Cisco Unveils Touch-Based, Three-in-One Collaboration Device

Cisco has unveiled a touch-based, three-in-one collaboration device that combines wireless presentation, digital whiteboarding and videoconferencing. The smart whiteboard offers features comparable to similar products from Google and Microsoft at a fraction of the price.

The Cisco Spark Board brings together digital learning tools and devices to make conference rooms more connected than ever, according to the company. “We are creating a global, worldwide network of workspaces, which you can access from anywhere,” Cisco said in a  company statement.

Here’s how it works: Individuals can walk up to the Spark Board and it will recognize and greet them without any WiFi or network connection. It accomplishes this through the Cisco Spark platform, which offers new ultrasound wireless pairing technology that identifies nearby users by weaving connections between the Cisco Spark app and Cisco’s assortment of video and meeting hardware – replacing the need for traditional remote controls. The Spark platform also includes end-to-end encryption to keep content secure.

Other key design features include:

  • 55-inch edge LED LCD;
  • A 4K camera that captures a high-resolution, wide-angle image of the entire room;
  • 12-microphone array that automatically amplifies and modulates speaker voices;
  • Capacitive touch; and
  • Enables all content to be shared, edited and stored in the cloud.

Furthermore, the Spark platform enables post-meeting comments, follow-up action items and notes, designed to foster interaction after a meeting has ended. It automatically saves all work to a space that every collaborator can access.

The Cisco Spark app has also been redesigned to feature an activity-based workflow that looks the same across all devices (desktop, mobile phone, tablet and the Cisco Spark Board). Individuals can edit and contribute to the whiteboard remotely as well, via the app.

The Spark Board is priced at $5,000, an affordable price point compared to similar products like Google’s Jamboard (which costs about $6,000) and Microsoft’s Surface Hub (which costs $9,000 for a 55-inch model).

To learn more, watch the video below or visit the Cisco site.