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What are you doing? Hybrid Work, Work From Home, Work In Office

We recently ran a poll across Call One, Inc’s Twitter, YouTube Community, and LinkedIn. The objective was to see if there was a clear model businesses were adopting in this post-pandemic landscape: hybrid, fully remote, or return to the office. According to Best Practice Institute 2021 Return to Work Study, over 83% of CEOs wanting their employees back in the office in 2021, while only 10% of employees wishing to be back in the office full time. Some companies like Twitter and DropBox are giving employees the option to permanently work remote, according to Vox April 21, 2021 article.  So what is currently happening? We asked in our polls, “As of July 2021, what is your current work model? Work From Home, In-Office, Hybrid, Not Working. We had a total of 2,010 votes. Here are the results:  

Twitter Poll Results – 1,839 votes 

  • 31.4% Working from home 
  • 32% In the office 
  • 22.2% Hybrid  
  • 14.4% Not working 

Hybrid Work Work From Home Work In Office

YouTube Community Poll Results – 140 votes 

  • 61% Working from home 
  • 15% In the office 
  • 19% Hybrid 
  • 6% Not working 
Hybrid Work Work From Home Work In Office

LinkedIn Poll Results – 31 votes 

  • 52% Working from home 
  • 13% In the Office  
  • 32% Hybrid 
  • 3% Not working 
Hybrid Work Work From Home Work In Office

If you take the average of all three poll results: 

  • 48.1% Working from home 
  • 20% In the Office 
  • 24.4% Hybrid 
  • 7.8% Not Working 

What these results show is there is a strong need for audio and video solutions to support employees across multiple environments. Recently I posted a video sharing my home office setup and HQ office setup. My objective is to have a consistent work experience regardless of where I’m working. I’m fortunate to have a dedicated office in both locations. For those who don’t, you have the option of assigning seats or you can take a look at Office Hoteling.   

Office Hoteling 

Office hoteling is the elimination of assigned seating in a workspace. This allows members to reserve office space as needed. Effectively implement hot-desking or hoteling in your office with Embrava Desk Sign. These Desk Signs visually allow users to quickly determine which workspaces are available to be used. Green indicates the space is available. Orange shows it’s reserved. When checked in the sign glows red. Yellow is ending. Learn more in this blog, How Embrava Desk Sign helps with Office Hoteling which includes a video showing the Embrava Desk Sign in action.  

touchdown booths social distancing  Hybrid Work Work From Home Work In Office

Personal Audio and Video Devices 

Business and IT leaders need to identify what experience they want their employees to have in a hybrid or flexible work environment. Those who have been working from home since March of 2020 understand the pros and cons. Hybrid work presents its own set of challenges when it comes to technology. Besides a laptop, what additional hardware will employees be expected to transport to and from the office? I’m a fan of the Poly Voyager Focus 2 and Evolve 75 as audio solutions for hybrid work. I explain the reasons why in this ANC Headsets for Business Collaboration blog. I also like the Poly Studio P5 Kits for the simplicity it provides organizations as they make decisions on device standards. The Poly Studio P5 Kits include an audio and video device all in one SKU which makes it easy to order and manage. Learn more in this blog Poly Studio P5 Kits – Great for Hybrid Work!  

There are so many great options available for personal audio and video devices for Hybrid Work and Work From Home from leading brands that include Poly, Jabra, Cisco, Logitech, EPOS, Yealink, Konftel, JPL, Huddly, VDO360, Belkin, and more! 

Group Audio and Video Solutions 

Another area business and IT leaders need to address are the meeting spaces. With video being a staple of how organizations communicate and collaborate, the need to video-enable all your meeting rooms is important. Konftel and Logitech have made it easy to identify what solutions are best for your various meeting spaces with online room configuration tools. For small to medium meeting rooms, All-in-One Video Bars are a simple and cost-effective way to provide video. There are several options available when it comes to video conferencing. Take a look at these options from Yealink, Konftel, Logitech, Poly, and Jabra.  

