This site uses cookies. By continuing to browse the site you are agreeing to our use of cookies, you can also manage preferences.
Find More
Knowledge Center

Best ClickShare Alternatives for Huddle Rooms

BenQ North America
2019/09/09

Since its introduction, the Barco ClickShare platform has been one of the most popular wireless presentation systems on the market. But now that there are more than 40 competitors on the market, which one is right for your huddle rooms?

The ClickShare platform uses a transmitter button that loads the ClickShare app onto the computer to wirelessly connect to the receiver attached to the display, at 1080p resolution. Additionally, the system does not rely on corporate network connections to work and encrypts the wireless transmissions between the buttons and the receiver.

Based on the market data from Futuresource Consulting, we will look at the three most popular models sold worldwide that compete with the ClickShare CS-100, and how they stack up on these three questions:

  • How easy are they to setup and install?
  • How easy are they for employees and visitors to use?
  • What types of devices do they support?
  • What are the most popular ClickShare Alternatives?
    BenQ InstaShow WDC-10 - $999

    According to Futuresource, the BenQ InstaShow is the #2 selling wireless presentation system in Europe under $1000, second only to the Barco ClickShare. It uses a button architecture similar to the ClickShare, making it intuitive to connect and use. The BenQ is unique in that it is a hardware-only solution, so there is no application or networking required to set up and use the system. Both systems are highly secure and encrypt all the transmissions to ensure wireless information is not seen or recorded outside the room. The BenQ InstaShow WDC-10 comes with two buttons and a tabletop button holder, and is the winner of industrial design awards from iF and Good Design.

    AirTame2 - $499

    AirTame started as a crowdfunded startup offering inexpensive wireless presentation systems that uses a proprietary application to transmit the contents of a notebook or other device over a WiFi network to a small hub device connected to the display. Typically, WiFi hub systems use the existing corporate network, and relies on the performance of the network to determine video frame rates and manage the delay between the notebook and shared display. AirTame does not encrypt their transmissions over the network.

    Mersive Solstice Pod Gen 2i SGE - $799

    The Mersive Solstice platform uses a similar approach as the AirTame, where a proprietary app is loaded onto the notebook or other device, and transmits the presentation over the WiFi network to a receiver attached to the display. The Solstice Pod Gen 2i SGE can display four presenters on the screen at the same time, and can encrypt the transmission to keep it secure. Mersive also offers an annual subscription service for security and feature updates.

    How easy are they to set up and install?
    BenQ InstaShow Setup and Installation

    Because the InstaShow uses a button architecture similar to the ClickShare, it is easy to set up and use. The receiver can be powered by a display’s USB 3.0 port, and it does not require any corporate or other network access to operate. Simply connect an HDMI cable from the receiver to the display, then plug in a button to your notebook. Testing by the publication My Tech Decisions indicated it took only a few minutes to connect and use, and Projector Central said, ”InstaShow's combination of video quality with ease of set up and use is nothing short of amazing.”

    AirTame2 Setup and Installation

    The AirTame receiver is a small device that plugs into the HDMI port on the display, and like the InstaShow, can be powered by a USB port on the display. While the AirTame can create its own WiFi network, AirTame recommends that customers set up a new VLAN network. AirTame2 also has other specific networking and performance requirements from the enterprise network including:

  • Client Isolation” or “NAT Mode” must be disabled on the network
  • Multicast must be allowed on the network
  • An NTP server must be accessible for time synchronization
  • RSSI Performance: less than 60dbm
  • Stable Peak Hour Ping Time performance of less than 10ms.
  • Mersive Solstice Pod Gen 2i SGE Setup and Installation

    Like the AirTame2, the Mersive Solstice Pod connects to both the network and display. The Solstice Pod does not offer a USB power option, but can be run using a Power over Ethernet (PoE) system as an alternative to the AC adapter. To integrate the system into the corporate network, a 14 page Quick Start Guide outlines how to attach the Pod to the network, configure the user settings, and set up the system for secure collaboration.

    Since the Solstice Pod’s live video streaming frame rate is dependent on the host network, there are minimum performance and baseline security standards to enable smooth video at 30 frames per second:

  • 1.1MB of bandwidth times the number of simultaneous connected devices
  • Maximum packet latency of 35ms
  • Maximum network jitter of 1 standard deviation
  • Maximum packet loss of 0.20%
  • When Solstice is deployed on an existing network, the Solstice hosts and user devices require a wired or wireless network connection with a minimum bandwidth of 20 mbps. These details and other network implementation topics such as port requirements can be found in the Mersive Network Deployment Guide.

    How easy are they for employees and visitors to use?
    BenQ InstaShow WDC-10

    The InstaShow does not require any software applications or network connections for huddle room employees and visitors- they simply plug-in a button and start presenting in seconds. This simple approach is ideal for huddle rooms, saving both time and money, especially for time sensitive operations such as a law firm.

    For the IT staff, there is no software deployment to manage, and visitors with “locked down” computers can connect without having to run extra software or download apps. Its industry standard HDMI and USB-C connections plug into with notebooks, mobile phones, and tablets such as the iPad Pro, and even Chromebooks.

    AirTame2

    The AirTame2 requires visitors to both log onto the same network that the Airtame device is connected to, as well as download the Airtame application onto their device. Employees will need to download the application to their devices – or have the IT department deploy them via the network to use the system.

    For some visitors with “locked down” computers, they may not be able to download the AirTame application onto their devices for security reasons. Apple users can also use Airplay as an alternative. To stream video and audio content, the AirTame typically adds a one second delay between the computer and display, which can be highly distracting in a huddle room environment.

