Product News | November 2, 2020

Charge Mobile Devices with Swivl Updates

We have spent this summer and fall listening and observing as you've adapted your schools to a variety of learning models. In our effort to stay up-to-date with the evolving hybrid landscape, and in response to your feedback, we have implemented an update to Swivl that includes mobile charging. We are calling this update the CX-Series to reflect this feature addition. It retains the compatibility with a multitude of iOS and Android devices, and introduces mobile device charging and adaptive LED markers. If you are a current C-Series user, we also have a solution for you - a new cable accessory called Boost. It will provide you the same mobile device charging capability and will be provided free of charge to your school. Read on for more details. 

Mobile Device Charging

For a long time, traditional recording in the classroom survived without mobile device charging because typically teachers recorded shorter video segments for observational purposes, and had time to charge their tablet or mobile phone in between sessions. And while teachers can keep their robots plugged in even today, once synchronous learning with live streaming became the new norm, it became obvious to us that we needed to rapidly adapt to allow the teacher’s mobile device to maintain its charge as well. 

Now, Swivl has got you and your mobile devices’ battery life covered. For iOS mobile devices with a lightning connector, or iOS and Android* mobile devices with a Type-C connector, your mobile device will be able to communicate with the Swivl robot and charge at the very same time. If you are a C-Series user, our engineers have also come up with a solution to enable mobile device charging and data transfer with our new custom Boost charging cable. 

Gone are the days of switching out the iPad or tablet for a phone, or simply sacrificing your Swivl tracking and microphone for the sake of enabling a midday charge for your mobile device. We know this will help you stay connected to students, and we’re glad to bring this enhancement into your hybrid learning environment.

C-Series users: we know you’ve been waiting for this improvement. We are giving away Boost cables - charging accessories we've created specifically for you - completely free of charge. Simply place an order here to request as many Boost cables as you need.

*Some Android devices’ Type C ports do not support charging and USB host mode at the same time (the latter is necessary to communicate with Swivl) The Lenovo M10 Tablet is one such device. Please check with your manufacturer to determine if your device’s Type C port supports this feature.

Marker LED Improvements

CX Robot-5 LED Markers

CX-Series markers also feature multicolor LEDs in place of marker stickers to easily adapt markers from unit to unit without needing to assign a new color sticker every time. The robot will automatically assign an LED color to markers each time they are paired with a new device, saving time and the hassle of assigning a new color sticker. 

Additionally, the Primary marker - arguably the most important marker in a session, as this is the one tracked by default - will always appear with a white LED (no color) to help keep it distinguishable from other markers. And any time you need to re-assign a Secondary marker and make it Primary, we automatically remove any other associated color so it’s always obvious which marker is being tracked. 

It's worth noting that markers will be compatible across both generations, C-Series and CX-Series, so you’re able to put your existing markers to  use even with the newer robots. The robot will intelligently assign colors to avoid duplication when combining C-Series and CX-Series markers.

Continuous Improvement

We continue to push the boundaries of our hardware and software to develop solutions for your evolving classroom. From expanding live streaming capabilities to supporting a wide range of streaming apps and audio setup methods, to integrating with services like Zoom to offer better video management and collaboration, the Swivl ecosystem is your trusted partner for hybrid learning and video professional development. 

While mobile device charging brings huge advantages to our products overall, our hardware engineers have only begun to scratch the surface of tapping into some immense capabilities for Swivl. Our passion for learning  and challenge pushes us to constantly change our products to meet the needs of the modern, tech-forward classroom. Keep an eye on the horizon for more intelligent tracking, automatic power-saving features, and teacher/student communication tools. We hope you plan for the future of your school with Swivl today.