It’s been more than two months since Microsoft rolled out the Anniversary Update to Windows 10 devices. This week, Surface Hub is getting in on the action.
The company announced on Oct. 13 that the feature-packed update for Surface Hub is currently being released through Windows Update. It may take a while for customers to notice a change. Microsoft is issuing the update in stages, with the hopes of upgrading all Surface Hubs by early November.
Microsoft also provided a glimpse into how the bundled digital whiteboard, teleconferencing and collaboration product is performing in the market. Since shipments began in March, more than 600 customers across 24 countries have snapped up a Surface Hub. According to Julia Atalla, senior director of Microsoft Surface Marketing, early customers include the European School of Management and Technology, The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia and SHoP Architects.
Designed to hang on the wall of a conference or board room, the Windows 10-powered device includes a touch-screen with stylus support (55-inch HD or 84-inch 4K), built-in cameras and microphones into an all-in-one unit that can replace a projector, speaker phone and video conferencing system. The 55-inch model costs $8,999 while the 84-inch version sells for $21,999.
Once the update is applied, customers have new input capabilities at their disposal, including simultaneous pen and touch, enabling multiple users to interact with data using the Surface stylus and/or their fingers. The update also includes inking support for popular Office applications, namely Word, Excel and PowerPoint. A new Draw toolbar has been added to the ribbon, providing users with access to a smattering of inking tools.
A new OneDrive integration streamlines the process of accessing saved whiteboard sessions.
“One of the most loved features of Surface Hub is the ability to send whiteboards to meeting participants via email as [an] image or OneNote file,” Atalla wrote in a blog post. “Now, we’ve added the ability to sign in, to save and recall Whiteboards directly from OneDrive. This helps people pick up right where their last meeting ended with a simple and secure sign-in experience.”
The update also preloads Power BI, OneDrive and the Photos apps onto the Surface Hub and adds Flash support to Edge. Skype for Business gains Video Based Screen Sharing support along with a host of content-sharing and performance enhancements.
Although the Surface Hub includes practically all of the hardware required to conduct a remote meeting, some organizations may want to use some of their existing devices with the system. For those customers, the company has added support for third-party peripherals.
So far, the BiAmp TesiraForte CI, Polycom CX5100, Jabra 810 and Logitech Group and PTZ Pro have been successfully tested. Microsoft is working with its hardware partners and will be announcing more compatible hardware in the months ahead, said Atalla. The Surface Hub can also now replicates HDCP-protected (High-bandwidth Digital Content Protection) content to external monitors.