New ASUS Starter Kit for Google Meet HardwareJune 25, 2020
Over recent months, we’ve seen Google step up to the challenges of Covid-19 by announcing a series of updates to its products, including tools like Google Workspace (formerly G Suite) and Google Voice. Google Meet appears to be the latest tool to receive some shiny updates, with ASUS releasing their own kits of sleek new hardware. This week, Damson Cloud’s Fintan Murphy talks us through the updates and what they will mean for your next video conference. Thank us later!
Before we go into detail about the new update, let’s take a step back and look at who ASUS are. ASUS is a leading producer of Google Meet hardware, with many of their products recommended by Google and its network of Partners. They came out with the CN60, launched in 2014 and going on to receive praise from the industry as a whole. Most of these kits come equipped with a microphone that’s compatible with Google Meet, and we’ve seen lots of updates to these kits since their original launch.
Awesome Updates for a Classic Tool
ASUS’ primary updates are to this piece of kit, and some of them are quite exciting. There are three kinds of video conferencing kits available at the moment: a starter kit, a kit for a small-to-medium sized room and a kit for large rooms. There are a number of features which separate these kits from each other, but the most noticeable difference is the starter kit’s lack of Mimo touch screen. For businesses who haven’t had much need for the screen previously, this could come as a welcome development as it also dramatically reduces the cost.
The first kit comes with a nifty little remote and keyboard, which is great for those working in a smaller recording space. Meanwhile, for small-to-medium-sized rooms, kits come equipped with the brains of the operation - the Chromebox itself, now called the Google Meet Compute System. However, at Damson Cloud we’re really excited by the inclusion of Huddly cameras in the kit - we tried these bad boys out for ourselves in a visit to Stockholm last year and we were well impressed. With enhanced noise reduction features, a glass optics 4K image sensor and 150 degree diagonal view, the embedded mount and built-in tripod make this piece of kit super-convenient.
Larger meeting room (up to 20 people) kits come with all the essential starting tools - however, please bear in mind that you will have to buy your own camera separately. Don’t panic too much if you’re unsure of what camera to pick, or if you haven’t done your research - when dealing with Google Partners, various tools and products will come highly recommended. It’s important to listen to trusted voices here: Google has an established set of qualified peripherals that are guaranteed to work with the Google Meet Hardware Kits, awarding compatible status based on parameters including quality, reliability, and interoperability. In this case, the recommended camera is the Logitech PTZ Pro 2 Camera, and you can check out the full specs for it here.
The all new Google Meet Compute System
Let’s take a look at some of the specs in these updated toolkits. All kits come fully equipped with the ASUS Google Meet Compute System - Google’s fresh rebrand of the Chromebox. Meanwhile, the Starter and Small/Medium Room kits come with the Huddly IQ Camera, and the starter kit comes with the Google Remote. Meanwhile, the other two kits offer a Mimo touch screen, allowing you to jump in and out of meetings in an instant. All kits come equipped with a single speaker mic and three years warranty. For larger meetings, we recommend buying more of these microphones and daisy-chaining them together.
We know that all kits offer a fully-upgraded ASUS Google Meet Compute System. But how does it compare to previous systems? For a start, we’ve seen significant improvements in the overall performance of the system. Aside from this, there’s been improvements to the overall longevity of the system, and this will be of particular benefit to larger organisations who typically need larger deployments of Google Meet hardware.
There’s a lot to like about these sleek little kits from ASUS. We love the new, slim and compact design. What’s more, it can be mounted and comes with a magnetic bracket - perfect for setting up a conference in rooms that you may be unfamiliar with. This feature alone makes its one of the most convenient video conferencing kits out there. The input/output ports are on the rear of the device, making it that little bit more accessible.
The remote control for the starter kit allows you to join a meeting at the click of the button, and comes with a great little keyboard on the tripod side. It also allows you to mute and unmute the microphone and adjust the microphone. There’s also new compatibility with Google Assistant, which should be great news for those of you who signed up for the beta programme.
More About Damson Cloud
All of these shiny new kits from ASUS will be available this summer, and we’re hoping to get our hands on a kit of our own in the coming weeks. Of course, you can read more about the specs on Google’s G Suite Updates Blog. When we get ours, we’ll treat our followers to an unboxing and a bit of a demonstration, so watch this space. In the meantime, what Google Meet hardware are you using to join meetings? Let us know in the comments!
As a longstanding member of the Google Cloud Partner program, Damson Cloud specialises in bringing people and ideas together through new ways of working. We champion change management and digital transformation using some of the internet’s most trusted solutions, including Google Workspace, Happeo and Jamboard. To find out more about our services, check out our library of tutorial videos or our blog.