Google announced a new hardware product on Tuesday under its newly branded G Suite work application team. And it is a massive digital whiteboard.
Called the Google Jamboard, it is a 55-inch display monitor that resembles a tablet, only that it is blown up in size and connected to Google's cloud service.
The Jamboard connects via Wi-Fi network and starts off as a blank white screen on which users can write or draw anything using a specially designed stylus marker. Erasing the info written on the whiteboard can be done with the hands or eraser. Also, it comes with collaborative tools that allow several people to share and access materials via the device wherever they may be.
How It Works
Users can directly pull files from Google Drive, or drag and drop images or PDF files. It is also possible to search photos, or even the worldwide web, within the Jamboard. Once all the materials are on the Jamboard, the people connected to it can annotate the materials, the same as scribbling on a tablet or smartphone using a stylus.
Since everything found on the screen will be directly saved in Google's cloud servers and not the Jamboard device itself, anyone can access it across multiple devices from different locations all at once.
So for example, someone from New York wants to share the Jamboard with another person in San Francisco. Granting that both persons have access to the same G Suite app account, which is compatible with both Android and iOS, they could add content in real time simultaneously whether they are using the Jamboard concurrently with a smartphone or tablet.
Simply, it works similar as how teams can do using Google Docs and other G Suite products.
Contents found on the Jamboard will be saved under Google's new file format called JAM, for people to save or pass it around. Google Hangouts, the messaging app, has also been embedded within the device so doing live video chats is highly likely with the Jamboard.
Google wanted the Jamboard to help speed up team collaborations and create new ideas with ease. So, it made the 55-inch display screen capable of 4K resolution with the best touch response feature. It also has an HD camera, Wi-Fi connectivity, and speakers.
Currently, Google is beta testing the results by working closely with companies such as Spotify and Netflix. And so far, the feedback are relatively positive. Eventually, it wants to expand the Jamboard's platform to a wider audience to allow developers to create apps optimized for the digital whiteboard.
Availability And Price
The Jamboard will initially be available to G Suite customers through its Early Adopter Program. The product will start going on sale in the early part of 2017.
At the moment, Google has not announced an exact price for the digital whiteboard. But the device will not come cheap as Google mentioned it will be under $6,000 with the stylus and eraser sold separately for $9.99 each.