I’m back from the InfoComm show, and a fairly pervasive theme was how the AV world is undergoing dramatic change. I participated in the IMCCA Unified Communications panel “The Convergence of AV and IT” that provided some interesting observations on how IT is already consuming aspects of the traditional AV world. Throughout the week I talked to more than 20 customers and resellers who are either excited to see software play a bigger role in the AV market, or they are lamenting their inability to match the pace of change. What role does an AV distributor play when there is no hardware to inventory? How can a managed services hardware company transform itself to leverage software as a service and the cloud?
I was still thinking some of the issues through on my ride into work this morning, and I found myself next to a car with a bright 17-inch display in the dash. As the car pulled away, I noticed it was the somewhat rare Tesla Model S. When a single car can now sport in-dash infotainment and AV command center that rivals my home theater, the world of AV is not just changing, it’s already changed.
Large computing companies have decided to strategically target traditional AV problems, and as a result they have their sights set on the AV market as a whole. Intel’s WiDi was not an accident, and its “Displays as a Service” is a hint of more exciting things on the horizon.
Just a few months ago, Jen-Hsun Huang setup a grand goal for Nvidia – lighting every pixel on the planet by 2017. Presumably he means Nvidia computing hardware will power the worlds rapidly expanding base of displays. (The display in the Tesla S is powered by the Nvidia Tegra). The goal is ambitious, but if you’ve heard me talk about the Pixel Landscape before, then you know there were 17 trillion pixels deployed in our public spaces in 2011. This doesn’t include mobile and personal devices. Where are these displays? According to Nvidia, in 2017 they are on the hundreds of millions of devices we use everyday, specifically:
- 500M LTE Devices
- 200M Tablets
- 50M In-car displays
- 20M mobile game devices
Assuming the average resolution of each of these devices is 1280×1024 (a cautious guess), there are just about a tillion, million ( 1,009,254,400M, or about 1 Quintillion) pixels that Nvidia hopes to capture by 2017. I applaud the vision. It is this type of thinking that those running companies in the AV industry needs.