At Microsoft Ignite in October 2022, a new 360 degree FoV camera was announced - the Yealink SmartVision 60. Read on for Bryan's take on this new camera and 360 imaging technology for conference rooms.
Microsoft announced IntelliFrame at Ignite. This feature, expected to be available in early 2023, intends to "enhance the focus and framing of in-room meeting attendees". A difficulty exists in trying to do this from a traditional front of room camera simply due to the location of participants as they are seated in a typical meeting room. This seemingly is what lead to the SmartVision 60 camera to aid in capturing individuals around a table.
From the press release:
"We are thrilled to announce one of these cameras this year at Ignite. The Yealink SmartVision 60 intelligent camera, available in early 2023, is the first center-of-room, 360 panoramic degree camera designed for Teams Rooms. Microsoft engineers, in partnership with Yealink, Intel, NVIDIA, and Ricoh, designed and built one of the most powerful AI cameras in the industry from the ground up, including the AI director, the form factor, the firmware, and the software, using the Microsoft Intelligent Camera Hardware and Software reference design kit. Yealink SmartVision 60 also includes all the great features of Microsoft Teams intelligent speakers, including people identification in live transcription and Cortana digital assistant."
360 degree cameras for video conferencing are nothing new and products have been available for nearly a decade. More recent 360 degree cameras utilize their own cropping/framing method independent of the meeting service. The new Yealink camera is the first designed for Teams Rooms, however, and will use the IntelliFrame technology for framing within the service.
I am on the fence on table-based cameras. I like how Logitech is approaching it with two cameras, as long as the technology can keep up and frame people accurately. A single, table based camera will result in eye contact issues if there is a display on the wall (which is the display's typical location) depending on location of the user. The SmartVision, or any 360 degree camera, will have eye contact issues. Of that there is no doubt unless multiple displays are in the room. Will users prefer a better cropping experience at the sacrifice of eye contact?
It's unknown for us at this time if there will be compatibility with other meeting services / room systems or if Yealink will develop a Zoom Room flavor or a generic model.
Read the entire press release here:
Yealink's webpage for the SmartVision 60:
This blog is based on the announcement from Microsoft and details from Yealink's website. We did not receive a demo and no hands-on testing was performed at the time of this blog.