AV over IP is poised to revolutionize the low-latency professional AV market, according to a newly-released industry report from Futuresource Consulting. Moving from a position of relative obscurity, AV over IP encoder/decoder ports will enjoy a year-on-year increase of over 130%.

Anthony Brennan, Futuresource Consulting

AV over IP describes the distribution of video over an IP network within an enterprise, hospital, or campus at low latencies. Traditionally, the distribution of video from multiple sources to multiple endpoints such as displays, projectors and monitors has required a matrix switcher; a large and costly piece of hardware.

“This is a game changer for the industry and its impact cannot be overstated,” says Anthony Brennan, Research Analyst at Futuresource Consulting. “We’re seeing the beginnings of a trend that will shake up the industry, with our forecasts pointing to a volume CAGR of nearly 50% during the next five years. Make no mistake, AV over IP will transform the way the Pro AV market interacts with and controls AV systems.”

Until recently, AV over IP solutions were considered unrealistic in low-latency Pro AV applications, but they are now competing directly with established technologies and forcing the global matrix switcher market into a period of decline.

“The matrix switcher market is well established,” says Brennan, “and with high barriers to entry it has been monopolised by a handful of large companies. The low barriers associated with AV over IP are allowing smaller companies to compete directly with these large enterprises, merging the worlds of IT and AV, placing software solutions at the heart of the AV industry and fostering innovation and competition. For savvy vendors equipped with the right market information, the scale of the opportunity is enormous.”

From signal distribution brands to IT software and infrastructure players and the wider Pro AV community, the effects of this transition are far-reaching. Furthermore, the threat to established vendors is being amplified by their investments in AV over IP.

“The major signal distribution and control players have tough decisions to make,” adds Brennan. “They must risk cannibalizing their own core businesses by wholesale investment in AV over IP or fall by the wayside as the new Pro AV land grab takes hold.”

Futuresource expects AV over IP solutions to see rapid adoption across most industry verticals, including corporate, education, government, and leisure and hospitality with varying adoption levels in healthcare and residential markets. Short-term, entertainment and higher education applications are forecast to see the highest levels of penetration.

“We’re hearing from vendors that their conversations with users have shifted to the benefits of individual products and competitive advantage,” comments Brennan. “They no longer need to convince users that IP technology is a viable option for low latency signal distribution. This represents a significant shift in mindset for the wider AV world.

“However, these are only the beginnings. We’re already seeing a rapid uptake of AV over IP, but the hockey stick moment has yet to arrive. Our forecasts indicate that by mid to late 2018 the market will be primed and ready to take-off. The companies that embrace the opportunity now will command an enviable market position next year.”

The AV Over IP Report is now available on the Futuresource report portal. For more information please contact leon.morris@futuresource-hq.com.

Anthony Brennan, research analyst, is a member of the B2B Displays team at Futuresource Consulting. Having worked closely on the Flat Panel Quarterly Tracking Service, Anthony currently focuses on researching and analysing peripheral technologies in the AV industry including the likes of AV over IP and Wireless Presentation Solutions. Anthony’s experience covering a diverse range of segments in the Pro AV market helps keep Futuresource Consulting’s clients up-to-date with important trends and technologies impacting the space. Anthony graduated from the University of Leeds with a First Class Honours degree in Economics and Politics.