InfoComm International has organized the world’s largest and most comprehensive audio and video technology trade shows for over 75 years. This year’s show was in Orlando Florida, and the close to 40,000 participants spanned over 500,000 square feet of technology booths, special exhibits, and classes. Synergy attended the show in order to network with industry colleagues, learn about trends, and of course to see the latest advancements in communication technology. We invest in attending InfoComm to ensure we keep our client offerings up-to-date with cutting-edge industry developments in order to consult you best as our trusted partner. We look for solutions we can use in our own corporate applications to further understand working with technology in our own day-to-day. We wouldn’t expect you to buy into something we haven’t used ourselves.
With so much audiovisual to see and hear in only 3 short days, we thought we’d highlight the most pertinent aspects for you:
There are many exciting things happening in the video realm. 3 main points we feel may impact you the most in the near future:
- 4K resolution – (not to be confused with Ultra HD) A range of true 4K 4096 x 2160 pixels (approximately a 1.9:1 aspect ratio) products were on display, complete with source content and infrastructure to deliver 4K at 60hrz with 4:4:4 color space. What this means to you? 4K is much more ready to be implemented into real world applications, such as geologists/geophysicists who need to look at maps and seismic info, run virtual reality applications, host project simulations, etc.
- Larger displays – There are plenty 80” 90” and 98” options available with Ultra HD resolution (3840 x 2160 pixels), either with or without touch interactivity. These range in price from $4000 to $40,000. Some of the best options we saw were from Planar.The World’s largest LCD display was at Sharp Electronics’ booth. It features Ultra HD resolution (3,840 x 2,160 pixels) in a 120” LCD. With a price tag close to that of some mid-range exotic Italian sports cars, this display probably won’t fit into most budgets—but it was definitely COOL to see!
- Laser/LED Projection – More and more projectors were on display with laser and LED projection, eliminating the need for costly consumable lamps. One solution that really stood out was the DNP LaserPanel, A 100” projection screen with a short throw Laser projector that could be hidden in the ceiling or in a credenza below the screen. With a price tag closer to that of a lightly used Honda Civic (around $6,000) this option will fit into most budgets.
As more companies are implementing BYOD (bring your own device) and re-purposing smaller spaces for collaboration, there are MANY manufacturers offering collaboration tools. Tools that allow users to share content on one main screen with or without wires, having abilities to mirror their mobile phones or tablets, and being able to annotate and/or manipulate shared files all on the fly. There are 3 main leaders in the collaboration space:
- Barco Clickshare – The one click wonder! A small appliance connects to the main display and users have a USB dongle with a button connected to their laptop. They click the button to screen-share. Using a downloadable app, iOS and Android users can also mirror their mobile devices to the screen. With the ClickShare model CSC-1, up to 4 people can share their content at the same time with a “Brady Bunch” like effect.
- Christie Brio – Utilizes existing wireless technology like Network Projector on Windows and AirPlay on iOS for users to share content wirelessly to one or two displays. The Brio resides on your network giving your users as much or as little access to cloud/internet as you deem appropriate. Can be its own WAP or integrate with your existing infrastructure. Built-in electronic whiteboard feature pairs nicely with a touch screen to annotate important details on a shared document. Capture those images with annotation directly onboard HDD, over the network, or on a USB stick. Connect, collect, share!
- Kramer VIA – First appliance-based collaboration solution to provide 1024−bit encryption. Login using conventional Wi−Fi or LAN connections, with the ability to support third-party apps like Microsoft Office®, GotoMeeting®, Lync®, and WebEx®. Users can collaborate over a shared Excel document and make changes on the fly, or they can view images, and stream HD video. All with built-in annotation tools to boot!
Of course all the usual suspects were in attendance with their proprietary, non-conforming solutions. Folks tend to look at solutions like Acano and Pexip for interoperability of these solutions, and yet there is a solution which encompasses a PTZ camera, hardware based codec, unlimited soft codec licensing, cloud infrastructure, and full interoperability across Cisco, Polycom, WebRTC, and yes even Lync. The solution is StarLeaf. Simple to use, a breeze to deploy/manage, easy on the pocket book. Video Conferencing that just works.
That’s it folks! There was definitely a ton to see, but we hope this brief summary got you caught up. If you are interested in any of the aforementioned solutions, please contact us! We’d be happy to provide a demo in your office, or you can visit SynergyCT headquarters to see some of these solutions deployed in our executive conferencing center. (Yes, we actually use the technology too!) Come meet with us to see how technology can address your business needs & goals, and how we bring people and ideas together.