Futuresource Consulting on What New Tech to Expect at ISE

ISE 2019, the world’s largest exhibition for AV and systems integration professionals, opens its doors in a few days and is expected to draw more than 80,000 visitors. As the industry gears up for the show, Futuresource Consulting has identified the key trends and technologies that you need to look out for, including:

Digital Signage, Convergence and Common Ground

Convergence is a key focus within digital signage (DS), with voice and facial recognition (analytics), object recognition, AI and AR all under evaluation or being trialled in concept locations. These technologies could potentially drive demand for more powerful, edge-based processing and storage, generating further business opportunities. With retail remaining the key vertical in DS, there is also a push towards more integration between signage, POS and retailers’ e-commerce platforms and, in terms of hardware, a move to brighter in-window displays.

Futuresource also anticipates a focus on greater commonality for media players, as they work towards HTML5 as a way of simplifying the range of CMS iterations required. With the rise in embedded media players in recent years, also watch out for developments being showcased around embedded media player processing power.

The growing outdoor DS advertising and information/wayfinding vertical is also likely to be a focus at ISE according to Futuresource, as well as meeting room booking, display and wayfinding signage solutions for the corporate and hospitality industries.

8K Flat Panels, High Brightness and OLED

Watch out for higher resolution flat panels on display from a range of vendors. Although it’s a long way from mainstream adoption, Futuresource expects to see a lot more 8K displays, demonstrating the potential of this technology for advanced applications like military and medical. To date, there has been very low adoption, but more vendors are expected to show solutions, especially with next year’s Tokyo Olympics being captured in 8K content. Futuresource does not expected this to trickle down to the mainstream for quite sometime, but vendors will be keen to demonstrate their capabilities and bring something new to the show floor. In addition, there will be a proliferation of 4K displays across the show.

Futuresource also expects vendors to introduce new high brightness products. With the outdoor sector becoming more mission-critical, brands are likely to introduce new products, such as two-sided displays for shop windows, or strongly refresh their product ranges for 2019. Customer engagement in signage will continue at pace, with analytics, targeted advertising and engagement with mobile phones expected to take centre stage.

Flexible OLED will likely be prominent as well, building on the success of January’s CES in Las Vegas. This will take the form of fixed curves or waves, but it’s likely that truly rollable displays will be on the show floor as well. Also, a wide range of collaboration displays will be seen, as vendors intensify their efforts in the battle for the meeting room.

Video Walls Push Away the Bezel

The race for bezel-less displays will continue, with all major vendors competing for the smallest bezel-to-bezel displays on the show floor. Futuresource expects to see sub-1mm bezels as LCD attempts to fend off the advances of NPP LED

Projection Goes Brighter and Lighter

Futuresource expects front projection vendors to be leading with brighter and lighter models this year. As the mainstream market becomes increasingly pressured by other display technologies, more brands are expected to release laser phosphor solutions over 6K lumens, and as the installation space becomes more competitive, weight has become a key differentiator.

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Look out for show-stopping mapped installations, which will be on display across the event, with brands eager to demonstrate how projection technology and mapping software continues to evolve and underline projection’s position as the leading large format display technology, despite LCD, OLED and LED now dominating the majority of stands. An emphasis on projection’s inherent flexibility will be evident, as brands highlight how projection can now compete in new applications like digital signage. Futuresource expects 4K to be another key theme, with brands pushing the brightness boundary of the 4K 0.47 DLP chip.

LED Dominating

LED will have a strong showing, not just from brands looking to develop ranges or introduce LED for the first time, but the sheer amount of LED that will be dressing stands on the show floor. The proliferation of LED technology helps to demonstrate why so many display vendors have rushed to bring products to market and the dazzling year-on-year growth this segment continues to post. Futuresource expects to see the LED brands promoting different aspects of their LED line-ups. Key themes to watch for include:

  • Tighter pixel pitch displays, with P0.9mm a core focus for a handful of brands.
  • MiniLED and MicroLED causing a buzz, though still raising more questions than answers
  • Some vendors will choose to focus on aspects beyond the pure display mechanics, leading with signal processing and advanced features to support integration and maintenance
  • With a keener focus on the rental market, and key hires across leading brands and attention-grabbing product developments, Futuresource expects new product launches to tackle the speed of assembly, access and related issues
  • Though not necessarily a new trend, Futuresource expects to see more vendors launching ‘out-of-the-box’ or fixed size solutions with a range of pixel pitch options. These will predominately be targeting presentation space, but will likely prove popular across a range of applications.

Signal Distribution Hotting Up

Low latency AV over IP has been rising steadily over the past 24 months, with this year’s ISE expected to be the strongest year yet for the market. Futuresource expects to see more solutions than ever on display, with focus on this market at an all-time-high. Expect competing claims, innovative solutions and a wealth of new low-latency products set to disrupt the signal distribution market.

Collaboration in the Meeting Room

The corporate meeting room continues to receive widespread investment from technology providers looking to take advantage of this rapidly growing opportunity. This will be evident at the show, with product launches across a variety of categories, all focusing on the meeting room. Watch out for collaboration displays bringing intelligent interactivity to the meeting room, wireless presentation solutions which create collaborative workspaces and foster greater cooperation amongst employees, and the growth of solutions supporting video and audio conferencing. All these developments are highlighting the growing importance of video communications to businesses. Futuresource expects a wealth of innovative hardware and software solutions competing for space in this increasingly diverse and competitive market.

Gary Kayye

About Gary Kayye

Gary Kayye, founder of rAVe Publications, is one of the most prominent personalities in the audiovisual industry. He has been a contributor to WIRED magazine and a technical advisor and columnist for Sound & Communications magazine as well as an opinionated columnist for rAVe [Publications] since 2003. In addition to his writing and market analysis, Gary has been a product, marketing and business operations consultant to dozens of AV companies in the U.S. and overseas. Clients have included companies such as Sony, Sharp, Epson, Lutron, InFocus, Sanyo, Mitsubishi, NEC and Philips.   Gary, who has been involved with the audiovisual market for over 20 years, was the recipient of the InfoComm 2003 Educator of the Year Award and the 2007 NSCA Instructor of the Year Award. Over the years, he has donated much of his time as an active volunteer in the AV industry’s trade association and served as chairman of InfoComm’s Professional Education & Training Committee (PETC), chairman of the ICIA Design School Committee and chairman of InfoComm’s Installation School Committee. In addition, he has served on the InfoComm board of governors. He also helped grow the InfoComm Projection Shoot-Out as the premiere AV industry trade show special event serving on the committee from 1991 through 1997, and was instrumental in launching the Shoot-Out in the European market at the Photokina Expo in 1994 and 1996 as well as the Asian market at the 1995 and 1997 INFOCOMM Asia shows.   Prior to founding his own company, Gary was vice president of sales and marketing for AMX Corporation (www.amx.com), a manufacturer specializing in professional AV and residential AV control systems. Prior to AMX, Gary spent nine years at Extron Electronics (www.extron.com), rising to the position of vice president of sales and marketing. Gary earned his bachelor’s degree in journalism in 1987 from the University of North Carolina and is currently Adjunct Faculty at UNC in the School of Journalism teaching a class on how future technologies will affect the future of advertising, PR and marketing.   He is also the founder of Swim for Smiles, a non-profit that raises money for the N.C. Children’s Hospital through swimming and other fitness-related events for kids. You can contact him at gary@ravepubs.com..