The global pro AV market is expected to reach $114 billion in 2016, a sign that the industry is poised to continue its upward trajectory. Every year, new AV innovations are released, causing many value-added resellers (VARs) to wonder where the industry as a whole is headed.
It’s something that we’ve wondered ourselves. That’s why today we’re taking a look at some of the key trends that we expect to emerge as the future of AV technology unfolds.
1. Further integration with IT.
Today, all types of AV systems are integrating with IT, from video conferencing to digital signage. But in the future, AV and IT are likely to be one and the same. Customers will simply expect their AV systems to live on the IT network and to offer the same flexibility and features as their other IP-enabled devices. Now is the time to dive into the IT integration approach with both feet; it will help put you ahead of the competition in the future.
2. More of a prominent role in all types of environments.
Years ago, AV systems were an afterthought in building and office design. In the future, AV is going to take a much more prominent role in these types of early-stage decisions, simply because the technology is playing such a pivotal role in a wide variety of companies and organizations.
This is especially true for those markets that rely heavily on digital communication, such as distance learning in education, telemedicine in the healthcare world, and telecommuting employees in corporate environments. In the future, your customers will expect remote and mobile communication to be even more seamless than it is today; in many cases, their very business model will depend upon it, which makes AV a vital part of their organization.
3. More cloud- and service-based products.
Your current business may revolve primarily around AV hardware, with software acting as a necessary component of each installation. However, many experts agree that the AV industry will only continue moving toward cloud- and service-based technologies, with less of an emphasis on the actual hardware.
Over time, this shift may cause a significant change in your own business. However, the potential for growth in this area is incredible. You might consider preparing for the uptick in cloud- and service-based AV by gradually incorporating them into your product offering in the next several years. That way, you’ll be poised for success once their growth truly accelerates.
4. Greater innovation around other systems.
How might pro AV systems communicate and integrate with other, non-related technologies, such as physical and cybersecurity and transaction systems? In the near future, many customers may be interested in integrating AV with other systems in order to achieve greater visibility into their business and realize improved efficiencies and cost savings. From the VAR perspective, this means adopting a bigger-picture mentality, remaining flexible and constantly learning—all characteristics that can only benefit your business as AV continues to grow and evolve.
What other pro AV trends do you expect in the coming years? Which do you think will have the most staying power?