The market for AV products is becoming more complex as technologies are introduced and refreshed. This complexity is driven by the user’s expectations of universal connectivity. This means connectivity hardware must be selected in an informed and precise way from a versatile and flexible product portfolio. To share, extend, connect and convert signals is crucial in creating complex AV systems. The digitalisation of the world is reflected in these modern, versatile and powerful AV solutions and in turn, these solutions form the connected world.
When AV technology is mentioned, most people will think of large digital signage installations or complex broadcast control rooms. But AV connectivity has become an in-demand technology in the rapidly growing connected home & office markets. From the earliest TVs and radios, we have become accustomed to technology in the home and that familiarity has only increased in todays markets. Now many homes have multiple displays, smart home systems and computers.
AV connectivity is still an underutilised factor with these new consumer products, but can provide tools that are easy to install and convenient to use, especially when distributing signals to multiple displays or devices around a home or place of work.
Discreet devices are key in home and office locations where space is at a premium. Connectivity using as few devices and as little space as possible is now expected from users. Connected home & office environments are also expected to be linked to one another, users want to take a laptop from home, connect it to a docking station and work seamlessly between the two locations.
Cables, adapters and docking stations form the basis for connected home & office solutions by providing versatility and power in space-efficient, easy to use systems. These devices not only form the basis for home offices in private, residential environments but are used to create contemporary mobile workstations for use in professional work environments.
We are currently experiencing a shift towards more intelligent, efficient and purposeful work. Thanks to new technologies it is now possible to use home and office space more effectively, which has formed the basis for remote and mobile work. And this trend is gaining momentum.
The market share of desktop PCs is decreasing as notebooks, ultrabooks and tablet computers take a larger share of the market. The crucial thing that ties all of these devices together, is connectivity, the ability to connect any of these devices and process, scan, copy, save and send data to displays and other devices. The homes and workplaces of the future place increasing demands on the advanced technology that power them. Designing optimal working spaces at home or at work is now vital to increase productivity. Powerful, compact switches and hubs provide a diverse range of connections in a small form factor to allow for efficient working and powerful home AV & IT networks.
With this technology becoming more ubiquitous the market looks to integrators and installers for guidance so consumers and businesses can choose solutions that provide the most reliable and powerful connectivity using the smallest amount of space. This guidance must be continually reviewed as new technologies are added to homes and offices. The largest shift in the market since the introduction of laptops and tablets has come in the form of smart home technologies and automation in the home and workplace.
How will AV connectivity evolve over the next few years as a major player in the home and office markets?
Residential projects such as apartment blocks are integrating more home automation than ever before and are also combining these technologies with AV systems that allow for content to be controlled from a central switch, splitter or matrix that delivers signals to multiple displays in lobbies, and even through multiple displays in a single apartment. These solutions call for versatile devices that can be integrated easily, even over long distances.