If you’ve been involved in many video calls, you’ve likely experienced it – seeing the entire board room on the far end, with a mahogany table the size of a small country, and two people sitting at the very end whose heads look as tiny as raisins. Then someone else joins the call and it’s lunchtime in their time zone.  Everyone else on the call is well aware of this, as the crunching of sandwich wrappers and the clinking of soda cans overwhelms the voice of the person speaking.


These are all things that can be overcome during video calls.  Most systems have cameras with zoom, especially in those large board rooms.  Every system has a mute button.  But isn’t the promise of video collaboration that it will be “just like we are in the same room”?  When we’re all actually in the same room, I don’t need to use a touch panel or remote control to adjust the view in order to recognize everyone.  And, I don’t need my finger hovering over a mute button to keep out distracting sounds.


Often times it’s not that users don’t want to make adjustments, it’s just that they're scared to try or don’t know how.  Have you ever walked into a meeting, only to find every seat taken except the one in front of the remote control?  No one wants to be responsible for messing up the call. So instead, you dial in at the start, and then don’t touch that remote again for the rest of the meeting, no matter what.


Encouraging users to manage their own video experience isn’t the answer.  It’s not a question of training or getting users accustomed to changing camera views and managing their audio.  They shouldn’t need to.  These aren’t things that come naturally to us during in-person meetings, and expecting users to do something different during video calls is asking too much. 


groupseriespicture.jpgToday Polycom is launching some new technology breakthroughs for Polycom RealPresence Group Series that ensure users get a great, high-quality, productive experience automatically.  Finally! A video collaboration solution that adjusts to the users, not the other way around.


One great example is EagleEye Producer, which always makes sure everyone in the room is seen, but without all the empty space around them – just the participants.  You can learn more about it from my colleague Marty Sexton, who wrote about Polycom EagleEye Producer in the blog: “Improving the Customer Experience: Can highly ‘produced’ video collaboration be more productive?


For an even more up-close experience, EagleEye Director will zoom in specifically on the person talking.  We were the first in the industry to introduce this innovative automatic speaker tracking, and the impact is incredible – you can stand up, present from a white board or touch display, and never again worry about whether you’re being seen or waste time trying to manually adjust the camera.


On the audio side, our new Polycom NoiseBlock technology automatically keeps out keyboard typing, paper shuffling, bag crunching, and other distracting sounds. As more collaboration happens outside of traditional conference rooms and instead from open office environments, manufacturing floors, or anywhere conversations need to happen, this technology is crucial to keeping those conversations productive and free from distraction.


We just released a new software update for RealPresence Group Series with a host of other collaboration enhancements, so be sure to check out our info page and our new overview video of Polycom RealPresence Group Series to learn more.




Additional resources:

The on-demand webcast about Polycom's new breakthrough solutions is available for replay. Watch it now.

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