A Contrarian’s View of the 3-D Craze

Okay, so I’m not generally one to buck industry trends entirely, but I have to say, I’m simply not on this 3-D bandwagon.  Since 2008, we’ve been inundated with 3-D as the be-all, end-all of coming AV display trends. At the 2010 Infocomm, you couldn’t swing aswagbag without smacking a 3-D projector, 3-D flat-panel display, or 3-D […]

Specialize

The phrase “you can’t be everything to everybody” gets tossed around a lot, but people seldom stop to think it through and ponder the importance of that message. I’m not aware of any successful small or medium-sized business that has ever become successful through doing a whole bunch of things half-assed, as opposed to doing […]

Audio Video To Do’s for 2011

1. Ditch that pile of remotes: Aren’t you tired of having at least three remotes to simply watch anything on TV these days? My biggest pet peeve is going over to a friend’s house and trying to watch the game, or anything for that matter, and taking forever to figure out which remote from the ‘80s that happens […]

Who’s Integrating YOUR Local Starbucks?

I was at the local Starbucks here this morning and noticed something interesting — they’re going digital — signs that is. They’re all over the place. My local bank branch plays Bloomberg TV surrounded on the screen by Apps and streaming Wachovia mortgage, financial services and car loan services ads. A big grocery store chain […]

Who’s Integrating YOUR Local Starbucks?

I Still Love Retail But I Don’t Miss Retail

I remember my first December in the custom channel very clearly: 9-5 office hours, comfy chair in an office, and meetings with clients. And with the exception of being closed on Boxing Day and only half-day hours from Christmas to New Year’s Eve, it was business as usual and no different from any other month […]

HDMI Then And Now

Last month I had no idea that the banter on Twitter surrounding a CE Pro story about HDMI-related issues would touch off a minor flame war, and inspire Gary to write a very good blog post about the opportunities that HDMI affords to integrators. For my part, I took advantage of the discussion to Tweet a series of haikus about HDMI. In case you […]

It’s Better To Be Prepared Than Postpared

I’ve got a lot of aphorisms that I like to live by but the notion that “It’s Better To Be Prepared Than Postpared” is one of my favorites. Sometimes I take it too far, but when it comes to system design, I don’t think that’s possible. Related to that, I’m also inclined to believe that there’s no […]

Are You Gaming Yet?

Did you know the average buyer of a video game is 30 years old (or young, depending on how you look at it)? Sure, many of those purchases are for their kids, but, according to recent polls, over 70 percent aren’t – they’re for themselves. The gaming revolution is now, officially, bigger than the home […]

Are You Gaming Yet?

How Can You Not Be Used To Change In This Business?

As clichéd as it sounds, the one constant in CE is change. That’s why resistance to it always comes as a surprise. Recently a story of mine went online that dealt with sustainable architecture principles, with a special focus on Daylight Harvesting: programming a lighting control system to respond to daylight levels so as to maintain a […]

This Can’t Be True – Are We Really An Industry of Whiners?

A few minutes ago, I read Jason Knott’s “HDMI 1.4 Problems Are a ‘Pandemic” column in the online version of CEPro. In it, Jason eloquently describes the world of HDMI-whiners, even labeling it as pandemic, and leaves you with the feeling that HomeAV integrators hate HDMI. Is this true? Really? I find it amazing (and extremely ironic) that the reason they seem to […]

Nielsen’s Corporate Offices Lit Up By Arsenal Media with Digital Displays

Denys Lavigne of Arsenal Media has been telling me for a while now about a project his company was working on for The Nielsen Company’s executive offices in Connecticut. That project is now switched on, and Lavigne has passed along a link to a video case study that explains what was done and why. I like this for a […]

Think BIGGER: Think DSNs

Since 2000, I have developed 15 or so courses and keynotes designed specifically to motivate or move ProAV integrators towards continual profitability. Back in the late 1990‘s, I developed a course that, literally, turned box-houses into systems integrators. In 2000, I started presenting my course on selling and maintaining profitable, proactive service contracts and in the mid-2000’s […]

Does CTS Matter?

By Gary Kayye, CTS Almost two decades ago, InfoComm launched the commercial AV industry’s first certification designation, called CTS – Certified Technology Specialist. Although the program has unofficially been around for years, until now-InfoComm Executive Director & CEO, Randy Lemke, arrived from Northern Virginia Community College where he served as Director of the Extended Learning Institute, the program was used sparingly […]

Does CTS Matter?

Managing the Information Stream

It used to be called the Information Superhighway, but really, if information and news is central to your business, it’s more like trying to drink from a firehose. Like everything else work related, it helps to have a process. Here’s how I do it. I get something on the order of twenty industry-related newsletters a day […]

The Obligatory Blog Post About Google TV

Now that Sony has announced its new TVs that will incorporate Google TV, the concept is beginning to look less like vaporware and more like yet another entrant to the coming content wars. So I guess that means it’s time to start blogging about it, in anticipation for when it’s finally released and we can get our […]

Old People Are Irrelevant

As a kid, I was taught that I should respect old people as they have the knowledge gained from experience. At seven years old, I hadn’t a clue what that meant. But, I did it. I had to. Whenever I went over to my grandparent’s house, I ate whatever was served, I never complained that […]

Old People Are Irrelevant

Smartphone “Super” LCD-OLED Display Technology Shoot-Out iPhone 4 – Samsung Galaxy S – Motorola Droid – iPhone 3GS – Google Nexus One

Introduction and Series Overview A key element in the success of all smartphones and mobile devices is the quality and performance of their display. There have been lots of articles comparing various smartphone LCD and OLED displays and technologies, but almost all simply deliver imprecise off-the-cuff remarks like “the display is gorgeous” with very little in the […]

Smartphone “Super” LCD-OLED Display Technology Shoot-Out  iPhone 4 – Samsung Galaxy S – Motorola Droid – iPhone 3GS – Google Nexus One

It Doesn’t Matter What The Competition Is Doing

I was talking the other day with an integrator on the east coast of the US. Like a lot of conversations I have with people in the industry, there’s always some small talk about business conditions in our local markets. As I told him, in the past eighteen months, in Edmonton and Calgary pretty much […]

CEDIA 2010 – What a Show!

