Desktop Computing

By May 27, 2016 Read More →

The more the merrier: simplified multitasking with your monitor

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Multitasking is the magic word in today’s offices. In the times of digital transformation we have to be fast, forward-looking, need to fulfil several tasks at the same time and have to have data, texts, photos and videos constantly present. This is where modern monitors come into play. They offer ideal solutions for all of those demands. In short: a modern monitor should simplify multitasking and increase productivity. Most suitable for advanced users: a widescreen and high-resolution display with a broad range of connections. But there are more ways to optimise monitor usage.

1. More space: increased productivity with UltraWide monitors
For project work and flexibility, users have to be aware of many developments at the same time. The solution: displaying several applications simultaneously. Thereby an UltraWide monitor is the first choice. With a 21:9 widescreen, the days of endless scrolling or switching between windows are gone. Several new models also come with a curved display for a more complete viewing experience. UltraWide screens – like the curved AOC C3583FQ or the AOC U3477PQU – enable the user to place almost four A4 pages alongside one another, or to get a quick overview over 16 video streams, e.g. from surveillance cameras, displayed side-by-side without distortion. Users can also use an e-mail client or messenger on one half of the desktop and their office or editing software on the other half. With sharp QHD or Full HD resolutions, they are still able to see the smallest details – even with more than one or two open windows on the same screen. Thus, integrated Multiview options like picture in picture or picture by picture are the perfect choice to save space and time. 

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2. More connectivity: the monitor as a multitasking “hub”
In addition, hardware multitasking can help the user to fulfil high productivity demands, too. Connecting several peripheral devices directly with the monitor saves time and space – and users do not have to crawl underneath the table or deal with a tangle of cables. Monitors like the AOC U3277PQU and Q3277PQU offer a breadth of options including DisplayPort, HDMI (MHL supported for mirroring and charging mobile phones or tablets), DVI, VGA and a USB 3.0 hub for data transfer or charging of USB devices. The U3277PQU even boasts an advanced HDMI 2.0 connector for smooth UHD video playback with up to 60 frames per second. The benefits are clear: Users only need one monitor for all kinds of connections. They can connect the display with a camera or TV receiver, upload data from a tablet to the PC and at the same time recharge a smartphone via MHL. 

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3. More of both: multi-monitor set-ups
Users who would like to bring multitasking to the next level can also combine both: e.g. a widescreen monitor with several peripheral devices or even one, two or more additional monitors. There are no limits to today’s multitasking set-ups. As a result, especially hard-core gamers can experience the ultimate gaming experience that surrounds the whole field of vision. And users who work on extremely complex tasks can build their individual set-up to have all crucial aspects of their work at a glance. On this occasion, even ergonomic options like the pivot mode can come into action to optimise the individual construction.

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But multitasking is not just for the ambitious: Even casual users can reduce the effort of the easiest all-day work tasks by using simple multitasking options of their monitor. And they will never go back once they have tried it. Because when it comes to multitasking and increased productivity, the saying “less is sometimes more” is not necessarily true.

By May 16, 2016 Read More →

Two-way SLI support for the GTX 1080 and more?

15124035975lSince the news of the unparalleled performance of the GTX 1080 broke last week, there has been little concrete information regarding the SLI support of Nvidia’s GTX 1080, leading many to assume that Nvidia is not talking about it therefore nothing to report. Two-way SLI with Nvidia’s new GPU would simply be impossible. 

We have now confirmed with several sources that this is not the case, with one source stating that the GTX 1080 will not only work with Nvidia’s new HB (High Bandwidth) SLI bridges but also with existing SLI bridges. This means that traditional 3-way or 4-way SLI bridges can be fitted and work with this new GPU.

At this time, Nvidia has not released any information regarding any 3-way or 4-way versions of their HB SLI bridge, which leaves many to speculate that only traditional 3-way or 4-way SLI bridges can be used for higher end SLI configurations. Right now Nvidia claims that their new HB SLI bridge will offer better SLI performance and scaling than traditional SLI bridges as the new HB bridge will offer double the bandwidth. Meaing older Nvidia SLI bridges will limit Nvidia’s SLI performance, however we are not sure as to how much.