Using Microsoft Teams or Zoom?  

Having a certified, reliable, and secure device that offers high-quality audio and video ensures clear conversations. Teams and Zoom certified devices include headsets, desk phones, speakerphones, and more. Whether working from home or on the go, there are Microsoft Teams and Zoom devices for you. 

Sharing Dry Erase Whiteboard in Video Meetings 

 Hybrid Work Work From Home Work In Office
Logitech Scribe

Dry Erase Whiteboards are great for education, training, and collaboration. They are still widely used. In the past, remote participants struggled to see what was on a whiteboard. Today solutions from Logitech, Jabra, and others, allow presenters to share content from the whiteboard in stunning fashion. Take a look at this quick Logitech Scribe demo from my HQ office!  

 Hybrid Work Work From Home Work In Office

In Summary 

As of today, people are working remotely, in an office, or both. The need to communicate and collaborate doesn’t change regardless of location. Business and IT leaders need to ensure their team members have the right tools for their role regardless of where their working. Call One, Inc. can help people do their business better. Contact us to learn which solutions are best for your team members!  

 

Business Webcam Battle

Battle of the $129 Business Webcam | Logitech C930e vs Poly Studio P5 vs Konftel Cam10

The Logitech C930e Business Webcam, Poly Studio P5, and Konftel Cam10 all have at least one thing in common: MSRP of $129.

These webcams were designed for business use with all the major video conferencing and collaboration platforms to include Skype for Business, Microsoft Teams, Zoom, Cisco Webex, and more. Below we have listed the features, functions, and specifications of each camera to help you make a more informed purchasing decision. We have also included a comparison video so you can see the video quality and hear the mic performance of each business webcam side-by-side. 

Logitech C930e Business Webcam

The C930e is a part of Logitech’s business Webcam lineup. With a full HD 1080p resolution and 90-degree field of view, this camera is packed with features.

  • HD 1080p video quality at 30 frames-per-second: Brings life-like HD video to conference calls, enabling expressions, non-verbal cues and movements to be seen clearly.
  • Widest-ever business webcam field-of-view: Enjoy an extended view – 90 degrees – perfect for presenting using a whiteboard or doing demos.
  • H.264 UVC 1.5 with Scalable Video Coding: Frees up PC bandwidth by putting video processing within the camera, adjusting dynamically to the available bitstream. The result is a smoother video stream in applications like Skype® for Business.
  • Logitech RightLightTM 2 technology and autofocus: Webcam intelligently adjusts to improve visual quality in low light at multiple distances
  • 4X digital zoom in Full HD: 4X zoom at 1080p provides the highest level of detail for your calls, visuals and presentations.
  • Pan, tilt and zoom option: Pan, tilt and zoom within the 90-degree field-of-view scene for focused viewing during desktop video conferences.
  • Professional-grade Certifications: Certified for Skype for Business, Cisco® compatible2and enhanced integration with Logitech Collaboration Program (LCP) members3 integrated experience with most business-grade video conferencing platforms
  • Premium glass lens: Enjoy razor-sharp images even when showing documents up close, a whiteboard drawing or a product demo.
  • Convenient privacy shutter: Easy lens enclosure for added privacy and security.
  • Plug-and-play USB connectivity: Easily connects to a PC or Mac® with no additional software required.
  • Multiple mounting options: Freedom to mount the camera wherever it works best – LCD screen, notebook, or tabletop – by using the attached clip or the tripod embedded thread.

Poly Studio P5

As of 4/22/2021, the Poly Studio P5 personal webcam is Microsoft Teams certified. Designed for business use, the P5 is both innovative and smart. One simple but important feature that makes it stand out from competitors is; the integrated USB port (see image below). This allows you to plug in an extra wireless headset, speakerphone, or other USB peripherals. Get a complete audio and video solution with the convenient and value-priced Poly Studio P5 Kits that include the camera and audio device.

