cisco Archives - Advanced AV

Google Enters Commercial Video Conferencing: What You Should Know

Google has made a move to strengthen its already formidable standing in the world of business productivity tools by expanding its Hangout video conferencing feature. In a blog post from July 30, Google Vice President of Product Development Clay Bavor announced that Hangouts will now be open to users without a Google+ account. Hangouts is also going to be added to the existing suite of Google Apps for business, meaning Google is now covering Hangouts with around the clock support and a 99.9% guaranteed uptime. The fact that it offers commercial video conferencing means that other players in the video conferencing market must take notice and work on methods of staying competitive.

Google’s Move To Secure More Commercial Business

Google Apps is already one of the most well-known suites of productivity tools for businesses. Companies can use the Google Calendar to set appointments, Google Drive to share documents, and Google Talk to communicate with colleagues. Until this point, Google’s Hangout video conference feature was considered more of a casual tool that could be used by friends on Google+ to stay in touch with each other. Google’s recent announcement will force people to change the way that they think about Hangouts.

In addition to the news that Google offers commercial video conferencing through Hangouts, the company also announced that it would be improving its Chromebox, a hardware tool that can be used to hold meetings on almost any kind of device. Google has promised that they will soon roll out the ability to connect two displays to a single Chromebox as well as Chromebox support for calendar integration, which makes hosting meetings at home much easier.

What Google’s Announcement Means For The Industry

These recent reports that Google offers commercial video […]

By |August 12th, 2014|Blog|0 Comments

5 Reasons To Consider Video Content Management

In today’s fast pace world people are busy. We are more mobile than ever and due to this it can be increasingly hard to get all of the people you want in a meeting in a room at one time.

Over the years this has led to teleconferencing, web conferencing and telepresence as an alternative, but even to make those types of calls happen everyone still has to be available at the same time AND they need to be somewhere with good internet and ideally not too much noise.

Sometimes, the message being shared doesn’t require all to be in the same room or even available at the same time. In fact, sometimes a meeting is more of a one way communication and the important thing is the ability for the audience to see and hear the content within a certain period when it is convenient for all parties. This is why video content management is key to the future of business communication. Here are 5 more reasons why Video Content Management may be a great solution for your business or organization.

Convenience: No matter what the message is, with a video content management system your employees, customers or suppliers can visit and consume the content when it is convenient for them and the creator can make the video when it works for them. This allows people to spend their days out of meetings and busy producing, which is key for most businesses.
Training: It turns out most people are much more visual learners and this is why a video content system can really make a difference. Capture and record how-to videos or important educational content and employees can go back and view the videos on-demand. Also new employees […]

By |June 10th, 2014|Blog|0 Comments

AMX Acquired By Harman Group: Any Effect On AMX Users?

For more than 25 years Advanced AV has been a partner to a number of the most popular technologies in the AV, IT and collaboration markets.

From Cisco to Polycom and NEC to Christie, we have long been loyal and committed to working with great vendors who develop great products.

In the 1990’s one of the product categories that really took off for audiovisual spaces was the integrated room system. Whereas before, carts supported many technology spaces and projectors (mostly due to price), with the lower prices and higher quality of projectors came a robust interest in permanent technology installed into meeting and learning spaces.

As more and more devices became part of the system. Items such as VHS, DVD, computers and more, the mere number of remotes became cumbersome and this drove the requirement of something intelligent that could offer easy control of all of the devices in the room.

With this came the birth of the logic based control system for audiovisual systems.

Over the next 20 years two companies would dominate this market, the first being AMX, which was the first and the second being Crestron, which is now the biggest.  Later on other entrants came into the market, most notably Extron, but as a whole the control market has evolved with the IT market and now much of the room control has moved from analog and IR to primarily IP control.

For the most part the players in the control market have stayed the same, but this past week for the second time in less than 10 years the first player in the control game has been acquired.

Back in 2005, AMX was acquired and taken private for the first time by Duchossois Industries. The group was best […]

By |May 27th, 2014|Blog|0 Comments

Should Your Company Be Looking At Mobile Meetings?

Meetings are important for business. They can be used to planning strategy, selling to customers and educating employees; all of which are important to operating a successful organization.

