We sat down with Jonas Gyalokay, CEO and Co-Founder of Airtame Inc to learn more about the possibilities of this wireless HDMI technology, and discuss how wireless collaboration is empowering students and educators to create meaningful connections.
Could you tell us more about Airtame and how the technology works?
Airtame is a small device that you plug into a TV screen or projector. Connect it to your network and anyone will be able to stream their screen to the device, using the free Airtame app or AirPlay if on an Apple device. Simple as that!
If you go deeper into the technological aspect, Airtame is a mix of custom designed hardware powered by intelligent firmware and working together with our cross-platform applications for Windows, Mac, Linux, Chromebook, iOS and Android. It’s all tied together by WiFi and our proprietary streaming protocol. As the icing on the cake we’ve also developed a cloud based management system, to make it easy to deploy, maintain and support larger Airtame roll-outs.
Could you explain the process of how you work within Education?
We love to see how Airtame has created different value for myriad organizations within the Education sector. Our approach is to be close to our customer. We invest a lot of resources in talking directly to our users, and reselling partners that are often the people-in-the-middle.
For school districts in the US and schools in Europe we’ve seen that Airtame helps break down the barrier between the teacher and students. Giving the students access to using the screen or projector from anywhere in the room opens up a new dynamic in the two-way communication. The fact that a student can quickly take over the display and show their solution allows for a more collaborative learning experience. Both students and educators have mentioned to us that Airtame has helped “speed up the learning” and make sure that classes are in better flow. This has manifested both with US School districts like Desert Sands School District in California. The IT admins there have placed Airtame in the multi-screen setup they have in each classroom.
If we look at higher education, Hult International Business School use Airtame for digital signage and for collaborating in the many huddle spaces the university has. When no one is actively using the display, they are showing a Google Slideshow with upcoming events, exams and other relevant information, but with two clicks on their laptops the students can take over the screen in any of the huddle rooms and collaborate on theirs assignments. Hult first rolled out Airtame in their campus in central London, but they’ve now expanded across their campuses in the US, Dubai and the rest of the UK.
Last but not least, IT admins have expressed that managing Airtame devices is a breeze. They can provide additional functionality to their users, and free-up time and money normally spent on fixing or replacing cables. Our cloud management service allows IT admins to troubleshoot connection issues directly from their office, or even off-site.
In your experience, how has the requirements of AV users changed in recent years?
As I see it, there are a few different trends going on at the moment. First of all users are becoming more demanding and are expecting to see the functionality they use at home available in the school or office environment. They’re expecting to be able to share and show stuff “on-demand” to any screen and from any device. Combined with BYOD this puts a lot of pressure on the AV and IT teams to find solutions that are cross-platform, simple to use and fitted for a complex network setup, like the one you have in a larger organization.
Another trend is that many schools want to “do it themselves”, meaning that rolling out a new solution, shouldn’t require custom cabling and advanced programming of equipment. Administrators are expecting more and more that AV equipment works out of the box and that they can quickly configure it themselves. Lastly they’re of course always trying to save cost, so the last bigger trend would probably be that IT teams are trying to find solutions that can solve multiple use-cases at the same time.
These are some of the trends we’re trying to accelerate, by providing something that is so simple to set up that anyone can do it. It’s as simple to use and build for a complex network environment as it is for an easy one; and can double as a customizable digital signage tool as well.
How do you see Airtame growing and developing in the future?
Airtame will continue to grow and improve the product and the experience. It’s all centered on helping organizations flow well through wireless, inclusive, easy to use and affordable technology. Airtame’s aim is to power all professional displays and make them ridiculously easy to access and interact with. It’s not for everyone, so don’t expect us to punch out an Airtame product for home use.
We will continue to work with current and future users and customers to develop more functionalities and improve the user experience. We want to make sure we can solve the needs that users have around their organizations screens. We aren’t covering all bases yet, but we’re expanding within both the screen-sharing and signage side of things.
As a company we will continue the current trajectory and become a bigger team of Airtamers to support, engage and develop new functionality to make sure we can all head towards a wireless future. Hopefully one where technology just works and you can easily get into flow in your classroom or office.
To find out more about Airtame, their latest technology and how it could assist you, feel free to visit their website. www.airtame.com