Microsoft’s new digital whiteboard improves your presentations

By: Matthew Adams
2 minute read

Computex is one of the largest annual trade shows where companies show off their latest hardware in June. Microsoft has just shown off an entirely new breed of digital whiteboards from third-party manufacturers at Computex 2018. There Microsoft announced the first Windows Collaborative Displays (from Sharp and Avocore) for its 365 collaboration software.

The Windows Collaborative Displays might, at first glance, look little more than giant VDUs (Visual Display Units). However, they are quite a bit more than that. They are, in fact, digital whiteboards that you can utilize to project connected laptops on a much larger display. Furthermore, you can also scribble on the Windows Collaborative Displays with a stylus. As such, they are primarily presentation displays.

Sharp produced the Windows Collaborative Display Microsoft showcased at Computex. That Windows Collaborative Display is designed specifically for Microsoft 365 software, which includes Office 365, Teams and Whiteboard. The Sharp Windows Collaborative Display shown at Computex was connected to a Windows 10 laptop running PowerPoint.

Microsoft says that the Windows Collaborative Display is a new hardware category. However, it is, in fact, comparable to the Microsoft’s Surface Hub and Samsung Flip whiteboard. The one notable difference is that the Surface Hub and Flip do not project displays from connected devices. As such, they are digital whiteboards that incorporate their own hardware.

Microsoft did not provide many details for the Windows Collaborative Display specifications. However, the Sharp model showcased at Computex has a display that measures in at 70 inches. That model also includes a conference camera and sensors for Microsoft Azure Internet of Things connectivity.

Microsoft provided no release date or specific RRP details for the Windows Collaborative Displays. The digital whiteboards will probably launch before the end of 2018. Just remember that Windows Collaborative Displays are primarily designed for business purposes, so they aren’t something you can utilize for standard dual-monitor setups.

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