How to set up BYOD mode on Neat Board devices

Last updated on June 24, 2024

While Neat devices deliver great experiences through the Zoom Room and Microsoft Teams Room native applications, we understand our customers may sometimes be invited to meetings on other services, without a platform-level interoperability solution available. For these scenarios, we want to give our customers a method to use Neat devices on any platform. The BYOD Mode feature offers the ability to use Neat devices for ad-hoc meetings requiring a 3rd party video service, while making the benefits of Neat’s hardware and firmware features available.

This guide will provide step-by-step instructions on how to enable BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) Mode, on your Neat Board and Neat Board 50. For instructions on how to enable BYOD mode for Bar/Bar Pro/Bar Gen 2 please see: How to set up BYOD mode on Neat Bar devices.

Warning: When running a Neat device in BYOD mode, the videoconferencing application installed during out-of-box setup (Zoom or Teams) is terminated. Because the application cannot communicate with its cloud, you may see the devices appear offline in your Zoom or Teams cloud admin portal. Connectivity to Neat Pulse is maintained during BYOD Mode.

1. Requirements

Single Cable Setup (Neat Board 50):

  • Personal Computer that supports DisplayPort Alt mode Protocol
  • USB-C cable (3.0 or higher) that supports DisplayPort Alt mode Protocol
    • Note: USB-C adapters are supported, but individual testing is required

Note: Even though USB-C is capable of supporting DisplayPort Alt Mode, not all cables will have this capability. Users should verify their cables support DisplayPort Alt Mode to ensure compatibility. USB-C cables certified for Thunderbolt 3 or above are also compatible with DisplayPort Alt Mode.

Double Cable Setup (Neat Board/Board 50):

  • Personal Computer that supports HDMI-Out through direct or dongles
  • USB-C to USB-C or USB-A to USB-C cable (3.0 or higher)
  • HDMI Cable (existing content-share HDMI cable can be used for BYOD Mode on Board)
    • Note: USB-C to HDMI adapters are supported.

Currently, BYOD Mode supports only High-Speed (USB 2.0) data transfer rates due to temporary software limitations. Super Speed (USB 3.0) cabling is recommended for future updates supporting Super Speed connectivity.

2. Instructions

2.1 Enable BYOD Mode

  1. Navigate to Neat’s System Settings.
    • For Zoom: Settings -> General -> System settings
    • For Microsoft Teams: More -> Settings -> Device settings
  2. Under Neat System Settings -> System -> Scroll down and enable the BYOD Mode toggle.
  3. Once the BYOD Mode toggle is enabled, USB passthrough functionality becomes fully automatic. When Neat devices are wired as mentioned in 2.2. Set up cables for BYOD Mode, the devices will immediately be accessible from your computer as USB-connected peripherals.

Warning: Zoom and Microsoft Teams rooms will be “offline” from the platform’s perspective when using BYOD Mode because the application on the Neat device has been temporarily closed.

2.2 Set up cables for BYOD Mode

2.2.1 Double cable set up

  • First connect one end of the required HDMI cable to the HDMI-in (local) port on the back of the Board and the other end to your computer.

Note: For double cable setups, the HDMI cable must be connected FIRST to activate BYOD Mode on your Board. If on a Windows/Linux system, touchscreen capabilities will allow for the Board to interact with your computer.

  • Once you see your computer’s display mirrored or extended to the Neat Board, connect one end of the USB-C cable to the back of the Board (Figure 4) and the other end to your computer. BYOD Mode will automatically commence.
Figure 2. Neat Board Port Schematics (Simplified)
Figure 3: Board 50 Cable set up for USBC with HDMI-in

2.2.1 Single cable set-up – Board 50 ONLY:

  • Connect a USB-C cable from the laptop to the Neat Board’s USB-C port (Figure 1).
Figure 4: Board 50 Single cable BYOD setup

2.3. Set Neat Device as your default Video and Audio Devices

  1. Open your preferred video conferencing application on your computer.
  2. Set the default devices for the camera, microphone, and/or speakers to the Neat Device (named ‘Neat Bar…’ or ‘Neat Bar Pro…’).
    • You can enable only the hardware you need. For example, use the Neat device’s camera and microphone while using your computer’s built-in speakers etc.

Note: If you are having issues with adjusting the volume on Mac devices, please review this article by Apple on adjusting sound output settings.

Platform Setup Articles:

3. BYOD mode behavior

3.1 BYOD mode behavior

  • Once BYOD is activated you will be able to select the mic, camera, and speaker of the Neat Board from the conferencing application running on your laptop.
  • Camera controls can be accessed from the Swipe left menu. If a Neat Pad is paired to the Board at the Neat level it will also switch to BYOD mode and provide the camera control directly on the Pad.
Figure 5: Neat Pad paired to Board at Neat level during BYOD Mode

3.2 Limitations

  • There are no audio settings on the Pad or Board/Board 50, but volume control remains accessible from your computer.
  • BYOD Mode will be disabled if your computer goes into Standby/Sleep as the Board will no longer detect a signal over the cable(s) connected to your device.

3.3 Summary of Board 50 behavior based on cable setup

This behavior only applies when BYOD Mode is already enabled in System Settings

Setup In CallOutside a call
Single Cable (USB-C with DP)Screen Share into the meetingBYOD Mode
Double Cable (USB-C + HDMI)Screen Share into the meetingBYOD Mode
Table 1: Summary of BYOD behavior based on Cable setup

Enjoy the Neat experience on any platform!

With this, you should be fully set to use your Neat Bar or Neat Board with any video conferencing application!