They'll get a pre-assembled, customized multi-touch, digital-ink-enabled collaboration system running a variant of Windows 10. Both Surface Hub models include custom-designed versions of OneNote, Skype for Business and Microsoft's Office apps. They also will be able to run Universal Windows apps available from the unified Windows Store. Two pens (but no pen loops -- sorry, pen loop fans) and a wireless keyboard will be part of the system out of the box, as well.
The Surface Hub can detect 100 points of multi-touch and up to three simultaneous pen inputs. It has dual 1080p front-facing video cameras and a four-microphone array, as well as built in Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.0, NFC and a variety of ports. The devices are also Miracast-enabled. Microsoft-manufactured stands for the devices -- a rolling model and another fixed-place, height-adjustable one -- will be available for purchase separately and timed to roll out with the Hubs.
Microsoft's pitch is that Surface Hubs cost only about half of what customers typically spend on the technology and AV systems that users plan to shell out when setting up comparable conferencing systems.
Microsoft plans to sell Surface Hub primarily through designated reseller partners. But the company also will offer the devices direct to customers, and make them available in its Microsoft Stores.
Microsoft is manufacturing the Surface Hubs in Wilsonville, Ore. The 24 markets where the product will be available this year are: U.S., Canada, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Denmark, France, Finland, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Portugal, Qatar, Singapore, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, UAE and U.K.