Solutions built in conjunction with Lenovo come as demand for cloud-based collaboration soars
Communications technology vendor Poly is rolling out new videoconferencing equipment designed for Microsoft Teams at a time when such cloud-based collaboration solutions are in high demand due to the global coronavirus outbreak.
The Lowdown: The new Poly Room Solutions for Microsoft Teams Rooms, announced this week, complement the vendor’s Studio X family of video collaboration offerings, which were released in November 2019 and will offer native Teams capabilities.
The Details: The new offerings – the Poly G10-T, G40-T, and G80-T – are designed to deliver high-quality video collaboration experiences on Microsoft Teams while enabling IT managers to scale as needed for meeting rooms of all sizes, an important capability given the large number of businesses that have suddenly found the bulk of their employees working from home. Businesses now have to be able to accommodate differing demands for room setups and numbers of users.
Among the capabilities the solutions offer are automatic group framing and technologies that track speakers.
The new Teams appliances from Poly – the result of the merger of Plantronics and Polycom two years ago – were developed in conjunction with Lenovo and its ThinkSmart team and are powered by Intel’s vPro technology for greater security and reliability. The G10-T is essentially a starter kit that includes a controller, wall mount kit, and USB cable. The G40-T for small and midsize rooms comes with all that plus Poly Studio PSB, and the G80-T, for large rooms, includes Poly’s EagleEye Director II (for tracking and zooming in on speakers) and Trio C60 conference phone.
All are based on Lenovo’s ThinkSmart Edition Tiny appliance design. Lenovo in January rolled out a portable collaboration device for Teams.
The Impact: At a time when the pandemic has slammed most sectors of the tech industry, the videoconferencing space has seen demand skyrocket. Microsoft Teams is seeing as many as 75 million active users a day, and Zoom has said its daily participant numbers have been as high as 300 million. The new Poly tools give partners more options for customers looking to expand their videoconferencing capabilities.
The Buzz: “As more and more users recognize the value of video-based collaboration while working from anywhere, they will need to stay connected and productive with tools that integrate easily with cloud collaboration platforms like Teams,” said Tim Root, vice president and general manager of room collaboration for Poly. “Poly Room Solutions for Microsoft Teams Rooms are designed to make meetings feel natural and effortless with the highest quality in audio and video, so all participants feel like a true part of the conversation.”
“Lenovo is excited to join forces with Poly to deliver Poly Room Solution for Microsoft Teams, featuring ThinkSmart Edition Tiny,” said Joseph Mingori, general manager of Lenovo Smart Office Business. “This offering allows us to deliver a joint solution designed to meet our shared customers’ collaboration space needs.”
“Customers look to Poly and Microsoft to deliver a seamless collaboration experience across collaboration, calling and meetings,” said Ilya Bukshteyn, partner director for Microsoft Teams devices. “Poly brings our joint customers a broad portfolio of devices, all delivering a consistent Microsoft Teams user experience, and enabling those users to collaborate and communicate easily, quickly, and seamlessly wherever they are working.”