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AV Week Recap: Improving Trade Shows, Recruiting Next-Gen Integrators

Weekly panel discussion also touches on how CCS Presentation Systems earned CI Integrator of the Year honors, whether an Apple display may become a reality and more.

CI Staff

Why did Apple recently post, then remove, a press release about the technology giant’s plans to release a 4K Sharp display? Could this finally mean Apple will get into the display business after years of talking about it?

Although the panelists on AV Week episode 121, “Padded Floors and Walls,” remained skeptical after being too often burned, there’s a flicker of hope in the possibility, says Dawn Meade of Net-AV, a panelist along with Dave Pedigo of CEDIA and CI editor-at-large Craig MacCormack.

“They can do worse than partnering with an established brand,” says Meade. Pedigo noted Apple’s high standards in previous products, along with high price tag to go with them, pointing out the third-generation iPad had a higher resolution than 1080p displays.

“That shows me they’re serious,” he says.

That doesn’t necessarily mean there will be more Apple products in commercial spaces, since many products built for the home don’t translate well in commercial spaces, says MacCormack.

The panel also discussed an article in CI’s sister publication, CE Pro, on the actual cost of warranties. Meade plans to ask her boss about Steve Firszt’s tip of sending zeroed-out invoices to customers to show them the value of the warranty, while Pedigo says an end-of-the-year statement could prove to be “a valuable marketing tool.” He’s seen “a slow warmup” to warranties on the residential side.

“A lot of times customers think the warranties are free but that’s not the case,” says MacCormack.

MacCormack explained how CCS Presentation Systems earned the 2013 Integrator of the Year honors, talking about the unique business model started by founder John Godbout in Arizona and now spreading across the U.S.

Watch AV Week episode 121, “Padded Floors and Walls”

When it comes to improving trade shows, Pedigo sees AV as “a rapidly evolving industry” and says trade shows often feel pressure from people’s increasing reliance on the Internet. CEDIA offers a Future Technology Pavilion that looks five years ahead, he says, but his priorities at most shows are networking and training and education.

Meade argued for extending big shows like Integrated Systems Europe and InfoComm 2014 for another day, saying, “It takes every day the show is open to just see the booths and that’s without networking and without taking any classes.” Pedigo and Meade agreed with host Tim Albright that it’s important to find small companies that could emerge as future industry players among the crowd.

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