Via a blog post today, Google announced an addition to their business software platform G Suite. And ironically, it’s not software. It’s pure hardware.
This is the Jamboard, and it’s meant to compete with Microsoft’s Surface Hub. It looks like a giant tablet on wheels, which it kinda is. For businesses, the Jamboard is supposed to offer a more seemless productivity experience for use with collaborative teams. For instance, you can use its 55-inch 4K display to edit documents, doodle, create presentations, and more. There’s a web cam for video conferences, while a pen and eraser are included that don’t require batteries for (you guessed it!) drawing and erasing. And just like a whiteboard (which Google says this device is similar to), you can also erase stuff with your finger. Smart.
Companion apps on iOS and Android can allow team members to interact with the Jamboard from wherever they are, while a single cable on the back will power the entire device. So no matter where you take this thing, setting it back up will only require your knowledge about plugging in a plug.
In addition to rolling around on four wheels, you can also mount the Jamboard onto a wall for a more integrated look inside your company’s office. All in all, this thing looks pretty great for productivity. Under $6,000 is the claimed price of this giant whiteboard, while a release date isn’t currently known.
You can read the full blog post below.
Jamboard — the whiteboard, reimagined for collaboration in the cloud
PRODUCT MANAGER, G SUITE
Bringing the right team together for a meeting or brainstorm can take an idea from being good to great. When we tap into ideas from teams across the globe, our work becomes more collaborative and productive. It doesn’t feel like…well, work.
At Google, we’ve set out to redefine meetings. So today, we’re introducing Jamboard — a collaborative, digital whiteboard that makes it easy for your team to share ideas in real-time and create without boundaries. We’re moving the whiteboard to the cloud.
Your team’s collaborative, cloud-first whiteboard
Jamboard raises the bar on collaborative creativity, bringing the same real-time collaboration found in G Suite, combined with the best of the web, to your team’s brainstorms and meetings. You can work with teammates from across the world on other Jamboards or remotely use the smartphone or tablet companion app.
Jamboard makes it easy to enrich your brainstorm with the power of Google Search and your team’s work in G Suite. Grab images and content from the web and bring them straight into your “jam.” Pull in work from Docs, Sheets and Slides, or add photos stored in Drive. To capture your ideas clearly, Jamboard is packed with tools like sticky notes and stencils as well as intelligent features like handwriting and shape recognition.
It’s a hassle when you use a whiteboard, reach the end of your meeting and have to quickly scramble to snap a picture of your work. How many times have you scribbled “do not erase” above your idea? Jamboard lets you take your work with you. When you “jam” with your colleagues, it lives in the cloud in Google Drive, so you can easily share what you’ve created or come back to iterate at anytime. Your brainstorm doesn’t have to end when the meeting does.
Designed for precision and ease
Jamboard is intelligently designed to speed up collaboration among your teams with a 55-inch 4k display that features a best-in-class touch response time. Combine this with a built-in HD camera, speakers and Wi-Fi, and you’re set up to collaborate and broadcast your work globally with Hangouts.
Jamboard’s touchscreen was built for precision drawing. It automatically recognizes the difference between using the stylus to sketch or the eraser to start over, and neither require batteries or pairing. Jamboard can also sense when you’re using your finger to wipe work off of the screen, just like a classic whiteboard (except you won’t get ink on your hand). The intuitive, single-cable setup makes it easy to start creating quickly with Jamboard — just wheel it in, turn it on and start brainstorming.
Time to jam
We want to help teams get back to the heart of what they love to do: create new ideas. That’s why we’ve worked closely with G Suite customers like Instrument, Netflix, and Spotify to refine the blend of hardware and software that drives Jamboard. We’re also partnering with BenQ to tap into its network of channels and resellers to help bring Jamboard to market.
While touch displays have traditionally been expensive, at under $6,000 USD, Jamboard is a competitively-priced way to transform your team’s meetings and will be available for purchase in 2017. As we “jam” on the final product details, we’re ready to partner with a broader set of G Suite customers to perfect Jamboard through an Early Adopter Program. If you’re interested, submit the form on the Jamboard website to receive more information about eligibility