By May 13, 2016 Read More →

Synology DS916+ is the successor of DS415+

f-DS916+_right-45Synology® Inc. today launched DS916+, a 4-bay scalable NAS designed for professionals and growing businesses. Powered by a quad-core CPU, DS916+ performs high-speed computing and data encryption tasks. With flexible scalability up to 9 drives, DS916+ is able to handle rapidly growing storage capacity needs. Equipped with DiskStation Manager (DSM) 6.0 and versatile add-on packages, users are able to perform seamless file syncing and sharing, productive collaboration, and smooth disaster recovery on DS916+.

DS916+ delivers outstanding performance exceeding 225 MB/s reading and 221 MB/s writing. When transferring encrypted data, DS916+ also achieves 225 MB/s reading and 209 MB/s writing and can handle a wide range of computing tasks in a secured and robust working environment. DS916+ comes with two memory options, 2GB and 8GB for more flexibility in concurrent connections and virtualisation.

“Designed to meet fast growing businesses’ increasing storage capacity demands, DS916+ bridges the gap between costly enterprise level capacity and personal storage that are insufficient for expanding businesses,” said Michael Wang, Product Manager at Synology Inc. “With DS916+ and an expansion unit, DX513, businesses can now enjoy flexible scalability and all the powerful features DSM 6.0 delivers.”

DS916+ runs DSM 6.0, the most advanced and intuitive operating system for NAS devices. Featuring a wide range of applications from backup to network management, DS916+ provides all essential business services and increased productivity at work. Synology has received numerous media accolades, such as topping the midrange NAS category in TechTarget’s storage solution survey.

For more information, please visit click here.

By May 13, 2016 Read More →

Synology DS116 is the successor of DS115

002Synology  Inc. has launched the new DiskStation DS116. The 1-bay NAS server, powered by a dual-core processor with impressive encrypted data transmission capabilities, is one of the top picks for home users and small workgroups seeking a budget friendly storage solution that comes with comprehensive add-on features such as file sharing, collaboration software, and much more.

“DS116 is an excellent choice for home users and workgroup environments,” said Jason Fan, product manager at Synology Inc. “Its handy software packages include everything you need to boost work productivity and improve day-to-day workflow. Synology NAS comes with a set of robust file management tools allowing users to share, access, and sync files across desktops, laptops and mobile devices, integrate multiple public cloud storage services in one single interface, and improve team dynamics with modern collaboration packages.”

Powered by a 1.8 GHz dual-core processor, DS116 delivers high speed performance exceeding 112 MB/s writing and 111 MB/s reading. Equipped with dedicated hardware encryption engine, DS116 ensures significantly improved performance when transferring encrypted data, with 112 MB/s encrypted reading and 93 MB/s encrypted writing — an increase exceeding 241% and 364% respectively compared with its predecessor.

In addition, the dual USB 3.0 ports provides fast data transmission to a wide range of external devices. DS116 energy efficient design consumes only 10.68 watts while accessing data and 6.28 watts during disk hibernation. DS116 runs on DiskStation Manager (DSM), the most advanced and intuitive operating system for network-attached storage devices that offers a wide range of applications from backup to multimedia for home and personal uses. Synology was voted by PC Pro readers as “The Best NAS Device of 2015″.

According to their survey, more than a quarter of all NAS drives bought by PC Pro readers are made by Synology and 97% of them would buy Synology again.

For more information, please click here.  

Posted in: Desktop Computing, News
By May 11, 2016 Read More →

How to bring the European football championship to life in the living room

276E7QDSW_ftl bk_LRWith just one month to go until the European football championship kicks off in Stade de France in Paris, football fans throughout Europe are making plans for a month-long football fest. A lucky few have tickets for the stadiums. The majority will be watching at home – and pre-tournament prep for most people is all about studying match schedules and planning their own fixtures in the form of get-togethers with friends and family. To maximise viewing pleasure, it is also worth making a technology upgrade part of the game plan. MMD, a leading technology company and brand license partner for Philips Monitors, highlights some display choices to enjoy an even more brilliant viewing experience in the many hours of football over the coming weeks.

