This Week (In AV and IT)
A new series – I’ll be looking at news and developments in both AV and IT within the industry during the week.
Cisco Announces Intent to Acquire Acano (11/20)
Today, Cisco announced its intent to acquire Acano Limited, a privately held company based in London that provides collaboration infrastructure and conferencing software. Acano’s hardware and software includes gateways, and video and audio bridging technology that allows customers to connect video systems from multiple vendors across both cloud and hybrid environments. This acquisition will accelerate Cisco’s collaboration strategy to deliver video everywhere, providing the best collaboration experience across every endpoint, every screen, every workspace, and to every user.
It’s reported in the announcement that today, less than 10 percent of the conference rooms in the world are connected via video. Claiming that there is a massive market shift underway in collaboration – Cisco states that customers want the ability to easily connect from anywhere, from dedicated hardware endpoints to sharing video on a mobile phone. Cisco’s collaboration business is stated to already be seeing the impact of this trend, with 17 percent year-over-year growth in the first quarter of fiscal year 2016. With this, as well as a need to deliver solutions that will connect any system, regardless of vendor, at a scale that is dramatically higher than ever before – Cisco claims that Acano’s technology and expertise will enable them to accelerate development in the key areas of interoperability and scalability.
Read more here.
InfoComm Membership Elects 2016 Board, Leadership Search Committee Members (11/17)
InfoComm International, the industry trade organization, has announced election results for the 2016 InfoComm International Board of Directors and Leadership Search Committee (LSC). Julian Phillips, Executive Vice President, Whitlock, has been elected Secretary-Treasurer of the Board by InfoComm membership. InfoComm members also elected Jeff Day, CEO, Bluewater Technologies, and Kevin Kelly, President, Chief Operating Officer and Owner, Stampede, to the Board.
The LSC also appointed Ratnesh Javeri, CTS-D, Managing Director, Innovative Systems and Solutions Pvt. Ltd. to the Board of Directors. Zane Au, CTS-D, LEED AP, Shen Milsom & Wilke, was re-appointed to the Board. Alexis Bryant La Broi, Systems Consultant, Avitecture Inc., was elected by members to serve on InfoComm’s Leadership Search Committee.
Read more here.
Christie Plans Growth With Allure Global Solutions Acquisition (11/17)
Christie announced the acquisition of Allure Global Solutions, a provider of digital signage, point-of-sale and consumer engagement systems for venues including theaters, restaurants, arenas and theme parks. Allure Global Solutions is headquartered in Atlanta, and will operate as “Allure, a Christie company.” Terms of the deal were not announced.
“Christie and Allure have shared customers, most notably in the cinema market,” said Craig Sholder, executive vp business development and strategic planning for Christie. “Given the opportunities to provide a more comprehensive, digital out-of-home system to varied markets, the next step was self-evident. We are pleased to combine the consumer engagement, analytics, and integration solutions from Allure with Christie’s own array of products and services — most notably the offerings of the Christie Experiential Networks (which includes interactive video walls and immersive environments).”
Craig Chapin, CEO of Allure, echoed Sholder’s sentiments, noting that, “The synergies and opportunities this union provides are broad and deep, for both our current clients and our two companies. As we continue to grow our core verticals and expand our presence into others, our mutual offerings will provide exciting new engagement and technology solutions not only for cinema, but also for theme parks, cultural attractions, stadiums, restaurants, and many other clients.”
Read more here.
Vidyo and Mitel Expand HD Video Conferencing Partnership and Announce Integration of MiCollab (11/19)
Vidyo Inc., a leader in high-quality visual communications and collaboration, and Mitel® (NASDAQ:MITL) (TSX:MNW), a global leader in real-time business, cloud and mobile communications, today announced a global expansion of the companies’ partnership to deliver high-definition video conferencing capabilities to the enterprise. The new OEM agreement allows Mitel to leverage Vidyo’s APIs to embed multi-point video, audio and collaboration features inside various Mitel solutions.
The VidyoWorksTM platform is fully integrated into the newly released version of Mitel’s MiCollab, a real-time communications and collaboration solution to provide simple administration and an easy-to-use feature set to enhance the user experience. With Vidyo, MiCollab is now able to provide high-quality video conferencing from any mobile endpoint that is both flexible and scalable, streamlining the business processes to enable easy video conferencing across the organization and beyond.
“We are pleased to partner with Mitel on this expanded relationship to answer the demands of existing customers, sustain and grow new global deployments and help win market share in verticals like healthcare and financial services,” said Eran Westman, CEO, Vidyo. “Vidyo’s high quality software-based video conferencing infrastructure provides the absolute best possible experience to all enterprise customers looking for a real-time integrated video communication solution today.”
