When It’s Time To Return to the Office, Choose Crestron Automation
Crestron Mercury Can Take Your Meeting Space From Old to State-of-the-Art
This blog was originally drafted in 2019, a time that, given our current situation, now feels like a lifetime ago for many of us. Not that long ago, we were all going to and from our offices without a single worry. Fast-forward to now, and we’re working remotely, often while managing home and children responsibilities.
Once the brunt of this pandemic passes, many of us will go back to our office. However, we expect that now that companies have adapted to a work-from-home structure, some team members, especially those who have higher risk factors, will ask to continue working remotely for a while. Stay connected in this new reality with more robust video conferencing features from our partner, Crestron. We’ll give you a brief history of videoconferencing and some of our favorite Crestron capabilities.
Read our original post here!
You may recall the early days of video conferencing. It wasn’t that long ago. Video conferencing has been around in some form since the 1980s, but it was an expensive, slow, and often tedious experience. The equipment was bulky and complicated to operate, the video was grainy, and your meeting could include video or audio, just not both at the same time. It was often easier to default to a phone call.
Fast forward to modern times, where almost every smartphone has the camera and audio capability to make an excellent videoconference device. Today it's easy and often free-to-use collaboration solutions from laptops and mobile devices, with excellent video resolution and audio capabilities thanks to today’s powerful and sophisticated hardware and software. A host of collaboration applications like Zoom, Slack, Microsoft’s Skype, Google’s Hangouts, GoToMeeting, and many others offer the ability to see and hear the other party, as well as share just about any digital information from a computer and collaborate on it in real-time.
That’s great for the individual in an office – or on a beach – but what about getting a group together in the conference room? The dynamic is different, as your group may be collaborating with another group in another part of your company, or it can be a client or partner on the other side of the world. We want the same ease of use from our laptops and mobile devices when we are meeting and collaborating in a group setting.
If you’ve heard of the term BYOD (bring your own device), it means that workers want to use the tools they use every day – laptops, tablets, and smartphones – for business collaboration, without having to learn complicated new software or processes. If you’re stuck with yesterday’s technology in your conference rooms, you’re not set up for today’s fast-paced collaboration. If all you have in your conference room is a speakerphone, then you have an excellent opportunity to upgrade.
Crestron, a long-time leader in both home and commercial automation, has the solution to modernize your Alpharetta or Midtown meeting spaces instantly. Crestron Mercury is an integrated hardware and software solution that can bring your conference room into the 21st century.
Ready to see how Crestron automation can elevate your conference room right now? Just keep reading.
Bring Your Own Device
Nothing pleases information workers more than being able to use the devices they feel make them the most productive. Sometimes a smartphone works best on the go, a very portable tablet works better for some times, and of course, the workhorse laptop can mostly do it all. Employees also like to use the collaboration tools they like best, or the ones they might need to use with clients. Crestron Mercury provides the right options for device connectivity and applications, welcoming BYOD. Here are some examples:
- Bluetooth – You can start a call from a smartphone, either via cellular or any VOIP application, and the sound can be routed through Mercury's 360-degree microphone array or speaker. You can effectively ditch the old speakerphone in the conference room.
- For sharing screens or slides, you can connect an HDMI source like a laptop or other device to Mercury and project it onto a conference room flat panel monitor or projector. For wireless devices like smartphones and tablets, the Crestron Airmedia gateway allows for simple connections that can include full-motion video. No more fumbling for the right cable to connect to a device to share information.
- Crestron Mercury has USB inputs for external cameras, so you can choose the one that best fits your room and gets everyone in on the meeting.
- Using a laptop with a collaboration application like Zoom or Skype, you can now use all the facilities of those platforms with Mercury’s audio, video, and connectivity capabilities.
Crestron Mercury has a flexible design that makes it easy to integrate into conference rooms large and small. One example is that it can be powered by just one CAT6 cable with Power over Ethernet (PoE), like many security cameras. This connectivity and power in one cable makes for clean and neat installations.
We mentioned before that Mercury is made for enterprise-level collaboration. You can use just one Mercury or use them across all your conference and boardrooms. Crestron’s Fusion application manages room scheduling and tracks usage, perfect for figuring your ROI from your modern collaboration rooms. Fusion integrates with popular business calendaring software like Microsoft Office 365 and Google Calendar, making reserving a Mercury room as easy as scheduling the meeting. The usage data includes how often the equipment is used, what features are used, and alerts IT staff if there are technical issues so they can be quickly addressed. The Crestron Pinpoint app offers mobile access to schedule meetings with Mercury equipment. If someone walks by a room with a Mercury setup that suits their meeting, it can be reserved with a few taps. Once in a meeting, the app helps connect a smartphone to the system to share content wirelessly.
When it’s time to return to work, bring the power of Crestron automation to your conference and meeting rooms in Alpharetta and Midtown Atlanta with the Mercury system.
Want to learn more? Give us a call at (770) 955-8909, chat live with us below or reach out to us here to get in touch with our team today.