  • Works with any video app and is certified for Microsoft Teams and Zoom
  • Low light quality & true-color images
  • 1080p (Full HD), 720P (HD) Compatible
  • Custom controls through Poly Lens Desktop
  • Autofocus with 4x zoom / EPTZ
  • Single directional microphone optimized for personal workspaces
  • 80° DFOV
  • USB 2.0
  • UVC/UAC Plug and Play compatible
  • Integrated USB 2.0 Type A cable
  • Integrated privacy shutter
  • Adjustable monitor clamp
  • Tripod ready
  • USB-A port built-in for wireless headset adapter
  • Status LED indicates calling and mute state
  • Manageability
    • Cloud: Poly Lens service
    • Local (Windows/Mac): Poly Lens Desktop App

Konftel Cam10

The Konftel Cam 10 is built for those who demand professional video quality. Create an enhanced visual and audio experience with a wide 90 degree viewing angle, HD video output, dual microphones and easy set-up. The portable Konftel Cam10 is your perfect home and traditional office companion, or for wherever you are working.

  • 1080p Full HD
  • 4x digital zoom
  • Digital picture noise suppression
  • Audio noise suppression
  • USB 2.0
  • Two-year warranty
  • 90° field of view
  • Autofocus
  • Dual microphones
  • Built-in privacy shutter
  • Climate Neutral Certified

In Conclusion

You can’t go wrong with any of these $129 Webcam options. It comes down to your personal preference and use case. Check out this blog on things to consider before buying a webcam. To get a better idea of how these webcams perform, take a look at this side-by-side comparison video! If you would like to learn more about these webcams or audio and video solutions for your employees and meeting spaces, contact us!

Jabra Speak 510

Jabra Speak 510 | Speakerphone Overview

The Jabra Speak 510 models are part of a larger Jabra Speak Series of speakerphones that include:  

Jabra Speak 810 UC and Microsoft Models – Premium professional conference speakerphones, designed to be used as a stationary unit and suitable for up to 16 people. 

Jabra Speak 750 Models – Engineered to power your meetings with seamless, premium audio. Full duplex sound for more natural conversations. Microsoft Teams certified models include dedicated Microsoft Teams button. 

Jabra Speak 710 Models – Professional portable conference call speakerphones with superior sound quality, suitable for up to 6 people. 

Jabra Speak 510 Models – Conference call speakerphones that offer amazing audio quality, suitable for up to 4 people.  

Jabra Speak 410 Models – Personal conference call speakerphones, designed to make collaboration easy and suitable for up to 4 people. USB-A connectivity only. 

Jabra USB Speakerphones are a great primary or secondary audio source to participate in audio calls across all major business communications and collaboration platforms like Microsoft Teams, Zoom, Cisco Webex and more. Convert into a complete video conferencing solution by adding the Jabra Panacast camera!  

Jabra Speak 510 Models

The Speak 510 models are Jabra’s top selling USB speakerphone for a reason. They just work. There are four Speak 510 models: with or without Jabra Link 370 USB Bluetooth adapter and available in UC and Microsoft variants. Want to know if you need UC or Microsoft variants? Watch these videos!  

What’s the difference between UC and MS Variants? (Created Oct 2020) 

The Difference Between Microsoft and UC Variants (Created Jan 2019) 

SKUMODELMSRP
7510-109 Jabra Speak 510 Microsoft $149.00
7510-209 Jabra Speak 510 UC $149.00 
7510-309 Jabra Speak 510+ Microsoft, with BT adapter $179.95
7510-409 Jabra Speak 510+ UC, with BT adapter $179.95

It’s slim and compact design includes cable management and a protective travel case that makes it a great hybrid work solution for anywhere you work.  

The Speak 510 is plug and play solution that ready to work when you are. Simply plug in the USB cable to your computer or connect via Bluetooth to your tablet or smartphone.  

