Without any products on the streets so to speak, Microsoft is betting big on the viability of the Surface Hub. The new large screen pen and touch device is the result of Microsoft’s continued vision of enhancing productivity among individuals and groups.
However, without the software and applications, the versatile screen amounts to little more than an expensive touch screen. Microsoft is now in the process of developing business productivity and collaboration software to highlight the Surface Hub’s multi-purpose utility. While developing enterprise level applications are well within Microsoft’s wheel-house, the company is hoping the Surface Hub can see expanded use outside of the business world.
Microsoft is now putting out a request for Academic Research proposals for other applications that can apply to the Surface Hub. Microsoft’s goal in this quest is to receive projects that expand potential applications of the Surface Hub across various workspaces that can include education and medical purposes. According to the Surface Hub team, “We’re looking for research proposals that will investigate new ways that Microsoft Surface Hub can contribute to work, learning, communication and collaboration.”
Microsoft highlights some specific areas of interest the Surface Hub team are leaning towards in their discovery. The teams believes there is potential in:
- Data visualization – Example: using touch-enabled tools to manipulate data
- Evolution of pedagogy in STEM, medical, and design education – Example: using Skype-enabled apps for education collaboration (e.g., interactive meetings for medical training)
- Future of communication and distributed collaboration – Examples: remote training and support, and virtual conferences (e.g., use of multiple platforms and a variety of devices toward a common goal)
- Human-computer interaction – Examples: human-computer interaction around pen+touch, large displays, and second screen scenarios
- Solving difficult problems and contributing new insights that are specific to the applicant’s field
This particular research request happens to be anchored by a variety of awards as well the potential of 10 proposal winners receiving up to $25,000 and one 55” or 84” Surface Hub for their efforts. The Surface Hub team details offer further details on the winnings, but it seems obvious the Surface Hub and financial prizes are meant to further contestants research into collaborative projects.
Visit the Research Proposal page for further details, and stay tuned to WinBeta for more on the Surface Hub.