Well, well, this year’s CEDIA blew away everyone’s expectations, including mine. I was hoping for a show that might come close to the 2009 numbers, but not expecting it. I was hoping for a show with some major new innovations, but not expecting it. I was hoping for a show that buzzed with excitement about a potential […]

CEDIA 2010 – What a Show!

Nobody Is Excited About 3D

Reflecting on discussions I had on the topic of 3DTV at CEDIA Expo last week, a clear trend emerges: beyond the official pitches the exhibitors were giving during their booth tours, no one is really that keen on 3D. One bon mot that swept across Twitter last week was: “Too bad LED and 3D came out at the same […]

Blog Wi-Fi Woes

Last week I submitted a story for rAVe [Publications] that detailed the trend of AV installers moving away from using Wi-Fi unless absolutely necessary. The main reason cited was that the sheer density of Wi-Fi routers in both residences and commercial operations in urban spaces has led to wireless traffic jam, seriously inhibiting the ability of any of those devices to […]

Observations on Morning Two at CEDIA 2010

This show’s been nothing short of AWESOME! And, in case you’re not here, here’s some observations from the show floor this morning as the gates opened at 9am. Sony’s Blu-ray Secret: Check this out – these pics were taken this morning by rAVe Pubs and isn’t this foretelling: Blue-ray barely takes up a 6’x10′ space in their booth while on-line, streaming video content partners […]

Observations on Morning Two at CEDIA 2010

What Can You Do to Go Green Now?

As the GreenAV movement is under construction, there aren’t many GreenAV products, to be perfectly honest. You can search and search, but they’re coming slowly. The good news is they’re also coming more profitably. And, integrators are reporting to us that in the majority of their bids, when they specify GreenAV side-by-side with old AV, the Green stuff is winning more […]

What Can You Do to Go Green Now?

Five Booths You’ll Want to See at CEDIA

Most people see CEDIA Expo as the show of shows in the HomeAV market and make the time it takes to peruse the show, completely. The four-day event is the ultimate opportunity to see the new technologies and products that’ll make or break your year in high-end consumer electronics. And, best of all, it doesn’t have the huge crowds […]

Five Booths You’ll Want to See at CEDIA

Why Aren’t ProAV Integrators Doing DS Yet?

Wake up! Is anyone else [besides me] shocked that less than 20 percent of the DS market is being integrated by the ProAV channel? Do you realize that digital signage is LITERALLY the fastest-growing segment of the AV market? And, to top that off, it’s the largest segment of the “sell AV as a service” market outside […]

Why Aren’t ProAV Integrators Doing DS Yet?

Generation Y (And Z)

If you think it was tough getting old people in your company to adopt new technology, wait until you see how tough it will be for YOU to employ new talent. Generation Y is entering the workforce and they grew up not just playing video games, but mastering them on the first try. They never […]

Generation Y (And Z)

Should InfoComm and CEDIA Merge?

In my recent writing and speaking, I have discussed the convergence of the HomeAV and ProAV markets and how close they are moving to mirror each other. Now, let’s take a look at the two major industry associations (and their tradeshows) and how they may evolve over the next few years. In case you’ve been living under a rock, InfoComm is THE ProAV association […]

Should InfoComm and CEDIA Merge?

Best Buy Enters ProAV Integration Market

You think the economy was bad for business, wait til you have to compete with Best Buy in the ProAV integration space. That’s right! Best Buy has officially launched themselves into commercial AV design and integration and is actively seeking employees who want to get on the ground floor of their new ProAV strategy. Don’t believe me? Check it out for […]

Best Buy Enters ProAV Integration Market

Emerging Home Health AV Market?

By Bob Snyder and Gary Kayye, CTS A white box with a touch screen on the outside cover that lets heart patients make video calls with their clinicians may prove the basis for an emerging home health market. Yep, it’s true! Aetna released preliminary results of a joint study with Intel showing chronic heart failure patients […]

Emerging Home Health AV Market?

MCSi’s Alleged Mastermind, Mike Peppel, To Begin Trial Soon

One of the ProAV industry’s first “national” dealers was MCSi. After buying up more than 20 AV dealerships including Technical Industries of Atlanta, Fairview AFX from Tulsa, OK and DuoCom based in Canada,MCSi racked up sales of $686 million and was even a high-flying with a Fortune Magazine 100-Fastest-Growing-Company ranking in 2000. They had more than 150 offices and 2000 or so employees. MCSi went […]

MCSi’s Alleged Mastermind, Mike Peppel, To Begin Trial Soon

The CEDIA EXPO 2010 – Back to Suckville for the Dinner Buffet

If you’re a regular reader of rAVe, then you know that I despise Atlanta and think they did a terrible job hosting CEDIA in 2009 – although we did appreciate the city’s warning, for those of us staying in downtown hotels, not to veer too far from the hotel’s front door after 11 pm. Thanks. But, one must […]

The CEDIA EXPO 2010 – Back to Suckville for the Dinner Buffet

The iAd Network: Personal Digital Signage

We are about to witness the largest deployment of digital signage in history. That’s right – the largest deployment of digital signage technology, ever. How big? Well, well over 100 million (yes, million) people (translation: sets of eyeballs) will instantly be part of the world’s largest digital signage network tomorrow (July 1st) when Apple launches iAd on the […]

The iAd Network: Personal Digital Signage