Google’s 3D video conferencing platform, Project Starline, is coming in 2025 with help from HP

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In 2021, Google kicked off work on Project Starline, a corporate-focused teleconferencing platform that uses 3D imaging, cameras and a custom-designed screen to let people converse with someone as if they were in the same room — more or less.

Now, after years of testing and private technical previews, Google’s bringing Starline to customers in partnership with HP.

In a blog post published ahead of Google I/O, Google said that it’ll collaborate with HP to start commercializing Starline sometime in 2025. Google’s also working to integrate Starline with popular videoconferencing services like Zoom and Google Meet, the company says.

“This marks a significant step towards a world where connection and collaboration are possible no matter where you are,” Andrew Narkter, general manager of Project Starline, said in a statement. “We’ll share more details later this year.”

Project Starline - 3d video conferencing - Google IO 2021
Project Starline is Google’s attempt to make teleconferences a more enjoyable experience.

As my colleague Brian Heater wrote about his hands-on experience last year, Starline is still very much a virtual experience — but can probably trick your brain into believing otherwise. The question is, with many workplaces transitioning to fully in-office setups post-pandemic, will there be much demand for Starline, which initially seemed aimed mainly at hybrid offices that frequently conference with remote workers?

According to a survey from Resume Builder, 90% of companies with office space will have returned to the office by 2024. Despite the fact that research has failed to draw definitive conclusions about remote workers’ productivity, the perception among many in senior management — especially in tech — is that work-from-home is something of a failed experiment.

But perhaps some customers will be able to justify Starline for office-to-office virtual conferences alone. Indeed, Google last year said that WeWork, T-Mobile and Salesforce were testing prototype version of the tech.

Read more about Google I/O 2024 on TechCrunch



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