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Posted by: Paul Weatherhead

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The year 2017 has been quite interesting so far for the AV industry. There have been advancements made in various areas of audio visual technology that are reshaping the industry and, consequently, how AV companies and freelancers approach installation projects.

The AV industry is booming and evolving at a rapid rate. As an AV pro yourself, whether you’re new or a veteran, it’s crucial to keep up with the latest technological advancements driving the industry. Find five such audio visual technology advancements below.

1. AV-Driven Huddle Room Solutions

One of the biggest trends today is that of huddle room solutions. For those who might not be aware of the exact term, huddle rooms refer to a meeting room that can only accommodate around six people at a time. Because of their size and layout, previous AV solutions for huddle rooms have been limited, especially when executing a retrofit installation strategy.

But many vendors, like Huddle Room Technology (HRT) and Ricoh have developed hubs and integrated systems of software and hardware that transform practically any extra room into a potential huddle room.

HRT’s Hubs allow people to push the strengths of the “bring your own device” initiative to the next level. Devices like Ricoh’s interactive whiteboards and videoconferencing projectors show how vital AV is to digitally transforming companies.

Huddle room solutions prove that the old days of retrofitting for AV systems are more than numbered. With so many vital aspects of business becoming digital, it’s necessary for organizations to include AV design from the ground up.

2. Virtual and Augmented Reality (VR and AR)

This sort of technology, while completely possible in our current era, still seems just Blade Runner enough that you can’t imagine it being a widespread change in the industry. But it’s true that VR and AR are changing the way we design and interact with AV systems.

VR headsets can be used to improve clients’ design feedback, offering them a way to literally visualize changes that will be made to their construction spaces. VR can also be a way for designers themselves to iterate ideas not just on paper but in a 3D space.

AR ties into innovations like Ricoh’s interactive whiteboards mentioned above. Augmented reality is a way to mix real space with digital space and increase interactivity. VR and AR go together nicely because they optimize a team’s ability to collaborate and hold long-distance meetings.

3. AV Distributed by IP

You might be sick of hearing about how much AV distribution via IP and cloud technology has been growing in the last year or so, but even late into 2017, this trend is still taking the industry by storm. Companies recognize the need for speedy yet high-quality AV data to be transmitted in an efficient manner for video conferences, presentations, and more.

AV over IP for audio visual technology reduces the amount of physical infrastructure needed by even progressive traditional methods of AV distribution, like HD-Base T and its single cable.

4. No Control Panels

Fewer cables and more digital apps to control AV distribution and displays means a reduced need for control panels and other previously needed infrastructure.

Moving forward, AV companies will need to find and hire freelancers who are skilled in not just things like AV-IP but in redesigning spaces and systems so that technology is all but invisible.

5. Video of Things (VoT)

This last audio visual technology advancement underscores the major theme of AV industry trends in 2017: interconnectivity. From laptops to smartphones and tablets, nearly all devices are capable of being networked. This makes video distribution for conferences infinitely more flexible.

Now is an exciting time to be working in the AV industry as the landscape evolves to near-perfect optimization.

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Paul Weatherhead

Paul Weatherhead

Prior to founding AV Junction Inc., Paul worked for a tier one AV systems integrator in an operational management capacity for 10 years. His knowledge and experience have helped him oversee hundreds of system integration projects in a variety of industries. Paul’s leadership skills as matched by his sense of humour and easygoing nature. When he’s not at work, you can find him outdoors, exploring new places or spending time with family and friends.

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