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The Role of Audio Ecosystems in Hybrid Meeting Rooms

Hybrid meetings are here to stay. There is no arguing about it. Even before the world-changing pandemic, offices saw a growing demand for employees to work from home. According to a McKinsey survey, employees are now going to the office 30 percent less than during the pandemic
February, 13 2024 |
Stem Ecosystem and Airtame Hub in meeting room

Hi there, Benjamin from Airtame here. We are grateful to be invited to contribute our expertise in hybrid meetings to the Shure blog. At Airtame, we offer an all-in-one platform for screens with wireless screen sharing, digital signage, and hybrid conferencing capabilities. We pride ourselves on making user-friendly and beautiful solutions for good hybrid meetings, which require extensive knowledge of audio and video peripherals. 


Hybrid meetings are here to stay. There is no arguing about it. Even before the world-changing pandemic, offices saw a growing demand for employees to work from home. According to a McKinsey survey, employees are now going to the office 30 percent less than during the pandemic [Empty spaces & hybrid places, July 2023]. 

Combined with fully remote employees and the occasional sales meeting with third parties from anywhere in the world, we all needed to have Microsoft Teams, Google Meet, Zoom, and Webex ready to go on our work laptops. Usually, a one-on-one call works pretty well with both parties wearing a headset and using the built-in webcam on their laptop.

However, as soon as a hybrid meeting is transported into a meeting room, especially with multiple people in the room, something happens. The host of the meeting suddenly has to become an IT expert and manage cables, device settings, and meeting settings.

For any meeting host, using user-friendly interfaces and high-quality devices not only saves money but also makes the meeting itself more efficient. At Airtame we have developed the perfect solution with support for all 4 major conferencing services, and support for a wide range of video peripherals. Airtame Hybrid is a plan purpose-built for ease of use and getting meetings started on time.

However, even with Airtame Hybrid being the backbone of a smoother meeting experience, the audio ecosystem still plays a key factor in ensuring a smooth and efficient meeting in beautiful surroundings. This also shows why our partnership with Shure is a perfect match, with their amazing Stem audio ecosystem.

Can Everyone Hear Me??

So what is the benefit of an audio ecosystem like Shure’s Stem Ecosystem in a meeting room for hybrid meetings? Well, the first part of the answer is pretty simple: to have clear audio. We know how successful hybrid meetings require clear and crisp audio to ensure all remote participants can follow along during a presentation. Brief pauses in the video feed might not impact communication much, but even slight interruptions or delays can harm the overall communication flow in a meeting. 

Low-quality audio equipment only gets worse when it has to be compressed to be transmitted in real time over the internet, so having precise microphones is key. Combined with software features, like noise and echo cancellation, the audio is improved before being transmitted to the remote participants. 

The same logic also applies to the speaker system, which can improve even low-quality remote microphones like cheap headsets, and can make the audio pleasant and with enough depth to hear remote participants. Running the entire meeting on a wired network like with our Airtame Hub also ensures low latency, which is key to avoiding people interrupting each other or awkward pauses.

The Meeting Room of the Future

An important aspect of a complete audio ecosystem is the aesthetics of the meeting room. Ceiling and wall-mounted audio equipment provide a clean feel with less visible cables and clutter on the desk. This not only leaves more room for the participants to work but also creates a better aesthetic, even smaller meetings. 

The presentation says a lot about a company. Having a beautiful and neat meeting room, for external calls with vendors or potential customers, or even when having remote job interviews, first impressions and virtual impressions matter. 

This is something we prioritize at Airtame, where the Danish design of our Airtame Hub really shines. No matter if the Airtame Hub is wall-mounted to peek out from behind a TV or hidden away completely, it can be installed with no visible cables, while ensuring a strong wireless connection to the laptop and an aesthetic look.

Breaking Down Proximity Bias

Any company with fully remote employees can attest to proximity bias, and how hard it is to combat. It will always seem easier for an employee to ask a person sitting next to them in the office for help rather than someone online. 

This proximity bias also translates to hybrid meetings, where talking directly to the local participants in the meeting room seems easier and more natural compared to the remote participants. Lowering latency in hybrid calls and having clear audio communications encourages everyone on the call to speak, improving employee communication and opening the doors for more nuanced conversations. 

Allowing everyone in the call to share, also expands into our so-called Share to call feature, which allows everyone in the meeting room to share their screen into the call without having to log into the call. Not more audio feedback loops and waiting minutes for a person to show something from their screen.

Consistent Meeting Rooms

A good audio ecosystem has a final benefit worth mentioning. With an audio ecosystem, you can mix-and-match various devices that may be useful in rooms of different sizes. This makes it possible to scale your audio solution to fit all of your meeting rooms, while still not buying more hardware than needed for each room.

This is not only economical but provides the same meeting experience no matter which room you are in or the size of your meeting. By adjusting the size and number of speakers and microphones, the specific audio setup will always be good enough for clear communication without being unnecessarily expensive or taking up too much space.

This matches perfectly with the Airtime Hybrid plan, which always includes the same Airtame Hub, however by using different sets of peripheral devices, it can fully adjust to different room sizes. All this, while still providing the same method and interface of starting a call, no matter if in a smaller huddle room or a big conference room.

If you found this blog post ready, feel free to check out our website and learn more about what we at Airtame are doing for meeting rooms with Shure, and how you can try it out yourself.

Abby Kaplan
Abby Kaplan is the Vice President of Global Sales, Retail at Shure.