Getting Started with Meeting Room 365

How to get set up on Meeting Room 365, and provision your first displays.

Put together a display, just like this one, in about 5 minutes.

We’ve recently launched a new version of our app, which supports our Native Meeting Room applications, and a more secure version of the Microsoft Office 365 API. You can read more about that here:

What you’ll need:

  1. A small tablet with a web browser and an internet connection. At least 8" is recommended. Android, iOS, and Windows will work great.
  2. Mounting hardware. There are tons of options here. Search Amazon for the mounting hardware that makes the most sense to you, ranging from $3 for 3M velcro mounting adhesive strips, or $100 for a secure, aluminum designer mount (Hekler Design).
  3. Extra-long power cord & Power adapter. Self-explanatory. You’re going to need a reliable power adapter, and an extra-long power cable that reaches your desired mounting location. We also recommend picking up some zip ties or 3M adhesive strips if you’re worried about dangling cables.
  4. Office 365 Tenant Credentials
  5. A free Meeting Room 365 account.

Downloading the Apps

The biggest change with this version of our application is that everything starts from the Tablet. Since credentials are stored on the tablets, there’s no need to provision anything before getting started.

Native apps are currently available in the above three App stores

Native apps are currently available in the iTunes App Store, Amazon App Store, and Google Play Store. Download the app to your device to get started.

Here’s what you should see when you open the app for the first time.

Provision your Resource Mailbox in Office 365

Next, you’ll need to provision your resource mailbox from the Office 365 Admin portal.

You will need to login to your Office 365 admin portal and provision free meeting room mailboxes. You will not be charged for these meeting-room-only accounts, but they will all get an email address @yourdomain.com (or the onmicrosoft.com variant).

1. Log into your Office 365 Admin Portal.

Log into https://portal.office365.com, and navigate to your Admin Portal. You can access the admin portal from the waffle menu.

2. Create a new meeting room.

To get started, select ‘Rooms & Equipment’ from the left, which takes you to https://admin.microsoft.com/AdminPortal/Home

Next, click the plus icon to create a new meeting room.

3. Configure your new meeting room.

Name: You will need to give it a name. This is the name that will be displayed in your Outlook calendar.

Email: You will need to create an email address for this room. You can choose whatever you wish, but your users will see this name. You will not be billed for this email address.

Room Capacity: This lets your users see how many attendees can fit into this room. This is a suggestion for your users. It will not limit the number of attendees who can be invited to a calendar event.

4. Reset the password for the new mailbox.

Before you can link your new mailbox to Meeting Room 365, you will need to reset the password for the new mailbox.

To do this, navigate to USERS > ACTIVE USERS in the left navigation, which takes you to: https://admin.microsoft.com/AdminPortal/Home#/users

Next, select the user who corresponds to your meeting room and select ‘Reset Password’ from the right.

You will need to reset the password for your newly-created user.

Save the email address and new password. You will need this to complete the next steps.

5. Complete Provisioning in Meeting Room 365

This will provision a display that automatically updates when your meeting room is booked via Outlook.


Logging into Meeting Room 365 (Admin Portal)

Now, you can log into your Meeting Room 365 Admin portal from any computer to manage the displays associated with your Office 365 Tenant. In the future, simply visit: https://beta.meetingroom365.com/ to view your Admin portal or manage display configuration.

Mounting your Hardware

We support native apps for most devices on Android, iOS, and the Amazon Fire Tablet.

You can also use any tablet with a Web Browser, including the Surface, iPad, Android, and Amazon tablets, in full-screen mode.

Haven’t selected a tablet yet?

We recommend the Amazon Fire Tablet or iPad Mini.

The iPad Mini (any generation) can be purchased with the Heckler Design Wall Mount for a premium experience.

Apple usually has inexpensive inventory of the Refurbished iPad Mini 2 that makes for a really stunning display.

Incredibly-low prices for Amazon Certified Refurbished tablets

You can get a used/refurbished/returned tablet in like-new condition (previous generation), with “special offers”, from as low as $25 bucks. Throw in some inexpensive adhesive strips for mounting, and this could be your most cost-effective option for adding meeting room displays to your conference rooms.

My cart total came out to just $27.41 per room!

Other Hardware

Looking for something else?

You could try the 8" NuVision Windows 10 Tablet ($60)https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B01MYZEPGP/

and an inexpensive universal tablet mount: https://www.amazon.com/Damage-free-Dockem-Smartphones-eReaders-chrome-plated/dp/B008E0Q0C0/


You can also opt to use older hardware you might have lying around. Anything with a web browser will do. For example, a meeting room display might be a great use for a Windows RT tablet you aren’t using. We even have a guide for the Raspberry Pi! Reach out if you have something you want to try.


Other Mounting Hardware

Looking for an “invisible mounting solution”? Try this invisible mounthttps://www.amazon.com/PadTab-Damage-Free-Universal-locations-smartphones/dp/B01EBAOUZ0/

or 3m velcro adhesive strips https://www.amazon.com/3M-Company-RF9731-Re-Close-Strip/dp/B001LTTNOI/

Mount Displays

Once everything is set up, you’re ready to mount your displays. This is probably the most challenging part of this guide.

Depending on the hardware you choose, you will either need to mount your display using 3m adhesive (fastest), or drywall / mounting screws.

For instance, the Koala Mount consists of two small, sturdy plastic brackets that gently cradle your device. Designed to be used with 3M Command Strips (included). The strips are rated to hold up to 5 lbs each (far more than any tablet). To remove, the strips can simply be stretched off without causing any damage.

Configure your tablet for Kiosk mode

Next, you’ll probably want to configure your tablet so that it doesn’t put it’s display to sleep, or power down on idle. For most hardware, this is called Kiosk Mode, and you can find instructions for most devices by googling <Tablet Name> Kiosk Mode.

If you have an iPad, for example, the quickest solution is to enable “Guided Access”. Howtogeek has a detailed tutorial for how to do this on an iPad:

If you’re on Android, it’s called “Pin-task mode”:

Note: If you want to further “lock down” your Android device, try “Lock-task mode”:

If you’re on Windows, you can use this guide to create a Kiosk:

Other things to Consider

Power

You will also need to provide continuous power to your display. Fortunately, Extra-long USB cables for most tablets can be purchased inexpensively on Amazon, along with cable clips and more 3m adhesive tape (optional).

Using off-the-shelf components and tools, you can put together a display you’re proud of!

Localization

We’ve put together a short guide on localizing your display. Check it out!

Other Considerations

By default, in Office 365, a Resource mailbox’s calendar will show the organizer’s name instead of the subject in an Exchange Server environment. You will need to run a short PowerShell command to solve this issue.

The Meeting Room 365 admin portal gives you an option to run this remotely (from our machines) after your tablet is provisioned.


If you’re stuck, you can always send an email to Meeting Room 365, and we can help you out with setup, configuration, and provisioning.


Thanks for reading!

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