HP Poly Rolls Out a Bevy of Products Aimed at Improving Hybrid Work

IT departments and enterprises require special apps to support today’s hybrid workforce. At next week’s InfoComm 2024 conference HP will showcase solutions and technologies that can help.

HP tools and innovations to support hybrid work
(Credit: designer491 / Alamy Stock Photo)

Will people return to the office or not? That has been the big question since the pandemic-induced work-from-home period ended several years ago. Since then, many companies have mandated employees return to work only to have workers push back. Some companies have made seeing employees’ desire to spend time in the office optional. After swinging the pendulum back and forth, most companies have settled into a hybrid work plan.

This emphasizes meeting room technology, as almost all meetings will have remote participants, and creating meeting equality for all participants is now a must. There are many challenges when it comes to collaborating in large meeting rooms. Video issues frequently arise, with participants being blocked from the camera. Audio problems, such as poor acoustics and insufficient microphone coverage, make it difficult for participants to hear. Moreover, the large room setup and integration process is complex, time-consuming, and requires various components.

To address these challenges, HP subsidiary Poly is bringing new video conferencing solutions to the market that provide smarter, more adaptable, and immersive meeting experiences. Let’s take a closer look at the latest offerings, all of which are being released in June.

Poly Studio G62 and G9 Plus

First on the list is the Poly Studio Base Kit G9 Plus. It is tailored specifically for Microsoft Teams Rooms and comprises the HP Mini IP PC G9 and the Poly TC10 controller. The kit retails for $2,699 and supports multiple controllers in larger spaces. Additionally, the Poly Studio V52 Video Bar, which attaches to the HP Mini IP PC, comes with artificial intelligence (AI) audio and video features that minimize distractions and improve visibility for participants.

HP is also rolling out a modular video conferencing system for large spaces. The Poly Studio G62 was developed to address challenges in boardrooms and training rooms, where engagement among numerous participants can be challenging, according to Brian Phillips, HP’s director of NPI and solutions messaging, video, and software. Priced at around $2,000, Studio G62 is certified for Microsoft Teams and integrates with different peripherals.

Studio G62 leverages Poly’s DirectorAI for multi-camera setups, providing full room coverage. By processing multiple camera inputs, the system can intelligently display participants based on their location and actions. The G62 supports several cameras, such as the Studio E70, Studio E60, and the upcoming Studio E360. The G62, Studio E70, and Studio E360 connect via Ethernet, while the Studio E60 has a USB connection, with Ethernet coming later this year. This modular approach differs from traditional USB setups, enabling flexible deployment in large spaces.

“The idea is that it’s super simple and easy to scale the experiences through simple Ethernet connections as you add more cameras and microphones, making these divisible spaces. We’re looking at some future peripherals and other solutions that are going to connect this way,” said Phillips during a product briefing.

Furthermore, Studio G62 has innovative audio features like AI-powered noise cancellation and sound reflection reduction, improving clarity in acoustically challenging rooms. Initially, Studio G62 is supporting up to three microphones. However, HP plans to expand that to more microphones later this year, eliminating the need for extra digital signal processors (DSPs).

Advanced Software and Management Tools

On the software side, the newly released VideoOS 4.3 allows users to manage video calls and room settings using Poly controllers. When paired with Studio X Series video bars, Studio G62, or the G7500 video conferencing system, users can control video calls and room lighting/displays from a single device via this web-based software.

At the same time, HP’s cloud-based management software Poly Lens is getting a major upgrade. Poly Lens remotely manages Poly devices from a single dashboard, including Studio G62 and Studio Base Kit G9 Plus. As part of the upgrade, Poly Lens has been integrated with Zoom device management (ZDM) to show detailed information about the condition of meeting rooms. This makes it easier to fix problems and manage Zoom Rooms. For example, Poly Lens can pull data specific to a Zoom Room. If an issue is detected, users can link to the ZDM interface from Poly Lens to resolve the problem without navigating multiple platforms. All the features are accessible via the Poly Lens portal.

“Now you will get a single pane of glass to see what’s happening not only on the colleague device side of the room but with the Lens apps or other Lens features. We’re doing this with Zoom initially and also working closely with other partners to be able to do that on their platforms,” said Phillips.

Sustainability and Future Developments

Sustainability is a core focus for HP. The Poly Studio G62, for instance, incorporates post-consumer recycled plastics and metals, aligning with increasing customer demand for environmentally friendly products. According to Phillips, HP’s sustainable approach is part of the company’s ongoing commitment to reducing its environmental impact.

On the innovation front, HP is working with Google to bring Project Starline to market. The videoconferencing technology will provide lifelike meeting experiences—such as natural conversation, gestures, and eye contact—by using AI and 3D imaging. Project Starline will make remote participants feel as though they are in the same room together. HP is leveraging its computing expertise, global reach, and extensive salesforce to provide hardware for the project, which is planned for release in 2025.

HP will showcase these and other innovations at the InfoComm 2024 conference, which will take place June 8-14 in Las Vegas. Among them are audiovisual (AV) enhancements and software integrations, particularly between Poly Lens and Zoom, for improved device management. Additional launches are expected in the fall, centered on the technologies that connect Poly video devices.

Zeus Kerravala is the founder and principal analyst with ZK Research.

Read his other Network Computing articles here.

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About the Author(s)

Zeus Kerravala, Founder and Principal Analyst with ZK Research

Zeus Kerravala is the founder and principal analyst with ZK Research. He spent 10 years at Yankee Group and prior to that held a number of corporate IT positions. Kerravala is considered one of the top 10 IT analysts in the world by Apollo Research, which evaluated 3,960 technology analysts and their individual press coverage metrics.

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