Poly’s New $815 Monitor Has a Built-In Webcam, Microphone, and Ring Light

A person on a video call using a monitor with a built-in webcam, ring light, and microphone.
Poly

With more people working from home, video calls are the new norm. You could buy a new monitor, webcam, microphone, speakers, and ring light, but Poly wants to cover all that in one package. The Poly Personal Meeting Display includes everything you need for the next Zoom call. And if you just need a new webcam, Poly has that covered too.

Poly isn’t new to the webcam game, and if you work in an office setting, you may have already used its products. Formerly known as Polycom before a buyout, the company has long made conference call products and the phones you’re used to seeing in workplaces. After a Plantronics buyout, the focus on webcams only seemed to increase, though it continues to support office settings.

The new $815 Poly Studio P21 Personal Meeting Display marries those two focuses. At first glance, it looks similar to a standard monitor, though it lacks the widescreen sensibilities of most new monitors. But look closer, and you’ll find a built-in webcam with a privacy shutter, microphone, and a pair of ambient lights on its left and right side to keep your face well lit. It even includes stereo speakers. Theoretically, out of the box, you’re ready to go for any virtual call.

Unfortunately, Poly didn’t specify the resolution or panel type for the monitor—only that it’s an Enterprise-Grade display. Most of its advertising suggests you use it as a second monitor, so chances are it won’t hold a candle to a gaming monitor. But that’s fine; this is clearly for work use in an office setting where you’re more likely to look at an Excel spreadsheet than play Cyberpunk 2077.

A large webcam bar on top of a monitor.
Poly

And if you already have all the monitors you need, Poly has two new webcam options for your consideration. The $599 P15 Personal Video Bar is a 4K webcam with a built-in microphone and speaker. You can hook it up and go straight to virtual calls. This one is better suited to a conference room setting or other setups where you might move around. The camera can follow you and keep you in frame, which isn’t all that useful if you’re just sitting at your desk.

A man on a video call using a small white webcam.
Poly

For something like that, look to the $129 Poly Studio P5 webcam. It’s a 1080p camera with a 4X digital zoom option. Digital zoom will always come with fuzziness, so you probably shouldn’t rely on it heavily. But the P5 has a built-in USB Type-A connector so that you can plug the dongle for a wireless headset receiver directly into the camera. That’ll net your microphone and speaker capabilities without taking up precious USB spots on your desktop or laptop. 

Poly says all three products will release in April.

Josh Hendrickson Josh Hendrickson
Josh Hendrickson has worked in IT for nearly a decade, including four years spent repairing and servicing computers for Microsoft. He’s also a smarthome enthusiast who built his own smart mirror with just a frame, some electronics, a Raspberry Pi, and open-source code. Read Full Bio »

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