For fans on a budget
A new display does not have to be a big-budget decision. Price-aware fans who are also short of space still want their football viewing to be a sociable experience, with plenty of people around to share the highs and lows. The 27-inch 276E7QDSW display from MMD fits the bill. The format is 16:9, with enhanced Full HD 1920 x 1080 resolution, which creates a widescreen picture with detailed imaging that works perfectly for fast-moving matches. Despite its modest dimensions, the display is clear and vivid – and thanks to the wide-angle panel technology (PLS), an entire group of people can gather round and still see the picture even when looking from virtually side-on. With Flicker-Free technology, the display eliminates flicker effects, keeping eyes fresh for hours of football. Viewers can expect crisp detail paired with brightness, incredible contrast and realistic colours for a true-to-life match experience.

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For technology fans with more cash to spend
It is not like having tickets to the real-life match. But even without passing through the stadium turnstiles, football fans can get closer to the action with an UltraWide screen, Quad HD resolution and one-billion-colour support. What makes the BDM3490UC special is its curvature: it wraps around the viewer’s line of vision to create a truly immersive, focused experience. The flicker-free, high resolution visuals (3440 x 1440 pixels) and smooth colour gradations are complemented by the 34-inch display’s integrated audio technology, the DTS™ sound enrichment suite that brings the unique stadium sound alive through integrated speakers. It all makes for totally captivating football!

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For non-fans (rumoured to exist)
Of course (dare we say it), not everyone relishes the prospect of a month-long football-only viewing diet. People who are not fans themselves but have one (or several) in the family should take a look at the 27-inch 275C5QHGSW display with Ambiglow Plus Base. Its special lighting effects are guaranteed to restore a good mood. Even when the display is off, the Ambiglow Plus technology shines a halo of light on and around the base that can be adjusted to create a unique room ambience. When the display is on, it can be programmed to synchronize colour and brightness with the display image (inevitably football) to create a more intense viewing experience that moves colour and vibrancy beyond the screen itself. The picture is also superb: AH-IPS widescreen visuals, vivid colours and contrast will keep the football fans happy too.

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In the new extended format, the championship is a 51-match tournament: more than ever before. All the more reason to get the right display for these extra viewing hours in time for the opening match on 10 June – and make the experience simply unforgettable.

By April 29, 2016 Read More →

An AOC AGON Series Premium Gaming Monitor

2016-04-29 (2)AOC, one of the top global brands in the display market, recently presented their premium line of gaming monitors – the AGON series. Its first model is the 27″ (68.6 cm) AG271QX powered by a high-speed TN panel at a native resolution of 2560 x 1440 pixels. It delivers ultra-smooth images with a 144 Hz refresh rate and a response time of 1 ms, supported by Adaptive-Sync Technology (FreeSync™ compatible, at a 30-144 Hz range) that reduces stuttering and tearing – focusing on the best gaming performance.

Gamers that play competitively not only rely on fast and smooth images, but also on instantaneously-executed commands and perfect vision in every situation. The AOC Low Input Lag mode disables picture post-processing on the monitor’s electronics and, therefore, accelerates the command pass-through from mouse, keyboard and gamepad to result in immediate actions while the AOC Shadow Control enables gamers to quickly adjust contrast in overly dark or bright areas without sacrificing the quality of well-balanced areas across the rest of the screen.

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Gamers that never run out of steam would also want perfect ergonomics and to be able to rely on convenient features to adjust their monitor. The AOC AGON ergonomic base provides plenty of comfort when enabling adjustments of height, tilt and swivel, and is accurately marked by a scale, so gamers can always jump back to their preferred settings. What is more, the stand is equipped with a carry-handle for easy transportation of the monitor for example to and from eSports events. When not using the headset, there is a practical holder at the side of the display to hook it over. Even more comfort is delivered by the eye-protecting AOC Flicker-Free Technology and the AOC Low Blue Light mode, both reducing eye strain, discomfort and fatigue during long gaming sessions. Monitor settings are key features when it comes to individuality, and they need to be easily accessible. Adjustable gaming presets will grant gamers exactly that. AOC has not just implemented changeable Game Mode Presets, but also added the AOC QuickSwitch Controller, enabling the user to switch effortlessly between modes and adjust brightness, contrast and other gaming features.