Jabra Speak 510 Features

  • 15 hours of wireless talk-time (unlimited when corded) – 2-hour charge time. 
  • UC and Microsoft variants
  • Compact portable design lets you hold conference calls anywhere
  • Mic pick-up range 4.9ft (1.5m)
  • Bluetooth 3.0 – Supported Bluetooth profiles A2DP (v1.2), Hands Free Profile (v1.6), Headset Profile (v1.2), AG/HFP (V1.6) Smart button (off by default) – Interact with your voice assistant, Siri®, Google Assistant™ or MS Cortana (smartphone dependent) or make a speed dial with the one-touch Smart button – Only available for Speak 510/Speak 510+ (with Smart button) version D/F or later. Must first be configured in Jabra Direct app. Download the app at https://www.calloneinc.com/jabra-direct-xpress/  
  • 2 Year Warranty 
  • See Full Speak 510 Tech Specs Here 

In Conclusion

The Jabra Speak 510 UC or MS is a great audio device solution for an individual or small group of up to 4 people. You can use it for voice and video meetings from your computer or mobile device across all major business communications platforms and apps. You can also stream audio from your mobile device in between calls. The Speak 510 is very simple to use and transport. At a starting price of only $149 it’s priced just right. 

If you need audio or video conferencing solutions to support larger groups or large meeting spaces, contact us! Curious to see the Speak 510 in action? Check out the video below! 

UC Speakerphones Hybrid Work

Top 5 Picks for UC USB Speakerphones for Hybrid Work and Work from Home

One thing we have all learned from countless hours of video meetings via Zoom, Microsoft Teams, Cisco Webex, and more is that audio is critical. Don’t get me wrong, great video resolution from a business webcam certainly enhances the overall experience. But, if you cannot hear or be heard, the productivity of the video meeting suffers.

Corded USB Headsets and Wireless Headsets certainly fit the bill when it comes to providing professional-grade audio quality. Those fortunate enough to have a dedicated workspace in their home or corporate office may find a personal USB Speakerphone to be extremely beneficial. They are a great primary or secondary audio device. As organizations develop device standards for hybrid and remote work, USB speakerphones should be included as options. USB Speakerphones offer these key features:

  • Always On – Every speakerphone listed in this blog has a USB cable that can be used to power the speakerphone when connected to a computer. No need to change batteries or use an additional AC power supply. Just plug into your computers USB port to start using.
  • Mute feature – When on a call, the mute button is your friend. These speakerphones have a prominent mute button that allows you to quickly mute to block out undesired noise from pets, children, lawn mowers, blenders, significant others or even a cough or sneeze from you!

I have tested several personal USB Speakerphones from these leading brands: Poly, Jabra, EPOS, Konftel, Yealink, and Yamaha UC. You can check out the multiple test videos in this Business Personal and Small Group Speakerphones Video Playlist.

Price

Personal USB Speakerphones range in price from MSRP of $99.95 for a basic Poly Calisto 3200 all the way to $329 for the premium Jabra Speak 750 and $349 for the Yamaha UC YVC-330 that supports up to six people.

Connectivity

Beyond, USB-A or USB-C corded connectivity, some speakerphones offer USB Bluetooth dongles for wireless connectivity to your computer and Bluetooth and/or NFC pairing to your mobile device. Some include a 3.5mm jack and select models include a 3.5mm headset port.

The 3.5mm headset port is an ideal option for use cases that require the user to switch from public to private conversation by simply plugging in a 3.5mm headset. These models offer this feature:

Models with Bluetooth and/or NFC are great for pairing your mobile device. This greatly improves the overall audio quality of voice calls and streaming music and media! Please note that not all Bluetooth models include a USB dongle for wireless connectivity to your computer.

Compatibility

Business-grade speakerphones are compatible with all major communications and collaboration platforms like Microsoft Teams, Zoom, Cisco Webex, 8×8, and more.

