How to Make the Most of Wireless Meeting Rooms

By: Shaun Parker

If you are travelling half way across England for a crucial meeting, the last thing you want is to forget an important document or be dependent on a last-minute email.

The availability of wireless local area technology since the late 1990s combined with increased demand for access to the internet has encouraged the latest generation of conference organisers to create purpose-built meeting rooms equipped with the latest wireless technology.

The idea behind wireless meeting rooms is to create environments where delegates are able to exchange documents with one another, connect to speakers and projectors, or print without the need for wires, and be able to surf or access email as required. While blue-tooth offers a short-range, low-power way to access other devices, wireless technology offers the advantages of speed and convenience.

Wireless also beats mobile phone technology hands down in speed of access to the internet and savings on downloading large amounts of data, and is much more straightforward than connecting to dial up or to broadband via Ethernet cables.

People using wireless meeting rooms simply need a wireless enabled laptop, Smartphone or PDA, or suitable add-on card. While most people wouldn't be separated from their laptops for love or money, conference facilities may also offer extra laptops, meaning you simply need to carry any relevant documents or presentations on a memory stick or disk.

Conference calls can also be wireless

Audio facilities, such as those required for conference calls, can also benefit from wireless technology. If a group of people are attempting to communicate via a phone in the centre of a room, background noise caused by papers shuffling and people speaking can be extremely distracting: lapel sized, wireless microphones put an end to this.

The existence of wireless meeting rooms reflects a growing demand by businesses for comfort and convenience in conference, training and meeting room facilities, rather than seeking prestigious, high-end conference facilities in plush hotels.

Why wireless makes sense

For some companies keen to avoid the overheads of hiring office space in central locations, who've run out of space or who work mainly from home, office space available on an hourly-basis offers a truly wireless meeting room environment without the need to ever set up a computer network.

These sorts of enterprise benefit from the ability to hire a room at short notice. At the moment, the majority of these conference facilities are in large, technically-savvy cities at the centre of transport routes, but as more business demand these sorts of facilities, we are likely to see them spread.

The future of meeting rooms

The future almost certainly offers wireless video conferencing, wireless broadband mobile phones or Smartphones. In the mean time, perhaps we'll see a trend for conference rooms that make the most of the fun side of wireless technology such as the opportunity for shared gaming, home cinema and sharing music.

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