When you’re organizing events, the desire to be a good fiscal steward means you should examine every additional cost. But one that you should approve is laptop rental for presentations, videos, or streaming the hybrid portion of your event. “Rental for a laptop on average is less than – $300,” says Encore VP of Product Management Matthew Johnsen. It’s a small investment for buying peace of mind and ensuring your tech suite is fully capable and integrated with the rest of your set-up.

Let’s examine why that is.

What could go wrong if you use your laptop?

“Some organizations will lock down your USB port,” Johnsen points out. “That’s a problem because web cameras connect through the USB port on your laptop.”

Your work laptop also might not have an internet jack, which is a must if you want a secure, reliable wired Internet connection to stream videos or other content.

Connection settings and software compatibility are other potential hold-ups that can be circumvented by using equipment owned by your event technology provider. With a personal laptop, you can’t troubleshoot connections and compatibility in advance. “Renting a laptop allows our technicians to properly set it up. We know it works with our web cameras. And if there’s audio associated with the web camera, we can make sure that it is tagged,” shared Johnsen. It’s the best way meeting organizers can show up knowing that everything is ready to go and to eliminate surprises.

“Another issue meeting and event planners don’t think about when using personal equipment is how that ties their machine to the meeting and might expose potentially personal information to the meeting participants. For example, if you have Microsoft Outlook open while you’re sharing your screen, everyone in the meeting might see email previews pop up during the presentation. This not only is distracting, but it might also reveal sensitive information.

In this way, renting a laptop reduces risk. “We can lock down the rental laptop so there won’t be any distracting pop-ups,” Johnsen explains.

matt johnson of encore
Matthew Johnsen
VP of Product Management
And since your personal computer won’t be connected to the projector, you’ll be able to work without disrupting anyone, or having anyone else see what you’re doing. You also won’t have to worry about disconnecting and reconnecting your laptop to the projector during breaks.

What could go wrong if you use your laptop?

“Not all laptops are created equal,” Johnsen says. Laptops possess different processing powers. To narrow down the options, ask yourself:

      • Is this a presentation-only meeting? Or will you be showing videos and other rich media?
      • Will there be audio connected to your presentation that has to be heard by remote and in-person viewers?

If you will be showing videos, you will need a laptop with a higher-quality graphics card, audio output, and level of processing power than a presentation-only meeting. Depending on the content and quality required, the event technology provider may prefer to provide a second laptop or dedicated video playback device solely for your rich media content.

If there will be hybrid remote as well as in-room participants, make sure your event technology provider knows the platform you’ll be using so they can pre-load the proper software. For example, Teams, Zoom, Webex, and so on. That way, the meeting can truly be plug and play.

“Renting a laptop provides peace of mind and ensures that the machine you use is secure and properly configured,” Johnsen says. “Plus, it frees you up to do your thing during the meeting.”

That’s a considerable return on a minimal investment. And that’s why you should consider a laptop rental for your next event.

Laptops are just one of the hybrid essentials for small meetings. If you want to learn more about other essential components that enhance events, download our free workbook here. You can also view our ProEDge session on Hybrid Essentials for Small Meetings here.

Remember: Event technology doesn’t have to be complex or confusing. The Encore team offers technology solutions and expert advice to help you navigate the boundless possibilities and identify the best solution for you. Contact us for advice on how to transform your next meeting or event experience.

Kristi Casey


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