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From smoking areas to video conferencing rooms: Japan’s AVE trains offer cars for hybrid work

Since the pandemic broke out, almost all workers have experienced an increase in their virtual meetings, especially through video calls. Plus, in these hybrid work environments, these meetings can happen anywhere, even on the go.

That is why Japan’s Central Japan Railway Company has decided to upgrade its smoking spaces into video meeting friendly environments.

Wifi and other facilities

These smoking areas had become obsolete since last year smoking was completely banned in these enclosed spaces. The company has decided to take advantage of these areas and use them more in keeping with the times.

Thus high-speed trains will replace these smoking rooms with areas for video conferencing. These cars will have higher capacity WiFi connectivity to support these meetings at speeds of more than 300 kilometers per hour and will be equipped with other facilities, such as mice, free portable chargers and pads.

Although WiFi connectivity on these high-speed trains is not new, the company acknowledges that the pandemic has made videoconferencing meetings more frequent and that its trains must be prepared so that business travelers can make these calls comfortably.

In addition, the company asks that it be accepted that in this type of wagons there are noises such as that produced when typing on a computer or telephone calls.

Vagones S-Work

The company has remodeled these wagons and has dubbed them “S-Work vehicle”. The WiFi connection they offer has twice the speed than your conventional service. It also offers a privacy screen for laptops. Some trains will even have specific cabins to be able to hold these video meetings in a more private way.

Japan train
Japan train

At the moment, this type of wagons will only be available on a couple of routes and on one type of train, the N700S, whose speed reaches 300 kilometers per hour. What’s more, it will be necessary to reserve these seats if you want to enjoy these spaces to work.