One year since his first InfoComm as Executive Director, David Labuskes shares his thoughts on new players (Microsoft) and new additions to the show ahead.
SCN: Microsoft is exhibiting at the show for the first time this year. How do you think that ties into the show’s theme of “AV Moving Forward”?
InfoComm International's David Labuskes
David Labuskes: This is InfoComm International’s 75th year as a trade association. But as satisfied as we are with where we’ve been, it can’t compare with where we will be in the future, and more importantly, where the industry will be. So, while we will be celebrating what got us to this important milestone, I wanted to make sure that our primary focus is on continuing to drive the industry forward. And Microsoft’s involvement in the show is certainly an important watershed moment for us. To have a company as large as Microsoft, and a company as traditionally affiliated with IT as Microsoft is, involved in the InfoComm show as a major sponsor, it’s nothing short of amazing. That being said, I also know that you are going to see some great advancements from our traditional exhibitor base, and who knows what groundbreaking idea is waiting to be discovered at a new 10x10 booth? That’s the magic of the audiovisual industry—and by extension, the magic of InfoComm.
SCN: InfoComm is constantly working to expand and improve the show. What is new and different this year?
DL: This year we have a new Security Solutions Pavilion, a hands-on area of the show floor relating to InfoComm standards, education sessions that are more experiential and reflect today’s learning styles, a 75th Anniversary Awards Dinner, and our two new pre-show Solutions Summits on UCC and Digital Signage.
SCN: This year’s show features a pre-show Solutions Summit. This sounds like an invaluable opportunity for tech managers. What can they expect to gain from it?
David Labuskes at InfoComm 13.
DL: I think it’s important to give technology managers the opportunity to take a deep dive into some the most popular network AV applications—UCC and Digital Signage. Technology managers and in-house AV specialists from all vertical markets are under intense pressure to make the most of their time spent outside the office or facility. By having all-day sessions pre-show, and having other shorter classes available during the show days, it makes it easier for this audience to learn, see the newest products in the field on the show floor and network with peers in a practical way. Solutions Summit participants will learn from leading manufacturers and integrators, and see how technology managers like them deploy UCC and digital signage systems.
SCN: InfoComm now has trade shows all over the world. What are the factors that continue to draw an international contingent to Las Vegas?
DL: While our shows outside the U.S. continue to gain in popularity and fill an important need, no commercial audiovisual trade show offers more exhibits, more industry education, or more networking opportunities than the North American InfoComm event. Even with the strong widespread support for our other events around the world, InfoComm is still an important part of the AV executive’s annual schedule.