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The AOC AGON AG271QX premium gaming monitor, clearly addressing competitive gamers, will be available in June 2016 for an MSRP of £479. 

 

By April 28, 2016 Read More →

Gigabyte announces 4 New BRIX Systems

gigGigabyte has announced the launch of four new models joining the company’s extensive list of Intel® Thunderbolt™ 3 certified devices: the BRIX GB-BSi5T-6200, GB-BSi5HT-6200, GB-BSi7T-6500 and GB-BSi7HT-6500Featuring the latest Intel® 6th generation Core™ processors, and now official support for the world’s fastest transfer protocol with Thunderbolt 3 over USB Type-C™ port, these new BRIX enter a new category of their own as a powerfully compact high-end PC.

Redefining the Desktop PC

Challenging the essence of how we define a desktop PC, GIGABYTE engineers have developed an ultra-compact PC with a brushed aluminum surface chassis design. Ideal for a broad range of computing applications at home or in the office, the BRIX expounds sheer simplicity and convenience. With a comprehensive choice of processors covering the entire performance spectrum, the BRIX sets a new standard for desktop miniaturization that makes it perfect as a discreet HTPC/multimedia hub, an ultra-low power PC for the family, an office PC or as a digital signage unit.

Intel® Thunderbolt™ 3 Controller, Opening a World of New Possibilities

The new Thunderbolt™ 3 protocol, which is available over a USB Type-C™ connector on the back panel of the GIGABYTE BRIX T models, brings an unprecedented single-wire bandwidth of up to 40 Gb/s — twice more than the previous generation of Thunderbolt! This incredible increase in bandwidth is also accompanied with support for different protocols such as DisplayPort 1.2, which is able to drive a 4K resolution display at 60 FPS, and USB 3.1, also backwards compatible with USB 3.0 and USB 2.0, opening up a world of new possibilities. Additionally, Thunderbolt 3 over USB Type-C has the ability to daisy-chain up to 6 devices, helping you to declutter your desktop and have a true one-cable solution.

Reversible USB Type-C™ with USB 3.1

GIGABYTE introduces the ultra-fast 10Gb/s USB3.1 Gen. 2 protocol to its BRIX units over the new reversible USB Type-C™ port. Powered by the Intel® USB3.1 controller which utilizes 4 PCIe Gen. 3 lanes, the GIGABYTE BRIX Type-C port is presented with a wide and uncompromised bandwidth to reach the limits of the USB 3.1 protocol and make back-ups or file transfers as quick as possible. 

Multiple Display Support

Without the need for an additional graphics card, the BRIX offers support for multiple displays via the Mini-DP and HDMI 2.0 ports. Thanks to Thunderbolt 3, you can alternatively configure your multi-display setup from the Mini-DP to the Type-C port. The BRIX offers a variety of configurations which makes it the perfect choice as a high productivity PC in a professional and a home environment. Other use case scenarios may include industrial and commercial multi-display applications.

 

Connectivity Worthy of a Desktop Tower

The BRIX is truly a one of a kind, versatile and flexible PC. Despite its compact footprint and slim profile, the BRIX offers plenty of connectivity with four USB 3.0 ports, one USB Type-C port (USB3.1 and Thunderbolt 3), one SD card slot, an HDMI 2.0, a Mini-DP (DisplayPort 1.2), gigabit LAN as well as headset and microphone jacks. Additionally with its bundled VESA bracket, it offers a simple and elegant way to turn any VESA compliant display or TV into a full-featured PC or digital signage unit.

 

 

By April 27, 2016 Read More →

Prepare for a massive 43-inch 4K IPS PC monitor from Philips

BDM4350UC_00-RTP-global-001While most of us are used to monitors ranging in 24-inches to 30 or even 32-inches in size, once you step up to Ultra-HD, there is more benefit to having an even larger display hooked up to your PC. This is where Philips comes in, with its new 43-inch PC monitor, offering 4K Ultra-HD resolution and promising excellent colour accuracy.

The new BDM4350UC Philips display uses high performance panels to deliver UltraClear 4K UHD images: at 3840 x 2160 pixels. With 43 inches of 4K UHD screen space available, there is plenty of room to work on multiple windows and applications side-by-side. Philips also has a feature known as MultiView, which allows you to display four separate 1080p video sources on the screen at once.

