Arraya Insights | April 3, 2020
Early last year, Cisco released the Webex Room Kit Mini, a solution custom-built for increasingly fragmented, condensed conferencing spaces. That solution catered to those looking to orchestrate meetings in one of two ways: via Cisco’s Webex platform or by simply connecting through a USB port. This dual approach meant organizations had options, but what if organizations weren’t quite sure of one of those options yet? Cisco heard these rumblings and is back with an answer.
Cisco’s Webex Room USB is an even more cost effective version of 2019’s Webex Room Kit Mini. It retains that solution’s USB connectivity (as the name implies) while turning off access to its ability to connect to the Webex codec. Outside of this key point of differentiation, the two solutions are identical.
So, with an assist from our collaboration team, we dug in to where the Webex Room USB fits into Cisco’s portfolio and what some of its ideal use cases might look like. Here’s what we discovered:
- Smaller, budget conscious organizations. The Webex Room USB enables BYOD meetings that run off the laptop or device of one of the attendees as opposed to a dedicated Webex codec. Attendees simply connect and get going. This streamlined functionality allows for a lower sticker price, opening the Webex Room USB market up to smaller organizations that may have otherwise been priced out of enhancing their huddle space experience.
- Organizations in search of a Webex Room gateway. The Webex Room USB doesn’t have to be the end of the line for huddle space evolution. It certainly can be that, but it can also be the first step in a much longer journey. The Webex Room USB was built to support the Webex Room Kit Mini codec and Touch 10 Room Controller, making it easily ungradable to a more substantial, capable solution should the need or interest arise later on.
- Performance-focused organizations. The knock against some huddle space solutions is they leverage so-called “fisheye” lens cameras to capture the full landscape of a meeting in a tight space. The Webex Room USB’s camera forgoes this distorted look, replacing it with a clear, 120-degree field of vision. This can make it a perfect option for organizations in need of a meeting solution with crisp and clear views. The Webex Room USB also includes automatic participant detection to keep meetings in frame and noise reduction to remove common audio irritants.
- Organizations seeking freedom from dongles. It’s a nightmare scenario for anyone who hosts meetings on the regular. Everything is all set, everyone is either in the huddle space or logged in remotely. The only thing missing? The dongle needed to connect their device and share content. Did it get moved to the huddle space next door? Did the room’s previous occupants accidentally walk off with it? The Webex Room USB solves this by allowing wireless sharing. Hosts can connect and share content via a browser, making dongle hunts history.
- Organizations that want more from huddle spaces. The Webex Room USB provides value beyond displaying meeting content. It can integrate with Webex Control Hub to enable digital signage. When a screen in a huddle space isn’t in use, the Webex Room USB can use it to display an organization’s logo or branding, key organizational updates, or even just an engaging background image.
- Organizations looking to streamline management while expanding insights. Besides giving employees more places to meet, huddle spaces have also given IT more to worry about. As these types of environments spread, it could only continue to stretch IT teams thin. The Webex Room USB can help curb IT responsibility creep by way of integration with Cisco’s Control Hub. This provides IT with a single pane of glass portal from which they can provision devices and manage existing deployments. This integration can expand IT’s access to analytics, giving teams insights into room usage, productivity stats, and more.
Next Steps: Right-size your organization’s meeting spaces
The Webex Room USB is a powerful solution in its own right, but it also makes for an easy entry into Cisco’s Webex Room portfolio for organizations’ with long-term expansion goals. Want to learn more about the Webex Room USB, the Webex Room Kit Mini and more solutions that can help you modernize and right-size your organization’s meeting spaces? Arraya’s collaboration team can help you sift through the crowded marketplace to find the right solution for you. You can start a conversation with our team today by visiting: https://www.arrayasolutions.com/contact-us/.
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