Select models have met Microsoft Teams specification certification requirements. This peripheral certification program ensures USB devices like headsets, speakerphones, and webcams are plug and play and will work, to include call control with no extra configuration required. Some devices are Skype for Business certified with Teams upgrade. Newer devices will be Certified for Microsoft Teams and include a dedicated Teams button with LED indicator.

Full Duplex

Full duplex speakerphones allow a more natural conversation since both parties can transmit audio simultaneously. Most speakerphones support half-duplex where each party can transmit audio one at a time. Currently only select USB speakerphones have full-duplex audio.

My Top 5 Picks for USB Speakerphones 

For over a year, like many I have been working from home. As empty-nesters, my wife and I are fortunate to each have dedicated rooms in our house to use as offices. She is a Director of Human Resources and like me spends a lot of time on voice and video calls. My wife has long curly hair, so headsets are not her friend. She prefers to use a speakerphone. I spend most of my days on video calls or, filming videos for our YouTube Channel. Even back in our corporate HQ, I had a dedicated office so my set ups are similar minus the revolving door of people that would physically come in and out of my office. Now it is IM’s, texts, and impromptu video meetings. Because I test audio and video devices as part of my role, I have several devices always connected.  

Please note, no manufacturer is paying me, and I am not in any affiliate program. These are my picks based on my personal tests and preferences. 


1. Jabra Speak 750 – This is my current default USB speakerphone. The audio quality is superb, and I love the kickstand feature which helps to reduce the footprint and direct the audio towards me. And, like the Jabra Speak 710, it has the Link button that allows you to wirelessly pair two Speak 750’s to cover a larger area. Check out this video comparing the Speak 710 and Speak 750! 

2. Poly Sync 20 – I love the way this sounds when streaming music! In addition to the Jabra Speak 750, I have the Poly Sync 20 paired to my mobile device so I can play music in between video meetings and if I happen to get a mobile call, I use it for improved audio quality. As an added feature, I take advantage of the USB port to keep my mobile phone charged! Get a complete audio and video solution with the Poly Studio P5 Webcam with Poly Sync 20 for only $249.95! See and hear the Poly Sync 20 in action! Check out this video on the Poly Studio P5!   

3. Yealink CP700 – This is the younger sibling of the Yealink CP900, but I must tell you, I’m a fan of the kickstand feature. The audio quality is very consistent throughout calls across multiple platforms and it is priced at MSRP of only $129! (currently on our website Yealink CP700 only $104.95!). Unlike the other models that provide a neoprene carry case, the Yealink CP700 and CP900 include a solid, sturdy carry case to provide greater protection as you travel back and forth between locations. Watch this Yealink CP700 vs CP900 Video! 

4. Yamaha UC YVC-200 (Black or White) – Yamaha UC solutions don’t get enough attention in my opinion and they have great sounding products. All speakerphones mentioned have a Microphone Mute button so the other party cannot hear anything you are saying. The YVC-200 also includes a Speaker Mute button. Let’s say I’m jamming out to some music via the YVC-200 and my wife comes in to ask me something, I can very quickly hit the speaker mute button to quickly stop the sound. You can also get complete audio and video solution including the YVC-200 with these bundles.  

5. Jabra Speak 510 – This rounds out my list. This is a solid performer that has been around since 2013. This speakerphone just works. Plug it in and start using it across all collaboration platforms. And would you believe I don’t have a video on this device? I have added to my list of videos to film. You cannot go wrong with the Jabra Speak 510.  

When it comes to audio devices, it is important to stick with leaders in this space who develop solutions that provide professional audio quality, are easy to set up and use, and are compatible across all business collaboration platforms. As an authorized partner and reseller, Call One, Inc. can help guide you to which audio and video devices are best for your organization and multiple use cases. Contact us to learn how we can help you do your business better!

Poly Studio P15 | Overview

The Poly Studio P15 is a personal video bar that includes 4K camera, integrated privacy shutter, speakers, multi-microphone array and two USB 2.0 Type-A ports and several nice features like Noise BlockAI and Acoustic Fence. We’ve been using the Poly Studio P15 for a week across multiple video platforms to include Zoom and Microsoft Teams.

