Gone are the days where you need clunky equipment to set up a proper conference room that could potentially that cost tens of thousands of dollars. With the advancement in projection technology, a palm-size projector like The Cube or UO Smart Beam Laser Projector, along with a smartphone, could be the answer to your need for visual presentations and today, Pioneer and Onkyo U.S.A. Corporation announced yet another revolution in boardroom conferencing: a smart, pocket-size Lightning-powered conference speaker called Rayz Rally.
Never mind the somehow not-so-apt product name because convenience here is the key. As the product name implies, Rayz Rally plugs right into your Lightning connector-equipped iOS device and effectively turning it into a conference speakerphone that is loud enough to fill a boardroom. With a dedicated iOS app and leveraging on Apple’s newest Lightning audio technology, powered by Avnera Corporation’s LightX platform, Rayz Rally promised to deliver “a surprising level of audio volume and call clarity,” which Onkyo and Pioneer CEO, Munenori Otsuki claims to be at “a level typically experienced from larger conference phone systems.”
And it does so in a form factor that slips right into the pocket. Best of all, it has no battery to bother with. Rally is exclusively powered by your iPhone and with Avnera’s LightX platform, it ensures the speaker draws minimum power. And this little guy also touts simplicity; all you have to do is plug it to the Lightning port of your device, initiate the call and it (the call) will be automatically piped through to Rally’s powerful speaker, Onkyo and Pioneer said. As a boon, its application is not limited to iPhone. Rally can also be used for Internet calls on iPad, iPod Touch, and even on Mac and PC if used with a standard Lightning to USB cable.
Rally also boasts a passthrough Lightning port that enables you to charge your iPhone, iPad, or iPod Touch while it is in use. And oh, it can also double as a music speaker too and this is where it is smart at. It will be able to recognize whether it is being used as a conference speaker or music playback, and optimized the audio accordingly. In addition, it has a single button that is smart too, allowing one button for mute/unmute calls, or play/pause music based on what it is being use at the moment. The onboard software is updatable automatically, thus you can be sure you’d be getting new features and benefits as and when they are available.
The Pioneer & Onkyo Smart Pocket-size Lightning-powered Conference Speaker is available now at Apple online store as well as Apple brick-and-mortar stores worldwide, priced at $99.95 a pop. A pretty modest sum I must say, for something that traditionally cost hundreds, if not thousands of dollars and the most brilliant aspect is, your conference can be conducted anywhere, free from the constraints of bolted down equipment.
Images: Pioneer & Onkyo U.S.A.