French startup Klaxoon announces a product update for its whiteboard collaboration platform as well as a new hardware product. With Hybridity, the company will sell out-of-the-box conference rooms that optimize hybrid meetings between people currently in the office and people on the go.
Let’s start with updating the software. Last year, the company unveiled Board, a visual interface that lets you work together on a video call. It allows you to share ideas and collaborate using a whiteboard interface. You can create sticky notes, add text, insert images, move items, and start a video call from there.
Other people on calls are represented by tiny tiles so you can stay focused on the digital whiteboard. You can also connect Board to your existing video conferencing tool.
This week, the company updates Board and renames it to Board Hybrid. “This is the new version of Board which is not only designed for remote work, but also for hybrid work,” founder and CEO Matthieu Beucher said at a press conference.
Board Hybrid users can now add any type of file to their whiteboard. That way, they don’t have to upload files to a shared drive, link, and paste the link into the whiteboard. Users can preview PowerPoint presentations, Word files, spreadsheets and more directly from the Klaxoon interface.
There are new drawing tools, including new connectors. For example, you can create mind maps from there. You can now also share your screen from Klaxoon’s videoconferencing solution.
The new product is something quite different – it’s a meeting room called Hybridity. It looks like a hexagonal shaped space capsule. There is no window and it looks like a black box from the outside.
Inside you’ll find three seats, three screens, three cameras and three Klaxoon Box devices. “Everyone can see everyone perfectly and everyone can immerse themselves in the content,” said Beucher.
If you’ve joined a hybrid meeting from home, you are well aware of the issues with this setup. Part of the team is seated in the same room. They look like tiny action figures and you can’t tell who’s talking.
With this setup, Klaxoon hopes that it will be easier to organize meetings with people in the office and people at home. A Klaxoon Hybridity conference room requires 5 square meters. You can put it in a corner and move it to another location a few years later. It is not fixed to the ground.
Pre-orders will begin this week. The company plans to sell Hybridity on a subscription model with prices starting at € 2,000 per month. It will be interesting to see if Klaxoon has found a new source of income. It’s just a fun experience. But it could replace those tiny phone booths in your office.