This is an IPS screen, which ensures colour accuracy and wider viewing angles compared to TN. It also offers a 60Hz refresh rate and multiple connections including HDMI 2.0, DisplayPort and MHL for streaming from a mobile device. Unfortunately the monitor lacks Freesync.

Philips’ new 43-inch Ultra-HD IPS monitor will be available from May onwards at around £1169.99. You can find the full specifications below:

  • IPS LCD panel.
  • Panel size 42.51 inches / 108 cm.
  • 3840 x 2160 @ 60 Hz.
  • Viewing angle: 178º (H) / 178° (V), @ C/R > 20.
  • Brightness: 300 cd/m².
  • Brightness uniformity: 96% ~ 105%.
  • 1.07 billion colours (10 bit)
  • MultiView
  • PiP (two devices), PBP (four devices)
  • USB: USB 3.0 x 4 (1 w/ fast charging)
  • Signal Input: VGA (Analog), DisplayPort x 2, HDMI (2.0), MHL x 2
  • Sync Input: Separate Sync, Sync on Green
  • Audio (In/Out): PC audio-in, Headphone out

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Press Release follows:

MMD, the leading technology company and brand license partner for Philips Monitors, announces a new addition to the line-up of Philips 4K Ultra HD displays. At 43 inches, the latest display is the largest in the range to date, and delivers the same brilliant 4K UHD viewing experience, detail and precision as its siblings. This extra-large desktop provides professionals with more space than ever to work. With MultiView 4K support, it is also possible to stream input from four different sources simultaneously without compromising on the sense of space that a display of this size creates on the desktop.

Quadruple clarity and extra productivity

The new BDM4350UC Philips display uses high performance panels to deliver UltraClear 4K UHD images: at 3840 x 2160 pixels, this is four times the resolution of Full HD, and four times the clarity. The display makes images and graphics come alive, whatever the application. CAD engineers can zoom in on the fine detail of intricate designs. In geo-exploration, the scientific images are presented with more clarity than ever. Financial experts pulling together data into vast, complex spreadsheets can keep everything in view without having to decipher miniature cells. And creative professionals will also appreciate the ultrafine detail and generous screen space provided by this superb display.

 

Space to spread out: 43-inch desktop

“The latest addition to the 4K line-up testifies to the ongoing commitment of Philips and MMD to making the viewing experience more productive and brilliant than ever. With this 43-inch display on their desk, users have more space to enjoy the clarity and brilliance of the 4K UHD viewing experience,” comments Albert Ulfman, Product Manager Philips monitors Europe at MMD.

No matter whether people are working alone or wish to get half a dozen colleagues round the table to collaborate on a task, everyone has a great view of the screen. The advanced panel technology ensures details and colours stay true from any viewing angle, even almost side-on. For an even wider perspective, the ultra-narrow bezel design makes it possible to line up two 43-inch displays side-by-side, creating a huge wide panorama without the distraction of physical bezels.

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MultiView technology for 4K
With 43 inches of 4K UHD screen space available, there is plenty of room to work on multiple windows and applications side-by-side. Ideal for situations when information has to be viewed and processed simultaneously from multiple sources, the MultiView feature enables users to stream input from up to four systems, and show four Full HD windows on the screen at one time. The Picture-by-Picture (PbP) feature provides a vital overview of data in control centres – traffic and weather monitoring, for instance, air traffic control and facility security. Four camera streams from different sources can be monitored on one and the same screen. In the office, team members can view content from four notebooks, delivering greater ease and productivity for team meetings with input from multiple sources under discussion. Others might prefer to combine work with pleasure – with Picture-in-Picture mode (PiP), which supports two devices, users can keep tabs e.g. on a live football feed from a set-top box, while working on the PC.

 

Supersized connectivity

With a range of connectivity options including HDMI, DisplayPort and MHL for streaming from mobile devices (while charging the device at the same time), the new 43-inch 4K Ultra HD display is engineered to offer freedom of choice for both work and leisure use. Super-speed USB 3.0 (at 5.0 Gbit/s, the transfer rate is around 10 times faster than USB 2.0) enables users to experience their content in 4K Ultra HD brilliance at 60Hz on the 43-inch screen.