We have been really impressed with the performance across the board. In this blog/video we cover the connections, USB-C to USB-C cable length, Mounting options, and Poly Lens Desktop App Controls and Settings. Stick around until the end for a link to our showcase video.

What are the Studio P15 Specs?

Features

MSRP: $599.99

  • Personal Video bar
  • Look and sound your best on video calls with one sleek device
  • Easy fits atop your display, or tripod mount for flexibility
  • Robust cloud management using Poly Lens
  • Robust cloud management using Poly Lens
  • Certified for Zoom and Microsoft Teams
  • Includes mounting clamp that attaches to a standard 1/4-20 tripod screw thread on the bottom of the device
  • 4K Resolution
  • NoiseBlockAI
  • Cable Length: 4 feet 3 inches
  • 1x USB 3.0 Type-C port (with USB 2.0 compatibility)
  • 2x USB 2.0 Type-A ports

In Conclusion:

In our professional opinion, the Poly Studio P15 is a great value at only $599 MSRP. You get exceptional video and audio quality. It’s compatible across all major business collaboration platforms to include Zoom and Microsoft Teams. And, features like AcousticFence, NoiseBlockAI, Auto-Framing, and two additional USB Ports make this a great option for any business professional. If you’d like to learn more or get a quote, contact us.

Remember Huddle Rooms

Remember when Huddle Rooms were all the rage?

Remember when huddle rooms were all the rage? All the top research and analyst firms had a ton of statistics like there were 32+ million huddle rooms globally with less than two percent being video enabled and that huddle-room meetings would grow exponentially to represent almost 70% of all video conferencing room meetings by 2022. Those statistics had manufacturers and businesses working overtime to ensure huddle rooms had the appropriate tech to support this boom.

No one expected what happened in 2020. Video conferencing did increase exponentially however, not in huddle rooms. Instead, people joined video calls right from the comfort (or discomfort) of their homes.

Because of COVID-19 there has been a huge increase in desktop video, remote learning and telehealth.

So what happens to all those huddle rooms? I don’t believe huddle spaces are going the way of the dodo bird however, their design and use may be different. Many organizations are retrofitting and redesigning their meeting spaces to support the new normal where health and safety are of utmost concern. They are reducing the number of people by 50% or more depending on size of room to maintain social distancing guidelines.

Some companies are in the process of implementing or are developing hybrid strategies that encompass a mix of in-office and remote work schedules. Some are considering making them private workspaces or a room where an individual can conduct training to the masses via video. And some businesses, haven’t done anything at all. The spaces are just sitting there as their teams continue to work from home.

Regardless, video conferencing and collaboration is here to stay. Brands like Logitech, Konftel, Yealink, Jabra and Poly have developed a broad range of video solutions to support any size room across the multiple video platforms like Zoom and Microsoft Teams.

We’re interested in hearing what your business is doing with huddle rooms. Drop us a comment. If you would like to learn more about video conferencing solutions for your meeting spaces, contact us!

L

Lessons Learned in 2020 from WFH and Zooming

When we were all first sent to work from home, it was going to be a temporary thing. Many went home with minimal tools with the understanding they would be back in the office in a couple weeks. Weeks turned into months. Almost a year later and I am still working from home for the foreseeable future. Some organizations have elected to make remote work a permanent thing, so what lessons were learned in 2020 WFH and Zooming?

So what did I learn?

The ability to communicate and collaborate effectively is paramount. 2020 is the year when Zoom became a verb. Everyone was “Zooming”. (Even though other video platforms were also being used.) From company and team meetings, to virtual game nights, happy hours, and holiday celebrations, you Zoomed them. Regardless of video platform, these two things became very important:

  • Audio and Video Quality

Although video is extremely important, I am going to give audio quality a higher level of importance. How many video meetings did you attend where this happened?

