The business world is currently finding out how to deal with the krona virus crisis, with many offices choosing to work remotely for at least the next few weeks as a security measure. Predictably, this has thrown software for remote meetings back into the limelight, especially extended reality solutions.
And although we have covered many of the highest AR solutions for remote meeting, the room is constantly evolving and introducing new alternatives, the latest being the Whiteboard for Magic Leap 1.
Released earlier this month in the Magic Leap World app store and Whiteboard were developed by Nomtek, the same company behind the incredibly polished private Magic Leap app for HyperloopTT, the Elon Musk-inspired transport system.
Unlike remote control meeting apps such as Spatial or Avatar Chat, Whiteboard is not focused on deep multimedia interactions, instead the app is a dead-easy way to replicate the traditional whiteboard experience in AR.
When the app is launched, the user presents a large-sized virtual whiteboard (complete with metal frames and legs) along with a series of colored markers and a rubber eraser. But a whiteboard is only really useful if you can show off your work, so the option to invite gives additional Magic Leap-used viewers visual access via the Lumin OS "Cast" feature is handy.
When it comes to using the app, the interaction is refreshingly basic, allowing the user to keep the control unit as cursor, with the ability to switch from different marker colors to eraser by simply dipping the controller into the desired virtual option, similar to a paint palette.
Nomtek's technical documentation mentions the ability to save multiple whiteboards, but that feature seems not yet available (we have asked the developers for more information about this feature, but have not yet received further information).
One particularly useful feature of the app is the ability to create multiple whiteboards for simultaneous use. I was able to create four massive whiteboards in my space, each with their own fonts and constantly saved selection color choices, which allowed me to move between whiteboards seamlessly documenting notes on each separately. This is where the Lumin OS "Follow" feature becomes quite powerful as it allows you to force a whiteboard to follow as you go against another whiteboard.
The only major limitation I can discern in Whiteboard so far is the inability to let Remote users join and add their own colored cursor notations to your whiteboard. The other issue is the inability to save your whiteboarding. Until this feature is added, one solution would be to simply record your session with the built-in recording feature on Magic Leap 1. This method allows you to easily record and share videos of your whiteboard work via YouTube and Twitter (or privately
Obviously, the biggest hurdle here is that everyone in the remote viewing session for a whiteboard session needs a magical leap 1. Alternatively, remote conference participants can view and interact in remote AR meetings from an app like Spatial a desktop computer without the need for a HoloLens or Magic Leap unit.
Keep in mind, however, that unlike the more feature-rich Spatial, Whiteboard is completely free, so if you already have Magic Leap 1, you suddenly have a powerful remote meeting tool at your fingertips at no extra cost.