MICROSOFT RECKONS IT'S GOT future office tech nailed down with the Surface Hub 2, a digital flipchart meets easel that looks like just the device for so-called 'creatives' to show off their work.
Following on from the first-generation Surface Hub, which we must say we haven't seen in many UK offices though Microsoft says it has flogged the Hub to more than 5,000 businesses, the Surface Hub 2 is one flashy looking device.
It rocks a 50.5in display, which is around five inches smaller than its predecessor but comes in a 4K resolution rather than 1080p, and has a 3:2 aspect ratio, slim bezels and can be flipped horizontally as well as sit vertically.
Like the original Surface Hub, the second-gen device has been designed with office collaboration in mind, with far-field microphones built-in for group video conferencing, the ability for different users to login and show their work via a fingerprint scanner, and a software suite optimised for use with Microsoft Teams - Redmond's group chat and teamwork software.
Now you might think that a fancy display used for showing off work is flashy but nothing special, after all, there are similar 'collaboration' display gadgets around such as Samsung's Flip or Google's Jamboard.
But the interesting thing with the Surface Hub 2 is that multiple displays can be connected together to make a single wall of slick screens, thanks to a removable webcam. Fitted together each display can be used to show individual pages of say a presentation or be used to display one large single image. If the pics are to be believed, it looks pretty impressive.
Microsoft hasn't revealed a release date or pricing for the Surface Hub 2, but given the first one started at £5,709 we doubt the second-gen display will be much cheaper, though Microsoft could have a lease program to get the Hub 2 into businesses without forcing them to shell out a hefty wad of cash.
There'll be an early adopter program starting towards the end of the year, but wider availability of the Surface Hub 2 is expected next year. µ
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