Your car is a perfect example of how to design your video conferencing room.
The automotive engineering process designs a car that is a balance between the hardware needed to power the vehicle and the design elements required to make the physical act of driving manageable and comfortable. There is a common purpose about the way the steering wheel, for instance, interacts with both the wheels beneath the car and the driver seated within. The design is both practical and functional, because each of these sides is crucial to a safe and successful journey.
The same philosophy should apply to the design of your video conferencing room. The video conference itself may be virtual, but the people attending are very real, as are the chairs that support their bodies, the table they work from, and the microphones, cables, and video call controls that all need a place within the physical space around them.
For designers of collaboration spaces like Ashton Bentley, video conferencing hardware informs video conferencing room design. The idea is to create a virtual journey that is as smooth as a drive through the countryside.
Ashton Bentley Video Conferencing Integration
Ashton Bentley doesn’t make webcams or video calling platforms. The AV integration specialists contribute to video conferencing in a much subtler way. It could be said that their goal is, in fact, to not be noticed at all. The British company does make wow-factor items such as 4K and touchscreen displays, but their real gift to video conference callers is the way they hide away the video conferencing tech.
Once you start trying to piece together a new video conferencing system within a finite space you can see how form and function fit together for better virtual meetings.
Ashton Bentley video conferencing integration is about merging the hardware and furniture elements of your video space in the most elegant possible way. They produce packaged room solutions that cater for groups of four to more than 12 people and include cable-ready chairs and tables, adjustable screen mounts and displays, and discreet housing for all the cables and microphones and control devices that come with a video connection.
You can get a sense of how it looks in the showroom in the video below:
It may not sound overly impressive, but once you start trying to piece together a new video conferencing system within a finite space you can see how form and function fit together for better virtual meetings.
Housing the Logitech Rally
In the middle of 2018, Logitech released its most ambitious video conferencing system to date. You can read our article on the Rally group video conferencing system to find out more about this 4K in-room solution, but right now we’re more interested in how to accommodate all its features.
Ideally, as much Rally infrastructure as possible gets hidden away from view.
Rally ships with mountable speakers, up to seven beamforming mic pods, a table hub, and a display hub. That’s a lot of hardware to pack into a single room. Even allowing for the fact that Rally is intended primarily for groups of eight or more people in the room and so warrants a medium or large-sized conference room, you still need to make it function without creating a tangle of cables and hardware.
So, you find an integrated AV furniture supplier and you weave Rally’s gadgets into your tables and chairs. Cables get tucked into dedicated moldings so that the mic pods and controls can sit within the frame of a table. Power sockets are incorporated into chairs to minimize cord clutter and length. The height of both displays and furniture is personalized to complement the PTZ camera with optical lens that is Rally’s centerpiece.
Ideally, as much Rally infrastructure as possible gets hidden away from view, leaving you with the illusion that there’s nothing between you and your remote colleagues but the 4K clarity of a digital screen.
Video Conferencing Without the Clutter
The practical result of this integration is the illusion of a wireless space that still packs the power of a wired one (wireless is still best left to personal devices such as headphones and doesn’t yet have the capacity to match wired performance over a high-end video setup).
The marriage of form and function in an Ashton Bentley video conferencing room solution aims to make video calls as comfortable and natural as they are technically effective.
Removing cables from around chairs and embedding hardware into table tops declutters the whole video conferencing room. Those making the call can move around freely, use the clear space in front of them as a desk instead of a microphone stand, and make design tweaks to accommodate their personal preferences.
The marriage of form and function in an Ashton Bentley video conferencing room solution aims to make video calls as comfortable and natural as they are technically effective. We can certainly imagine a day when video conferencing will literally inhabit cars, but until then, we can make things easier by simply adopting an automotive engineering mindset.