  • “We can see you but can’t hear you”
  • “Are you muted?”
  • “Can you hear us?”
  • “Whoever is making that noise, can you please mute?”

Learning how to select the appropriate audio device via the various platforms is a first step. Knowing how to turn your video on and off is also key. And please learn how to mute and unmute. We all had moments where we saw and/or heard more than we should.

If you are like me, you utilized multiple video meeting platforms beyond Zoom to include Microsoft Teams, Cisco Webex, Google Meet, and more.

I am very fortunate that my role requires me to test multiple audio and video devices from leading brands like Jabra, Logitech, Poly, Cisco and EPOS, along with lesser-known brands like Konftel, JPL, Yealink and VDO360.

While open offices can be noisy environments, working from home present different sources of noise like other adults, children, pets, televisions, doorbells, lawn mowers, and other domestic noise! Some folks also deal with other sources of noise like trains, planes, traffic, construction and more!

Fortunately, there is no shortage of options when it comes to audio and video devices for WFH.

Audio Solutions for WFH

The audio quality from the built-in speakers and mics in a laptop are typically subpar. A professional grade corded USB headset will provide a much better audio experience for you and your audience. Additionally, many headsets offer the ability to answer and end calls, adjust volume up or down, and to enable the all-important mute function via an inline control or through the headset itself. Some headsets even offer a cool feature that places you on mute by simply flipping the boom arm up. If you need the flexibility to roam around your home office, it is best to get a Bluetooth or DECT wireless headset. Imagine having the ability to remain in a call while helping your kids start their online school, going to the kitchen for more coffee, or to go get your food delivery from the front door? Wireless headsets allow you to do this.

Another great feature that some headsets offer is Active Noise Canceling (ANC) speakers that help block out distracting noise and allow you to focus on your call or work.

Personally, I use a USB speakerphone. Speakerphones are a great option especially if you are in a “listen-only” webinar or conference call. Some offer full-duplex audio which allows for multiple users to communicate simultaneously.  Bluetooth and NFC are available in some speakerphone models to support pairing to your mobile device. Personally, I use two speakerphones. I use one connected to my PC for voice and video calls. The other is paired to my mobile device for streaming music.

Have a hard time deciding? Look at these videos!

Headset, Webcam, and Speakerphone Comparison Videos

Headset Mic Test Videos

Speakerphone Review and Audio Quality Test Videos

Video Solutions for WFH

The built-in camera in your laptop typically provides horrible video quality. During 2020 I had the privilege of testing several webcams and cameras. I learned that 1080p means something different to the various manufacturers. Many claimed 1080p but the video quality I experienced was not quite what I expected. I guess Logitech spoiled me and the rest of us. In my opinion, they continue to be the standard when it comes to video quality. That’s not to say other brands didn’t hold their own. In addition to video resolution quality, other factors to consider when selecting a webcam are:

Field of View (FOV)

Today webcams and cameras offer a FOV of 54 to 360 degrees! Essentially the lower the degrees, the less you see, and the higher, the more you see. Some folks prefer not to expose too much of their environment and surroundings to the outside world. While some would like as much of the room or space in view. Your individual use case will always determine what is best for you. Some cameras have software available that allows you to adjust FOV and other settings to improve overall video quality and experience.

Webcam System Requirements

Not every webcam works with every computer or operating system. Make a note of your computer and operating system, then check the requirements for the webcam. ​

Compatible and Certified

Beyond system and operating system requirements select webcams are compatible or certified for major platforms like Microsoft Teams, Cisco® Jabber®, Spark™, WebEx®, Zoom, Google Meet, Bluejeans, and more! ​

Built-in Microphone

Some webcams provide built-in microphones that are pretty good and some that are not. Check out these webcam videos that include mic tests! However, having a built-in microphone is beneficial in some use cases especially those with limited USB ports. A USB Headset or Speakerphone typically provide improved audio quality.

