Are you a quickly growing business with employees all over the nation or even the world? Do you have a hard time setting up meetings between these employees separated by land and sea? If so, Google's new hardware might just be what they need.
Google announced this afternoon that it's working with Asus to create what it calls the Chromebox for meetings. The Chromebox itself is just a tiny desktop PC that runs Google's proprietary Chrome OS. The "for meetings" part means that it comes equipped with all you need to host video conference calls between your office and another halfway around the world.
Here's what Google says you'll get with the Chromebox for meetings:
Instant meeting room. Chromebox for meetings comes with a blazing-fast Intel Core i7-based Chromebox, a high-definition camera, a combined microphone and speaker unit and a remote control. Set up your entire room in minutes and easily manage all meeting rooms from a web-based management console. All you need is the display in your room, and you’re good to go.
Simpler and faster meetings. Walk into the room, click the remote once and you’re instantly in the meeting. No more complex dial-in codes, passcodes or leader PINs. Share your laptop screen wirelessly, no need for any cords and adaptors. Integration with Google Apps makes it easy to invite others and add rooms to video meetings, directly from Google Calendar.
Meetings with anyone, anywhere. Up to 15 participants can join the video meeting from other conference rooms, their laptops, tablets or smartphones. Need to meet with a customer who doesn’t use Chromebox for meetings? That’s easy too—all they need is a Gmail account. You can also connect to rooms that have traditional video conferencing systems using a new tool from Vidyo, and participants who prefer phones can join your meeting with a conference call number from UberConference.
Google says the Asus Chromebox for meetings is available today in the U.S. for $999. For that price, you'll get the Chromebox, all the accessories and the first year's management and support. After that, management and support will cost $250 a year.
If Asus isn't your thing, Google says Chromeboxes from HP and Dell will be available in the coming months. The Chromebox for meetings will launch in more countries later this year, including Australia, Canada, France, Japan, New Zealand, Spain and the U.K.
Image via Google