We are entering a new era of flexible education, students of all ages have embraced e-learning. They have several expectations when joining a remote class. First and foremost, teachers must provide a seamless hybrid lesson experience free from technical hitches. Images and video must be 4K with crystal clear images from visualisers in order to replicate the classroom experience. The sound quality must be as clear as if they were in the same room as the teacher, with no background noise or interruptions. These details above must be neatly integrated with engaging software to create an interactive learning experience that truly benefits learners.

Whatever the purpose or subject of your remote educational broadcast, teachers today have a shared set of needs when it comes to e-learning equipment. No one wants to juggle bulky equipment or fiddle around connecting bundles of wires. Flexibility, portability and ease of setting up equipment are de rigueur: unfold, plug and stream.

There should be no technical glitches in the running of a remote class, so the ability to switch between live streaming camera and visualiser quickly as well as auto-flip to stop upside-down images is a life saver for teachers. For hybrid classes, where some students are in the physical classroom and others are attending remotely, an AI noise reduction and echo cancellation microphone ensures high sound quality. Finally, integration of software services creates a seamless e-learning experience.

AVer’s innovative all-in-one camera offers true flexibility. To discover more about its design, function and application, we interviewed Project Manager Sven Chuang. Here’s what he had to tell us:

What inspired AVer to design the A30 All-Purpose Camera?


"At the beginning, we were thinking about new educational tools that could be conveniently used by teachers as a replacement for traditional physical visualizers. Since the pandemic, hybrid/distance learning is now commonplace, so teachers need a more convenient and portable tool to capture teaching materials and simultaneously video chat with students.

In the past, teachers had to bring at least three devices with them into the classroom, typically a laptop, microphone and speaker. Built in laptop speakers and microphones were not powerful enough for teaching a whole class, and teachers would have to fiddle with multiple connections and volume controls. Now, teachers can concentrate on teaching without worrying about adjusting multiple settings. We aim to provide teachers with practical solutions, without complications, enabling them to simply plug and teach. This integrated system provides the ultimate experience of hybrid/mobile teaching.

AVer is the first in the industry to feature a visualizer, microphone, and speaker in one device. AI image rotation also ensures that the teacher is always seen in the correct direction. Finally, teachers can connect to another USB camera for picture-in-picture images, providing students with the ability to see the teacher's gestures and expressions as well as the teaching materials."

Can you tell us about the challenges encountered during the design of the AVer A30 All-Purpose Camera?


"In fact, there were several design issues that we encountered. First, if the teacher wants to capture teaching materials and video chat with students, the extendable arm must have folding capability in order to switch between capturing teacher and materials. So the initial idea for a folding, rotatable arm was actually inspired by fire truck ladders.

Second was the size of the camera. Teachers often have crowded desks, so the camera mustn’t be too big in order for it to also be convenient for the teacher to carry. The size is a very important consideration. Because of the smaller size and upright design, the internal technical space of the unit is somewhat restricted. The design of the speaker size of the A30 was determined by the internal space dimensions.

Finally, the A30 is smaller in size than most visualisers, and the space of the average classroom in Taiwan is about 49 square meters, so sound issues must be overcome. The sound volume emitted by the speaker must be sufficiently loud, and echo issues must be addressed because students and the teacher in the physical classroom need to be able to talk with remote students, so these were both technical problems that we needed to address."

What are some common pain points in hybrid/mobile education and how does the A30 help to solve them?


"When we visited a school to research the requirements, teachers reported that there are three main pain points in hybrid teaching:

First, the images are not clear. Students feel that the images are blurry, so we designed our camera to deliver impressive 4K resolution. Whether you take stills or video, the A30 captures every detail perfectly.

Second, the sound is not clear. For example if students have an English listening test, it is necessary for both student and teacher to hear clearly to distinguish if the pronunciation is correct or not. We designed a useful solution: AVer’s AI Acoustics algorithm allows teachers to enjoy teaching without the worry of noise interference.

Thirdly, camera flipping upside down. In order for the teacher to flip the camera without taking time to switch modes, our AI technology offers a seamless switch in image capturing between people and document. The image flips automatically by raising the camera head, allowing teachers to always be seen in the correct orientation."

How does AVerTouch integrate with other software to provide a seamless experience for online teachers and learners?


"Google Classroom is used by most schools in the USA and Taiwan and teachers use the platform to assign homework and to teach. AVerTouch software can be integrated with Google Classroom. Teachers can sync to Google Classroom to automatically save annotated, captured, and recorded files via AVerTouch. Through AVerTouch teachers no longer need to upload and download repeatedly, saving them time. Furthermore, teachers can easily manage homework from students using AVerTouch."

What is the growth forecast for the e-learning market over the next five years?


"E-learning is not a new concept in education. Actually, it has existed for a long time. Because of the pandemic, hybrid learning has become more and more common. Let’s not forget tutoring platforms. Taking K-12 as an example, in the next five years, there will be a growth trend of 5-10% per year. Even after the pandemic, there will still be situations where students are not able to attend in-person classes. Schools will still continue to offer e-learning as part of a holistic, rounded education. Therefore, practical teaching solutions are very important to the education industry."