Zoom isn't out of the woods with its security issues just yet, but the company continues to press forward during this time of unprecedented growth in work from home and video conferencing. And now the company is branching into hardware.
In partnership with Dten, a San Jose-based company, Zoom has developed a 27-inch touch-screen display called the DTEN ME. It has integrated cameras, mics and stereo speakers to provide workers at home with a simple dedicated solution for Zoom conferencing (via PCMag).
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Zoom refers to the DTEN ME as "an all-in-one personal collaboration device. With a 27-inch touchscreen, three built-in smart cameras and an 8-microphone array, it certainly will be an upgrade to most Zoom user's current setups, which probably involves a terrible laptop webcam. The goal is for users to have a simple and effective method to join meetings in an instant.
The device has support for all of the advanced Zoom features, like content sharing, interactive whiteboarding and co-annotation. DTEN claims that its Audio AI helps to identify and reduce background noise to produce "crystal clear audio."
The DTEN ME also includes an HDMI port so that it can double as an external or secondary monitor when it isn't doing Zoom duty. The 1080p resolution isn't great for a 27-inch monitor, but it's a nice add on to allow users to get some extra use out of the device.
Connectivity options are pretty solid with an RJ45 Ethernet port, WiFi 802.11 a/b/g/n and an AC adapter, but it's a bit disappointing to not find Wi-Fi 6 on board at this stage.
The DTEN ME is available for pre-order directly from DTEN starting today for $599 and is expected to start shipping in August.
Zoom for Home
The DTEN ME is the first new product in what Zoom is calling Zoom for Home, which will supposedly "allow anyone to deploy a dedicated personal collaboration device for video meetings, phones calls, and interactive whiteboarding."
There are some existing products in the market that Zoom is now categorizing as Zoom for Home Appliances, including products from Neat, Poly, and DTEN. These include options that resemble a soundbar with integrated cameras and microphones as well as a larger touchscreen display option from DTEN. It's worth noting that these are all much higher-end than the DTEN ME and start at around $2,500.
Even with the lowest end option at $599, Zoom is aware that it is targeting the power users who rely on the software as their primary mode of communication. It also is trying to appeal to IT admins due to easy installation and management and, of course, remote educators with the whiteboarding and co-annotation functionality.