Will the whiteboard ever go away in favor of a giant touchscreen display like the Google Jamboard or the Microsoft Surface Hub? We don’t know. What we do know is, companies will keep trying. The Samsung Flip is the latest attempt at the category, combining the functions of a whiteboard and a flip chart into a single digital display.
Similar to previous efforts from Google and Microsoft, the device can serve as a blank whiteboard where users can scribble down notes, lists, and other points during a meeting. From the looks of things, it works well enough for those purposes that it can serve as a permanent whiteboard replacement.
The Samsung Flip is a 55-inch display panel with 4K resolution, so you can use it to watch UHD videos in the boardroom when the bosses are out of the office. Of course, that won’t be its main function. In whiteboard mode, up to four people can write on the board at the same time, either by using the included stylus marker or a person’s finger. Since it’s digital, there’s no need to clear the board with an eraser, since you can remove all the contents of the board with a simple swipe. Once a meeting is wrapped up, the entire whiteboard contents can be saved to a central database, as well as stored to an external drive for personal use.
The device, by the way, can hold up to 20 pages of whiteboard notes at a time, which you can stroll through like a multi-page document using simple gestures. There’s even a built-in search function that can find a specific note and bring up that whiteboard page immediately, so you can return to a previous point without having to sift through 20 pages of scribbles.
The Samsung Flip comes with Wi-Fi for jumping onto your network, allowing it to be accessed from other devices. That means, users can see everything on the screen from a PC, smartphone, or tablet, so a team member can see how the meeting goes right from their home. Samsung claims it can perform that without lag or reduction in visual quality, so the experience should be great for folks inside the meeting. We’re not sure if remote users can write on the whiteboard, though, as it’s not made clear in the press release, although they can import content from their machines for showing in the display.
It comes with a rolling stand that allows you to easily move the whiteboard from one conference room to another, complete with a mount that allows you to use it in both landscape and portrait modes. That way, you can use it in landscape like a traditional whiteboard, all while quickly switching to portrait for displaying diagrams like a flip chart. The stand is height-adjustable, too, so you can raise or lower it to whatever position works best for the people in the meeting.
No pricing or release date have been announced for the Samsung Flip, but it’s expected to launch later in the year.