Why update your video conferencing technology?
Duncan Conway is buk Solution’s AV Project Manager with 10 years’ experience in the field. Here he sets out how the new audio-visual conferencing technology can transform an international organisation’s operations.
It’s no secret that technology moves at a pace – just think, the iPhone is now 12 and there were many who didn’t know they had to have one until they tried it.
Video conferencing and remote interpreting is in a similar category – the new technology we are installing for clients today is smart, efficient and makes sense in a day and age of international trade. That includes a focus on reducing the carbon footprint businesses leaves behind. Advanced AV technology brings colleagues together from across the world and all of this is all achievable with a modern internet connection.
As we have experienced, some international businesses in the UK don’t have an English-speaking figurehead, yet remote interpreting cuts through the language barriers enabling a foreign CEO to communicate with their workforce seamlessly. Using buk’s latest remote interpreting packages, we can make this a reality, massively reducing the amount of hardware required on-site. The interpreters are in our studio in Cambridge and the users listen in via a smartphone app to the language of their choice.
Higher definition video conferencing
Video conferencing can now be conducted with much higher quality than say ten years ago. Increased bandwidth has allowed video quality to increase from standard definition to 720p and 1080p High definition. Today, users are able to video conference at 4K, four times as many pixels as a 1080p system. Specialist equipment gives you a much more professional and flexible solution than the traditional method of using a laptop with webcam.
Why does it matter?
Imagine watching a rerun of your favourite sitcom from twenty years ago. On a modern HD TV you can really see the difference in quality of those reruns compared to what we watch now. Is that what your organisation is coping with now? HD Video conferencing gives us fantastic detail.
Modern video conferencing packages also include document sharing and collaboration tools, which have come on leaps and bounds to what was available 10 years ago. They allow you to upload documents before or during the meeting, effectively ‘pushing’ them across a desk thousands of miles away.
So what is the benefit over Skype or Zoom, for example?
You can still use Skype, Zoom or any of the other video conferencing service providers. What buk Solutions provides is the professional equipment to feed those systems, including dedicated microphone systems that offer more convenience and vastly improved sound quality. This is vital if you are in a meeting room with 12 people. Can you seriously imagine them all crowding around a laptop and using its built-in microphone and webcam?
With a high-quality image from a professional-grade camera and high-quality audio from a designated microphone system, an international organisation could have four or five locations around the world, each with a room containing 10 people and you’d hardly be able to tell who was in the room and who was half way round the world.
Advanced camera technology
Speaking of cameras, if you want to make your video conference system more effective, then microphone activated Pan, Tilt and Zoom (PTZ) cameras will enable you to get a closer look at delegates so you feel you are in the room with them.
They are triggered by a push-to-talk microphone synced with the camera. As someone in the room presses the button on their microphone, the camera automatically moves to a pre-set position, giving the best head and shoulders shot of that delegate. You get a much better shot with PTZ than a fixed shot from a wide lens, which is trying to pick up everyone at once.
With the increase in international trade, there will be more need for cross-border communication via video conferencing. It will become bigger and bigger: less air miles; less travel; people being able to connect from where they are at home/the office/or their headquarters.
This brings organisations together from different parts of the globe and can only mean better efficiency and employees feeling better informed. Please get in touch if you would like to discuss AV upgrades in your organisation. Call buk Solutions on 01223 411601 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
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Expert camera units, seamlessly linked to your AV system
In any environment, whether it be at a conference, board room or court room, it is essential that those in the space can see the person who is speaking. In these scenarios, the most practical method of tracking the speaker is to direct the camera to the microphone location using camera control software.