InfoComm 2017: IVCi’s AV and UC Industry Experts Report on Trends

6/27/2017 10:30:00 AM
By Diane Hagan
With a record-breaking 44,077 registered attendees, InfoComm 2017 just became the largest pro AV show in North America. This year, there was an energy surrounding the event like never before. Walking the floor, the buzz was everywhere. From mesmerizing large-format displays to new cloud offerings and many other exciting announcements, InfoComm 2017 really delivered. Here’s what IVCi’s industry AV and UC experts have to say about exciting new industry trends. [Ed Note: This blog first appeared on www.ivci.com and has been republished here with permission.]

DISPLAYS
Robert Mathews, CTS-D, Collaboration Strategist, IVCi

“The exposition had on view a vast array of display technologies that have evolved significantly in recent years. DV-LED technology is now prevalent and the impact of these bright, high-resolution seamless displays is phenomenal, as is their scalability. The main limit to their application is your imagination.

If a sleeker, more refined display fits the need better, then the finest technology is the Organic Light Emitting Diode (OLED). They have sleek, high contrast, intense colors and crisp resolution, and come in curved, flat, double-sided and even flexible options.

For more innovative, attention-grabbing applications, magnetic disc displays offer a low-resolution display with a percussive sound, which evokes train station nostalgia. For the right application, this technology, combined with its reflective motion capture system, can truly mesmerize those who interact with it.

Interactive displays were more pervasive than ever as the next generation of technology leverages new software to maximize productivity. One technology that stood out from the crowd was the electronic ink displays; nothing comes as close to pen and paper than these, offering a very natural experience. Just don’t try it with a ballpoint pen or marker!

Science Fiction comes one step closer to reality as digital signage displays literally project their content into the air, encouraging hand waves through it with no physical form. Combining this type of ‘hologram’ with motion capture allows those hand waves to generate gesture-based interaction, delighting the user and immersing them into the message that is being delivered.”

AV OVER IP
Tom E. Nyhus, VP Engineering Emerging Technologies, IVCi

“At InfoComm 2017 in Orlando, I was interested in seeing how much AV has matured since last year, especially as it relates to IT teams being able to support the many technologies that make up AV as a mainstream application in an LCM strategy. With more and more IP-centric solutions hitting the market, it is increasingly difficult to get any perspective from manufacturers on how networks should be architected to support these solutions. Running AVoIP on standard switching infrastructure is somewhat unsubstantiated on whether those platforms are really capable of supporting these new protocols. As we are seeing more AV solutions with IT-focused architectures, we are also starting to witness more centralized management and control solutions for these IP systems. This trend toward software-defined AV is also a critical piece of the overall solution as we mature AV in the IT-centric world. It is a very exciting time and I look forward to the many opportunities this evolution brings for creating new business offerings.”

CLOUD SERVICES AND TOUCHSCREENS
Henry H. “Trey” Ore, CTS, Vice President of Sales, Southeast, IVCi

“There’s definitely an increase in cloud-service companies and a major movement toward improving the end-user experience. The industry focus is less about products and infrastructure and more about managing and supporting videoconferencing in the cloud. Also, touchscreens are increasing in popularity; many easy-to-use solutions requiring just one or two touches to initiate a function are really gaining traction.”

In summary, the industry seems to be shifting. The focus now appears to be on simplifying operations and providing a better end-user experience—with new easy-to-use touchscreens; displays getting larger, improving in quality, and becoming more affordable; and cloud services looking as if they’re gaining market share. Also, AV shows signs of maturing in an IT centric world. All of these changes are really exciting, but as the industry keeps rapidly changing, it becomes very difficult to make sense of it all.

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