The Google Jamboard may not be newest technology to hit the market, officially announced in late 2016, but the 55″ 4K touchscreen still delivers a wonderfully playful experience in 2019. To start, the hardware “feels very Google” (well organized cables, stylish design, solid materials) and while I was a bit concerned about the two giant boxes the device shipped in, I had the entire system connected an running a software update in no time (granted, with the help of another person when connecting the display). The device is essentially a monitor/computer combo with a wide range of features.
The best way to describe the interaction is fun.
- The hardware is heavily rubberized and should withstand any normal office environment (no small feat)
- It works seamlessly in the Google ecosystem (Google Drive, YouTube, etc.)
- Working in a synchronous and asynchronous way, for large projects, is a breeze.
- The handwriting recognition is amazing!
- The touch screen is of a very high quality, with 16 points of touch and a 60Hz refresh rate
- It’s cross platform (Windows, Mac, Linux, etc. and it just works)
- At $4,999 (not including the $1,349 stand), it’s kinda expensive, not to mention the annual management and support fee of $600. [all MSRP]
- The device works wonderfully in the Google ecosystem, but doesn’t necessarily work well with other environments (WebEx, Zoom, etc.). If you aren’t a Google shop… this may not be for you.
- Like any technology, there is a learning curve… even for those inside of Google’s ecosystem on a regular basis.
So, what do I think?
If I worked in a smaller office environment (say 20-100 employees) and we were 100% a Google House (Gmail, Google Docs, YouTube, etc.) I wouldn’t hesitate recommending this device. But, if you living in a mixed unified communications world, it’s a more difficult decision, especially with the likes of Microsoft and Zoom floating around.