Privacy Shutter

Webcam privacy shutters/cover webcam lens to prevent others from “seeing” what the camera sees. ​ Some webcams have built-in shutters. ​ Some webcams provide lens cover you can affix to webcam. ​ Some webcams do not provide privacy shutter or cover. If privacy is important, please check to see if the webcam of interest includes a cover or not.

Cable Length

It is critical that you understand where end-user wishes to mount camera vs where camera will be connected. ​Cable lengths vary from webcam to webcam. 3ft – 6ft appear to be average cable lengths however some have shorter cables​.

While you can use a USB extension cable do not assume it will work. In order to maintain support for USB 2.0 or 3.0 requirements, there may be cable length restrictions, or you may need special powered USB cable (and even this may not work).

Other features:

  • Pan, Tilt, Zoom (PTZ) – Manual, Digital, Software based
  • Device Management Software
  • Windows Hello support
  • Built-in AI
  • Auto-framing, Intelligent Zoom
  • Tripod-ready and other mounting options
  • Rightlight2 Technology for clarity in various lighting environments
  • Autofocus

The point is, while a low-cost headset or webcam may sound appealing, it may not be the best solution for your use case today and in the future? Reminder, what started out as a short-term scenario has become long-term and permanent for many. Do you have the best tools to be as productive as possible while Zooming? To learn more about these solutions, contact us M-F, 8am-5pm ET! 📞 1-800-749-3160 or 📨 sales@calloneonline.com

Best headsets and speakerphones for Zoomsgiving

Best Webcams and Speakerphones for Zoomsgiving and other celebrations!

The year is 2020 and we’ve done virtually everything…virtually. The holidays are no different. Many will be celebrating physically apart connected via video meeting platform from Zoom, Microsoft, Cisco, Google, or other available options.

The focus of this blog will center around things to consider when selecting a webcam or camera to capture the moment this Zoomsgiving or other celebrations! Two key things to consider are the field of view (FOV) and audio. Celebrations will range from one to one, one to many, and many to many. In order to capture everyone in the frame, a wider field of view is optimal. FOV ranges from 54 degrees to 180 degrees depending on brand and camera model. Some brands offer software that allows you to adjust FOV and other settings to improve overall video quality.

Smartphones and tablets today have nice built-in cameras that can access multiple video meeting and conferencing apps like Zoom, Microsoft Teams, Cisco Webex, Google Meet, etc. Enjoy the moment by getting a stand or mount to hold the phone or tablet. Depending on where you position the smartphone, you may want to consider a Bluetooth Speakerphone to set in the middle of the table so everyone can hear and be heard.

Best Webcams and Speakerphones for Zoomsgiving
Mobile image quality

Many laptops have built-in cameras, microphones, and speakers. The video quality may not be the best and almost always, the built-in audio in laptops is horrendously bad. It’s best to look at an external webcam and audio device for Zoom or Teams conferencing.

Best Webcams and Speakerphones for Zoomsgiving
Laptop image quality

The new Logitech C505e offers a FOV of 60 degrees. (Watch Logitech C505e Video). This tighter shot is great for one person.

These cameras offer a wider field of view that can be adjusted via remote control or software:

Watch the video to see these cameras in action to see some of the best webcams and speakerphones for Zoomsgiving!

Lastly, you will want to look at a good USB or Bluetooth speakerphone designed to work with the various video meeting platforms and applications. Strongly consider a speakerphone that offers full duplex for more natural conversation. The new Jabra Speak 750 and Poly Sync 20 offer full-duplex audio while on Zoom calls!

Jabra Speak 750 video https://youtu.be/ANwzNdCEXrY

Poly Sync 20 video https://youtu.be/GkbPGy-aYWg

See a full list of webcams and speakerphones here!

Why Jabra PanaCast?

By Danny Hayasaka

August 13, 2019

Jabra acquired Altia Systems in February 2019. In June 2019 they announced Jabra PanaCast. Since then, there’s been a lot of buzz.

 

Why? Jabra PanaCast has a lot of really cool technology in a small little package.

Read more