    Mersive Solstice Pod Gen 2i SGE

    For an employee or visitor to access a Solstice Pod, they must log onto the same network that is hosting the Solstice Pod, and also have the Mersive app running on their system. For visitors to obtain the app, they will either need to download the app from the website, or log in to the Solstice Pod on the network. Once connected to the unit, they will enter the IP address, which then enables them to install the app on their notebook.

    Like the AirTame2, this can present a challenge to certain visitors, since many organizations “lock down” their notebooks from running external third party software to protect from malware and may require IT support and approval for any application to be installed.

    What types of devices do they support?
    BenQ InstaShow WDC-10 Device Support

    The BenQ InstaShow uses standard HDMI or USB-C buttons that can connect to Windows, Mac, and even Chromebooks. But because it doesn’t require any software – and supports HDCP, it can also connect to hundreds of types of HDMI 1.4 devices such as document cameras, digital media players, and even gaming consoles. For laboratory and engineering work, the InstaShow will connect to development boards such as a Raspberry Pi, and industrial equipment that outputs standard HDMI signals, such as a spectrum analyzer.

    For mobile devices and tablets, the InstaShow WDC-10 connects using a button connection either via HDMI (via an adapter), or using the USB-C port with devices such as iPad Pro. However, with the latest InstaShow S, this more advanced system can support streaming from mobile devices via the InstaShare app loaded on the iOS or Android phones and tablets.

    The BenQ Instashow can connect to hundreds of HDMI and USB-C devices, including a digital microscope, PS4, Raspberry Pi developement board, and even an iPad Pro.

    AirTame2 Device Support

    The AirTame application must be running on the presenters’ device in order to connect to the AirTame2 receiver. AirTame offers applications for Windows, Mac OS, Chromebook, and Linux computers, as well as iOS and Android mobile devices. Because the application requires resources from the device, certain features may be limited on different devices, such as a Chromebook that doesn’t have a hardware encoding chip, or is running an ARM processor.

    There is currently no support for devices such as Blu-Ray players or document cameras.

    Mersive Solstice Pod Gen 2i SGE Device Support

    Because the Mersive Solstice Pod requires a proprietary application running on the computer to connect to the receiver, the system will only support Windows and Mac computers, as well as Android and iOS mobile devices. There is no Chromebook support, and only the more expensive models have wired HDMI input ports – but do not support HDCP, which is required for most media players, TV boxes, and other HDMI devices that play copy protected media.

    Comparison Table

    So which system is right for your huddle room? As with any technology decision, there are many factors to consider, but the guide below breaks down some of the key features many people are looking for in a wireless collaboration solution for their huddle rooms.

     

    Barco ClickShare CS-100

    BenQ InstaShow WDC-10

    AirTame2

    Mersive Solstice Pod Gen2i SGE
     
    Connection Type

    Barco ClickShare CS-100

    Button and App

    BenQ InstaShow WDC-10

    Button Only

    AirTame2

    WiFi and App

    Mersive Solstice Pod Gen2i SGE

    WiFi and App

     
    Security

    Barco ClickShare CS-100

    Encrypted Transmissions

    BenQ InstaShow WDC-10

    Encrypted Transmissions

    AirTame2

    No Encryption

    Mersive Solstice Pod Gen2i SGE

    Configurable Encryption

     
    Number of Buttons Included

    Barco ClickShare CS-100

    1

    BenQ InstaShow WDC-10

    2 – with table top button holder

    AirTame2

    N/A

    Mersive Solstice Pod Gen2i SGE

    N/A

     
    Maximum Number of Presenters

    Barco ClickShare CS-100

    8

    BenQ InstaShow WDC-10

    16

    AirTame2

    N/A

    Mersive Solstice Pod Gen2i SGE

    4

     
    Setup and Installation

    Barco ClickShare CS-100

    Easy

    BenQ InstaShow WDC-10

    Easy

    AirTame2

    Network setup and configuration

    Mersive Solstice Pod Gen2i SGE

    Network setup and configuration

     
    Employee / Visitor Use

    Barco ClickShare CS-100

    Requires app to run on device

    BenQ InstaShow WDC-10

    Plug and Play – no software needed

    AirTame2

    Require network login and app to run on device

    Mersive Solstice Pod Gen2i SGE

    Require network login and app to run on device

     
    Notebook Device Support

    Barco ClickShare CS-100

    Windows, Mac

    BenQ InstaShow WDC-10

    Windows, Mac, Chromebooks

    AirTame2

    Windows, Mac, Chromebooks

    Mersive Solstice Pod Gen2i SGE

    Windows, Mac

     
    Mobile Device Support

    Barco ClickShare CS-100

    iOS and Android via App

    BenQ InstaShow WDC-10

    Phones and Tablets with USB-C and HDMI out

    AirTame2

    iOS and Android via App

    Mersive Solstice Pod Gen2i SGE

    iOS and Android via App

     
    Other Devices

    Barco ClickShare CS-100

    None

     

    BenQ InstaShow WDC-10

    Any HDMI 1.4 device such as Blu-ray, Document cameras, TV boxes, Raspberry Pi

    AirTame2

    Linux Devices

    Mersive Solstice Pod Gen2i SGE

    None

     

    What is the best ClickShare alternative available today?

    The BenQ InstaShow has become one of the top selling ClickShare alternatives because it keeps the simple and intuitive button architecture that ClickShare uses, while eliminating the hassles of downloading applications and having to connect to a network in order to present. For huddle rooms and shared workspaces, the plug and play approach of the InstaShow keeps your meeting focused on the topic – without having to learn new apps or log in to a different network.

    To learn more about the InstaShow, and how companies like Toyota have standardized on the platform to save precious meeting time, click here.

    TOP