Spotlight on InfoComm


Will InfoComm 2017 Hasten Rise of AV-over-IP, Death of the Matrix Switch?

AV-over-IP standard alliance SDVoE and its members are predicting the death of the matrix switch as they prepare for InfoComm 2017. Is this a sensational claim or an accurate market perception?

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Software Defined Video over Ethernet (SDVoE) president Justin Kennington doesn’t mince words in “The Death of the Matrix Switch" as he systematically makes his case for why matrix switches ought to be out and why the integration community ought to embrace AV over IP.

Mark Twain is credited with having said that reports of his death are greatly exaggerated. As we approach InfoComm 2017, however, many matrix switch manufacturers might want to borrow that sentiment amid some pretty blunt predictions of the death of the matrix switch as AV-over-IP gains traction.

Software Defined Video over Ethernet (SDVoE), a standard for distributing AV over Ethernet which launched just prior to Integrated Systems Europe 2017 and continues to add to its manufacturer member roster, doesn’t mince words in a just-released video titled, “The Death of the Matrix Switch.”

In the video Justin Kennington, president of the SDVoE Alliance, sit back in a chair and systematically makes his case for why matrix switches ought to be out and why the integration community ought to embrace AV over IP.

“I’m here to tell you that the matrix switch is dead,” begins Kennington, strategic and technical marketing director at AptoVision, a founding SDVoE member.

Kennington argues that  “our industry stands at the precipitous of a new transition” from distributing data using matrix switches to advanced AV over IP solutions. He also calls out the commercial AV integration space as “something of a holdout” in the broader community when it comes to embracing AV over IP.

The Death of the Matrix Switch” video by SDVoE comes on the heels of a webinar hosted on CI (archived here) in which sponsor ZeeVee, another SDVoE member, outlined “How to Thrive in a Post-Matrix-Switching Era.”

ZeeVee executives spent an hour making a case for AV over IP distribution touching upon:

  • AV over IP is easier and quicker to deploy, creating productivity and efficiency benefit
  • AV over IP creates opportunities to win high-end jobs
  • AV over IP positions companies’ as innovative, leading edge with understanding the new distribution technologies
  • By offering AV over IP integrators have a chance to win business that has been going to matrix switches
  • Integration firms will benefit from AV over IP because more of their customers have content to distribute
  • Integration firms will benefit from AV over IP because more of their customers are open to AV over IP
  • Integration firms will benefit from AV over IP because their labor force to efficiently tackle more projects.

The timing of this AV-over-IP buzz sparked by SDVoE members is purposeful. It’s already clear that AV-over-IP will be a major theme of Infocomm 2017.

That, however, is a different thing than the “death of the matrix switcher.” It will be interesting to see how this all shakes out at InfoComm 2017.

What are your thoughts?