The Intelligence Age
2015 continued us down the path of the Information Age. However due to the increase in capabilities within consumer devices, the way is being paved for a new Intelligence Age. This means when we can finally start doing something useful with all that data our "smart" devices have been collecting.
Sensors: This technology is currently available in many forms such as occupancy sensing, RFID, NFC, and Bluetooth beaconing. Right now many of these technology are fads and used sparingly in select applications. I believe 2016 will show these fads finally fading, and allowing the technology to work together in ways that allow the AV systems to become part of a larger building intelligence system. Data from systems that manage room scheduling or Bluetooth beaconing to track users within a facility can tie into building lighting and HVAC systems to create a more efficient environment.
Bring Your Own Identity: BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) has been popping up all over the place within technology systems. 2016 will start to see useful implementations of the BYOI (Bring Your Own Identity) model. BYOI works by authenticating a user inside the enterprise network by their trusted identity. This can be bound to a mobile device or RFID card, but eventually will evolve into an identity within the cloud based infrastructure. This will allow users to show up to a meeting with their identity, without needed extraneous devices. My content, applications, preference, etc. are associated with my identity that I can use to access systems allowed to me. This will become more common as AV/IT converges even further; eliminating the need to bring a mobile device and download an app in order to present and collaborate with the room systems. It pushes the user-cumbersome tasks into the background and allows for a seamless and intelligent user-experience.
UCC Bridging and True Collaboration: The last major trend the intelligence age will bring is the convergence of unified communications and collaboration platforms. Many players have been coming to market with wireless collaboration technologies and UCC bridging software. The user of the future is going to want to be automatically identified and authenticated into the system, then be given the option to connect to a conference in the manner they choose regardless of the host platform. Right now this is partially possible but it requires multiple pieces of software, and even then the full user experience is not there. With the way these technologies have been advancing, I am hopeful that 2016 will bring some major improvements that will change the way AV/IT behaves in shaping the ultimate experience.
Jonathan Owens is a multi-disciplinary Consultant at Shen Milsom & Wilke, LLC. Owens has more than 10 years of experience in audio and audiovisual design, engineering, acoustics for a wide variety of projects including corporate, commercial, fine arts performance centers, entertainment facilities, higher education, K-12 schools, and healthcare facilities. Owens is also a professional recording/mixing engineer and sound designer.