, the quality and the price of EMEET SmartCam C980 Pro would be highly appropriate to use in small conference rooms.

Video Conference Cameras for Medium Conference Room

A medium conference room can occupy up to 8-15 people; the meeting room size is about 25-40sqm. In general, the video conferencing equipment can select the EMEET Meeting Capsule. This is a 360° panoramic 1080p video conferencing camera with 8-microphone arrays and a 10W/90dB speakerphone.

The Meeting Capsule can be plugged in and played, launching meetings instantly without the need for setup or a WiFi connection. It has 5 different video modes for selection and can meet various scenarios.

Video modes include:

  • Collaboration mode - a panoramic view of the entire conference room and shown at the bottom of the screen. Up to 3 active speakers can be zoomed in and appear on the screen simultaneously.
  • Speech mode - a panoramic view of the entire conference room shown at the bottom of the screen. Only 1 active speaker will be zoomed in and appear on the screen.
  • Classic mode - it provides a 180°, 120° & 90° angle view, places the Meeting Capsule at the end of the table, and the camera captures all participants in a wide field of view.
  • Spotlight mode - suitable for single-person use, with the field of view reduced to 65°.
  • InPrivate mode - it will turn off the camera and the microphone array to protect your privacy.

Consequently, the EMEET Meeting Capsule is highly suitable for medium-sized conference rooms, as you can select different modes for different scenarios. It has a pickup radius of 13ft (4m), allowing every participant to hear clearly and be involved in an immersive collaborative experience.

Video Conference Cameras for Large Conference Room

A large conference room can occupy more than 20 people at a time, and with many participants, the conference room requires high-quality conference equipment. The EMEET Meeting Capsule cannot provide a high-quality audio pickup and output due to the size of the conference room. However, the Meeting Capsule can extend the coverage from 18ft to 36ft when daisy chained with the EMEET OfficeCore M3 Speakerphone. This allows all the participants in the meeting room to elaborate on their thoughts without any limitations on the conference equipment. The OfficeCore M3 is a conference speaker that can easily be setup and connected to the Meeting Capsule by just using a single daisy chain cable. Please click here to see setup for Meeting Capsule + M3 conference speaker.

Video Conferencing Platforms

There are various video conferencing platforms available to download from the internet. Each software has its pros & cons. We have selected the two most popular video conferencing software and show you how to set up your conference room camera using the software.

Conference Room Camera for Teams

  • Connect the conference room camera to your computer: Using a USB cable or BlueTooth.
  • In the Microsoft Team app, go to Teams > Calendar.
  • Select your meeting to join.
  • Adjust your camera and microphone.
  • When you're ready to start class, select Join now.
  • If your computer does not automatically change cameras, please pay attention to the following steps below:
    • Select the setting icon in the top right corner, Click the camera dropdown and select EMEET Meeting Capsule; the same for the speakerphone and microphone.

Conference Room Camera for Zoom

  • Connect the conference room camera to your computer: Using a USB cable or BlueTooth.
  • Click "join meeting" in your meeting invite.
  • Enter the meeting ID and your name, and click join or sign in to your Zoom meeting account.
  • If your computer does not automatically change cameras, please pay attention to the following steps below:
    • Select the setting icon in the top right corner, Click the camera dropdown and select EMEET Meeting Capsule; the same for the speakerphone and microphone.

Conclusion

As a tool-type product, the conference room has gone through many generations of evolution from scratch to good. Simultaneously, it is also the result of continuous change due to its special meeting requirements and usage scene characteristics. This is because, with the progress of the scientific and technological revolution, the constant development and improvement of new technologies, such as information technology and the Internet of Things, have effectively solved various problems encountered in life and work. We also feel that the conference room brings more and more convenience. In today's increasingly rich meeting scenarios and functions, we still have higher standards for meeting rooms. We need a more comfortable, safe, efficient and convenient experience to replace traditional fixed meeting places.

WRITTEN BY EMEET

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