Meet Microsoft's US$9,000 business computer

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Meet Microsoft's US$9,000 business computer

Microsoft's very fancy way to present to or work with your clients or colleagues is about to get fancier.

If you’re an architect, digital producer, scientist, consultant or project manager, Microsoft’s new Surface Hub 2S offers an impressive – though expensive – way to present to and work with clients and colleagues.

The 50-inch, 4K display functions as an electronic whiteboard and tele-conference system. That’s handy for presenting to people in the same room as you and to people located elsewhere.

It runs Skype for Business and Microsoft Teams, and has a 4K camera, an “occupancy sensor” and far-field microphones for picking up images and comments from around the room.

It also runs Office (Mobile) and integrates with other devices running Office 365 – so you can load your documents and presentations and work on them with other Office users. And it has Windows 10’s well-regarded pen-input features (though you’ll need to pay extra for the Surface Hub 2 Pen).

You’ll also be able to buy a battery pack and wheeled stand for the Surface Hub 2S, so you’ll be able to move it without worrying about access to power outlets.

The 50-inch version goes on sale in the US in June, and Microsoft plans to make it available in other locations “shortly thereafter”. It also plans to begin testing an 85-inch version in 2020.

The catch is the US$8,999.99 price for the 50-inch Surface Hub 2S. Businesses will need to do a lot of remote collaboration to justify that expense.

Still, the Surface Hub 2S and similar products – such as Cisco’s Webex Board – show that remote collaboration tools are continuing to get more sophisticated.

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