The Visualist Blog

Unanswered Questions InfoComm 2013 Will Solve

While on the plane last night to InfoComm, the world’s top audio visual technology conference and showcase, I sat pondering about the eye candy I would soon see on the show floor – giant projection maps, bigger and brighter LED screens and amazing content delivery systems.  I’m also hoping to see something unexpected. The pixel density may threaten to tear a hole in the space time continuum. But to make sense of all the “look at me” booths and determine the real emerging trends, I’ve created a list of questions I hope the show will answer :

  • How will mobility trends impact more traditional AV?  How is The AV community reacting to the tremendous pressure for individuals to use their own devices rather than specialized AV hardware?  Certainly BYOD is something that almost everyone is aware of at this point, but I wonder how the companies  defining new products for sharing, controlling, storing, displaying and distributing media will address users who want to make use of tablets, phones, and even next generation of wearable computers  into their products.
  • AV and IT have already converged, now what? I often hear folks point out that the AV and IT markets are converging.  I have a problem with the tense of that statement, because I strongly believe they already have.  What is room control software from companies like Crestron other than software from the IT world that solves traditional AV problems?  The real question is now that this new space has been created, which companies will be able to take advantage of it?  I was asked to join the IMCCA panel on IT/AV convergence at InfoComm so I’ve been doing quite a bit of thinking in this area and it looks like this new combined market presents huge opportunities. Companies must understand it and can engineer products in this new area.  I hope to learn what will be developed that involve aspects of  both communities?  Who will be flexible enough  to abandon older business models for ones that are informed by the software community? From some company previews I’ve gotten, InfoComm should tell us a lot.
  • What is collaboration?  This is a big topic that probably warrants its own post, and I’ve been struggling with it for some time.  Is collaboration talking to someone’s face through a video teleconference?  Is it being able to show PowerPoint to a display wirelessly?  Is it media streaming? What about document synchronization and management?  The AV world has a lot to offer here, especially because collaboration is fundamentally an audio and visual experience.  With all of the new “collaboration” technologies that have emerged even in the past year (SolsticeTidebreakWOW Vision), we have a great opportunity to help define what technology-supported collaboration should look like. End users are already defining it for themselves, I hope at InfoComm we see that AV companies are listening.

Will you be at InfoComm?  Swing by our booth (number 4559) and share some of your own insights with me.  Look forward to seeing you there!

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