The speed at which new technologies are entering our lives is exponential. Almost as fast as you wrap your arms around one thing, the next thing has come. When it comes to the business opportunities that stem from technologies such as business analytics, mobility, artificial intelligence (AI) driven automation, SaaS and cloud, it’s best not to not to let them slip by.
So you have to look forward, but you also have to be in the moment enough to capitalize on the trends right before your eyes. And for integrators there are four right now.
This one really comes in two flavors; analytics for running your business and analytics to help customers run their business. The opportunity nonetheless is massive. Integrators need to do better with analytics to understand their customers shopping journey (especially online) and how their customers are using the equipment and solutions that are being sold to them.
Sure, there has been some gossip about analytics for video conferencing, but have we really started tracking and understanding how our customers are making the most of their investments? Industries that are booming do this as a matter of habit. When a customer drops a million or a hundred thousand dollars on new technology, it is invaluable to them to understand that it creates value for their organization.
This one simply hasn’t been capitalized by traditional integrators, but the point here is really simple. People want to do everything on their mobile. We are more concerned with recharging our phones than sleeping (not everyone, but many), because our mobile battery life is more important than our own.
People want to watch content, manage devices, read, write, search and basically live interdependently with their mobile devices with full mobility themselves. If the solutions being sold still require or are focused on the physical space and not mobility then a massive opportunity is being missed.
AI Driven Automation
This one follows up on the last one….If we aren’t interacting with our mobile device, then we are now wanting to chat with our devices. Siri got a lot of us started, but Alexa has taken over.
Companies in the collaboration space have already started looking at voice activated solutions that can control rooms, devices, content and meeting information. This one is still in its early days, but it will be increasingly important that integrators get on board with this trend.
SaaS and Cloud
This one has been lingering as an opportunity for a while now, but I still don’t feel like it has become the bedrock of AV integrators that it needs to be. People are far more comfortable consuming cloud and SaaS based solutions than really anything else.
The world is primed for solutions that allow them to have Alexa control their rooms, from their mobile devices, via the public cloud, all the while gaining endless amounts of data on who is using what.
For everyone that uses room based technology there are hundreds if not thousands using software based versions. However, the software sale is different than the hardware and integrators have been resistant to get on board. The wait is over and tech needs to be sold in consumable ways that match how companies are buying CRM, Voice and Analytics solutions.
As much as things change, so much stays the same. Considering the differences in how we consume information, the presentation/conference/class room hasn’t changed nearly that much. Is that from a lack of understanding of what is possible? I suggest not, rather it is from a lack of innovation in the offerings because change isn’t comfortable.
The good news is, the world is primed for solutions that allow them to have Alexa control their rooms, from their mobile devices, via the public cloud, all the while gaining endless amounts of data on who is using what, and how. Technology has the opportunity to be an integrator’s biggest friend or worst enemy, and each integrator will soon make that choice.
Those who do, will certainly be best positioned to lead the industry’s revolution.