The New Jabra Speak 810 for larger group conferencing and collaborating

By Danny Hayasaka

October 28, 2015

Jabra recently introduced a new member to their Speak Series of USB speaker phones: Jabra Speak 810. It comes in two flavors:

These are in addition to the popular Speak 410 and 510 variants for smaller groups of 1-4 people:

First off I want to clarify that the Speak 810 is CORDED. Some of the marketing images are a little misleading (see below). The Speak 810 requires AC Power adapter (included) connected to power outlet in order to work. If connected to a PC/Laptop, you need a USB cable (included) in addition to AC power.

What’s in the box: Speak 810, AC Power Supply (various connection types), hardwired USB cable, hardwired 3.5mm jack cable

The Speak 810 has microphone range pick up of up to 15ft and supports up to 15 people in the room. We’ve been testing here in our conference room and usually have 18-20 people. The feedback I have received is positive. We can be heard clearly and we can hear the caller clearly. The Speak 810 uses DSP (Digital Signal Processing) technology and has Zoom Talk microphones which are intelligent directional microphones that focus on human voice and not noise. There are also answer/hang up buttons, volume up/down buttons as well as a mute button.

The Speak 810 supports Bluetooth (Class 1 – up to 328ft range for Class 1 supported devices) and NFC (Near Field Communication). Additionally it includes a 3.5mm jack cable to connect your smartphone or tablet directly for immediate conference calling. It’s firmware upgradeable via free Jabra Direct software.

It also has a nice cord management system on the underside.

A cool feature is the USB charge out port that allows you to recharge your smartphone or tablet. Plus it includes a Kensington lock. Jabra and Kensington have the Jabra Lock It Up Promotion through November 30, 2015 where you can get a FREE Kensington Microsaver® Micro DS Lock when you purchase a Jabra SPEAK 810 UC or MS (A $54.99 Value)!!!

As more and more organizations utilize UC, VoIP softphones and web-based conferencing solutions, the need for larger USB speakerphones are needed. All companies have multiple conference rooms of varying sizes. While the Speak 410 and 510 are great for small huddle rooms, they aren’t sufficient for larger meetings. This is where the Jabra Speak 810 comes into play or as we have come to call it, “the hoverboard”.

 

Lack of employee training reduces UC adoption. I would like to add that not having the right device also hinders UC adoption/success…

By Danny Hayasaka

October 16, 2015

Yes, it’s true that UC adoption suffers due to lack of employee training. I remember in our company when we first deployed Microsoft Lync (now Skype for Business), the individuals more involved understood and were aware of all the great features that were available to them. However, not everyone did and there was a lot of pushback, complaints, etc. Being device specialists, we had our pick of devices. Initially, everyone had desk phones optimized for Lync. After about three months, the majority of employees had removed their desk phones and opted for wireless headsets (single and multi-connectivity) and/or USB speakerphones. And of course they have a USB webcam for video calls and we have conference cam in a conference room for voice/video calls.

As a communications and collaboration specialist, I encounter several scenarios daily where customers are simply unaware of all the feature/functionality their UC platform offers.

We often get calls from customers who have had a UC platform for months or longer and have just now discovered they can “click to call”. They thought all they had was Presence and IM capabilities. Of course, now they want a “USB Headset”. As we probe a little more to understand their daily routine, we come to find in many situations, customers need more than just a USB corded headset.

I say this because often times when organizations are budgeting for a UC platform, they tend to budget $30 for a USB corded headset. Unfortunately, in most cases, that isn’t the solution. Organizations need to take time to consult with a communications and collaboration devices specialist who can walk them through the various options.

Every organization has various use cases, employee types, environments, and applications. It’s important to develop employee profiles and understand how they work on a daily basis. Are they desk-centric meaning they spend 90% or more of their day at their desks. Are they office-mobile? Meaning they spend part of their day at their desks and the other part moving about the office. Are they mobile? These are your “road warriors” who spend their time in cars, lobbies, planes, trains, hotel rooms, etc. Additionally, there are different environments. You can’t use a $30 USB corded headset in a conference room. You need different devices. What about in a lobby or other common areas?

Then, of course, we need to understand if they have multiple devices i.e. Laptop/PC, Desk Phone and/or Mobile device. Would it be beneficial to connect to all three or any combination of the three or two? Device manufacturers today offer solutions that allow multi-connectivity.

Wait there’s more, which UC platform? There are multiple headsets, phone, audio conferencing, and video conferencing device manufacturers however only a select few offers Optimized, Certified, Interoperable, Compatible with the various UC platforms. A communications and collaboration device specialist can help customers navigate through the overwhelming options and narrow down the choices to the appropriate devices so their employees utilize the UC platform more effectively. Of course, it is important for the organization to do its best to provide training. Our organization has provided this type service in the past and is strongly considering making it a regular line item as we know from our own experience how challenging it can to get employees to utilize the new UC platform.