The new Philips 43-inch BDM4350UC display will be available in the beginning of May at a recommended retail price of £1169,99.

More information on Philips monitors: www.philips.com/monitors

Posted in: Desktop Computing, News
By April 21, 2016 Read More →

Three Easy Ways to Stay Healthy at the Desk

275P4VYKEB_f imageWith World Day for Safety and Health at Work coming up on 28 April 2016, MMD, a leading technology company and brand license partner for Philips Monitors, highlights some easy tactics that desk-based workers can employ to keep their working space as healthy as possible.

The theme of this year’s World Day for Safety and Health at Work is workplace stress. The increased pace and pressure in working lives is a major contributor. Over a lifetime, people can spend upwards of a third of their waking hours at work, so reducing stress levels is key. Awareness has grown in recent years that smart choices of workplace equipment can make all the difference to health and well-being at work. MMD has a commitment to designing and producing displays that help users to make these smart choices. And by following a few simple rules, people can stay productive and healthy even with hours of screen time every day.

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• Go easy on the eyes. To prevent eye fatigue and stay concentrated, it is vital to have a display that minimises strain. Screen flicker will impair concentration; and over the long term, continuous exposure to the blue light of display devices is shown to increase the risk of vision impairment. Many displays from MMD feature a new health-and-wellbeing technology called SoftBlue, which mitigates the potential long-term impacts on eyesight from blue light exposure. Displays using this special LED technology reduce light at harmful wavelengths by over 90% – and still maintain full color fidelity and brightness. Screen resolution is also a key factor to consider to keep eyes fresh, so 5K monitors like the 275P4VYKEB are also an option to minimise eye strain.

• Sit up straight. The right posture is essential to eliminate backache. All over the world, innumerable workdays are missed for this very reason – and back pain is the most common cause of job-related disability. With an adjustable monitor stand such as the Philips SmartErgoBase, users can tilt, swivel and height-adjust their display, ensuring their line of vision remains at a natural and healthy angle to the screen. The outcome is better posture overall and less chance of a painful back at the end of the day. As a welcome side effect, the base reduces cable clutter for a neater, tidier workspace with more focus and less distraction.

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• Stay focused – to have time for breaks. Having a clean desk is key to staying more relaxed, productive and ultimately healthier. It all comes down to a sense of space – and a larger display helps to create a more spacious working environment. With more room to keep multiple windows open simultaneously, there is no need for the distraction of continually opening and closing task windows, and far less scrolling. Here too, screen resolution is also key. If the office is short on desktop real estate, users can obtain a greater sense of space by working with a higher-resolution display. The extra vertical and horizontal pixels (as on the Philips Monitors 27-inch UltraClear 5K) have the effect of creating additional space on screen. By being more productive, people gain time for regular breaks which are so important, for taking time out to chat to colleagues or get out for a walk in the fresh air. This helps people to stay relaxed, productive, and ready for the next challenge.

More information on Philips monitors: www.philips.com/monitors

Posted in: Desktop Computing
By April 19, 2016 Read More →

Acer Launches New “Chromebase for Meetings”

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The Acer Chromebase for Meetings is an all-in-one video conferencing solution for business. The highlights of this new machine are a large 24-inch adjustable touchscreen display, integrated, adjustable HD camera, 4 microphones and 2 stereo speakers.Inside is an Intel Celeron dual-core with Google video acceleration along with 4GB of RAM. Ports include an HDMI, Headphone jack, 3x USB 3.0, 1x USB 2.0, and SD card reader. The Chromebase for meetings is available at $799 from our partners in the US, Canada, UK, Ireland and Australia. The cost includes the first year’s management and support fees.

Chromebase for Meetings is hardly anything new when it comes to hardware, however there is a management console that lets administrators easily deploy and manage a fleet of such devices across meeting rooms around the globe.

We’re also happy to announce new features to our remote fleet management tools. Administrators can receive alert notifications and track health of their fleet of Chrome devices for meetings. They can remotely diagnose and troubleshoot audio, video quality and bandwidth problems. Administrators can also customize the interface using their own background images.

 

Posted in: Desktop Computing, News