The VidyoWorks integration broadens Mitel partners’ addressable market as well as gives incentive to the channel to respond to increased user demand for high-quality video communication.
Read more here.
X2O Media Supports Marco Company Culture with Expansive Employee Photo Video Wall (11/17)
X2O Media, a Barco company, announced that the company’s award-winning X2O platform is powering an employee photo video wall in the St. Cloud, Minnesota headquarters of Marco, Inc., a leading technology services provider. With the visual communications platform providing simple content updating, the video wall has become a key element in supporting Marco’s culture as the company continues to experience rapid growth.
Marco began by traditionally hanging printed pictures of every employee — sorted by hire date — on a 30 foot by 10 foot wall. As the company grew to over 900 employees, the wall was no longer large enough to hold the pictures and the process of sorting printed photos became cumbersome and time-consuming. For this tradition to continue on, Marco required a solution that would accommodate the company’s growth and automate the sorting process. The answer was an employee photo video wall – as seen below, supported by X2O Media.
“Our employee photo video wall is an important part of Marco and has become a symbol of our culture that resonates with our employees, customers, and vendors,” said Jeff Gau, Marco CEO. “On tours of our corporate headquarters, it is always a highlight. With the X2O platform, it couldn’t be easier to update content on the displays and keep employee photos sorted.”
Read more here.
Barco streams and displays images of minimally invasive surgery in 4K (11/16)
Offering four times the resolution of HD, 4K imaging in the operating room is proving to offer significant benefits when performing a surgical procedure. In February of this year, Dr. Mathieu D’Hondt (AZ Groeninge hospital, Kortrijk) performed Belgium’s first liver laparoscopy in 4K using Barco’s display technology. “The resolution and level of detail enabled by 4K technology is truly amazing! Our original HD screens already offered excellent image quality, but with the 4K display, you get to see details you wouldn’t have seen before. Depth perception is better too – and contrast and differences in color are clearer. It’s as good as an open surgery,” Dr. D’Hondt concluded.
Johan Stockman, Barco’s VP Strategic Marketing for Surgical Imaging, confirms: “With minimally invasive surgery, surgeons are dependent on video technology to make the right decisions. When they can rely on 4K quality, meaning more detail-rich, color-correct images for real-life presentation of the patient anatomy, this may contribute to the improvement of patient safety and clinical outcomes.”
Read more here.
Biamp Systems Announces Rebranding to Mark 40th Anniversary Milestone (11/17)
Biamp Systems, a leading provider of innovative, networked media systems, has announced that in celebration of the company’s 40-year landmark, it has introduced a refresh of the Biamp® brand. Simple, elegant, and modest, the new logo echoes the company’s vision that focusing on the needs of the customer is still a main driver for market-leading innovation.
“For almost forty years, Biamp has been in the business of creating useful, reliable, and great-sounding audio products for our customers,” said Steve Metzger, president and CEO, Biamp Systems. “In line with the upcoming celebration of our fortieth anniversary and with an eye to the future, we’re giving new life to the look of our logo. I’m very pleased with how it reflects the Biamp brand as a respectful nod to our heritage, and a contemporary image for the future.”
Biamp’s rebranding effort will highlight its increased emphasis and focus on the user experience, as specifically seen in their most recent announcements around unified communication and collaboration. Whether it’s a public address system in a busy transportation locale or conferencing capabilities for colleagues around the globe, Biamp remains committed to putting the customer’s needs at the center of its product philosophy.
Read more here.
Wainhouse Research Evaluates Zoom (11/17)
Zoom reported this week that independent market research firm Wainhouse Research gave Zoom Video Conferencing and Zoom Rooms a thorough evaluation and according to Priscilla Barolo, Zoom’s Marketing Manager: “We knew we could stand the close scrutiny!”
Overall, the review was considered by Zoom to be very positive, with Wainhouse Research noting, “Mostly we like the fact that Zoom calls always work — no matter what. From the office. From home. From the hotel. From the airport. From the coffee shop.”
And according to Wainhouse: “Despite our best efforts, it was hard to break Zoom…While nothing is perfect, Zoom is not that far off.”
Zoom encourages you to check out the complete evaluation.
Read more here.
VuWall2 software demo at Milipol Paris 2015 (11/17-20)
VuWall2 is trusted by organizations worldwide who rely on networked visualization systems that can manage complex data from multiple sources in real-time. See the video on Facebook.