On the other hand, anyone that has been in the business world long enough may just tell you those meetings can be a massive waste of time. This is often at least partially due to the logistics of meetings such as getting everyone in the office into a room for an extended period of time to stare at a slide deck and then discuss its meaning.

The meeting and the discussion that follows are often quite valuable, but when you take employees out of the field for extended periods of time what is being lost? Moreover, even if the meetings themselves are good (which is often an item for debate), have you ever thought about the time and energy being put into getting everyone in the same room at the same time?

Perhaps some of the time this level of in-person interaction is important, I would be willing to bet that much of the time it is not required and that a company could leverage technology to quickly mobilize the workforce to meet and then carry on with their work.

Are you aware of what is possible today for mobile employees?

In the past decade the proliferation of Internet has changed everything. High speed for both uploading and downloading have become lightning fast and widely available to just about anyone at a reasonable price.

On the mobile side 4G and LTE networks have given high-speed quality data for mobile devices riding the infrastructure designed for cell phones and smart devices. What this has also done is allowed for high-speed browsing, mobile work […]

By |April 30th, 2014|Blog|1 Comment

Understanding What You Have: Guide To Maximizing New Technology Spaces

Any time a meeting space is updated, refreshed or renovated there is a great feeling of new that comes along with it.

Just walking into the room everything looks better. Usually the old tables and chairs are gone and a fresh coat of paint accompanies the new surroundings in a way that just permeates “New”

The technology however, that is another story. New technology doesn’t only make a room feel updated and refreshed, but it can bring the room to life. Make it a permanent residence of more productive communication and collaboration.  After all it is productivity more than “Wow factor” that drives technology purchases.

If there is one problem that we see more than any other when it comes to new technology deployments, it is the lack of training and understanding of how to use them.

I can’t even tell you how many times we’ve walked into a room just loaded with the best audiovisual technology that the market has to offer only to find our clients unable to successful use the installed system.

While you may be thinking we are talking about non-technical people, we aren’t.  We’re talking about some high level technology experts with all of the state of the art goodies that have no idea how to use them.

Often we hear complaints about fellow integrators and the spotty work they do or how their stuff never worked, but upon further review (and even though we wish it was the case), more often than not it is just a lack of training and education provided by the said integrator that is leaving the space essentially useless for the owner.

This brings an important point to light. New technology is cool, but it isn’t really helpful if the best […]

By |April 22nd, 2014|Blog|0 Comments

Rooms Solutions,Cloud Infrastructure: Smart Telepresence

For years the biggest challenge for making video scalable for enterprise has been the infrastructure.

Over the past 10-15 years the price of the room-based codec has dropped every year making a high definition room system cost about the same as the projector or flat-panel that went along with it. In short this opened up the door to video in every room.  With desktop video solutions being offered by companies like Cisco, Polycom and Lifesize, this has taken vide from the board room to the bedroom and everywhere in between, but regardless of how inexpensive these systems have become the real challenge to making them work for most businesses and organizations remains in the data center.

In short, how does an organization safely and easily connect all of these devices so they can talk to one another over the network. One thing is for sure; you can’t just leave them unsecured because these devices become easy targets for intruders.

The answer always has and always will be in the infrastructure. However, the second you add infrastructure to the equation you are talking big investment. Additionally with the rapid innovation in video bridging and infrastructure technology, the idea of making a large investment in a specialized appliance becomes more and more daunting for many companies. So what is the answer for companies that have video but need the infrastructure for simplifying dialing outside the firewall and keeping the assets secure?

The Solution May Just Be In The Cloud

Look up, it’s a bird, it’s a plane…no, it is the cloud.

So everyone is talking about this whole cloud concept and if you are using Dropbox, Google apps or perhaps some enterprise CRM or ERP you too are experiencing cloud day in and […]

By |April 15th, 2014|Blog|2 Comments

Cloud: A Critical Part Of The Future Of System Integration

 Today’s post is by Michael Boettcher, CEO of Advanced AV. 

As a company that for what seems like an eternity has been installing hardware into technology driven spaces we have to some extent dreaded the rapid proliferation of technology that has driven new categories like Mobility, Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) and Software as a Service (Saas).

Although many of us use these technologies day in and day out (glancing at my iPAD), there is always a certain amount of discomfort that surfaces when a major change to the way we do business is introduced.

Perhaps you can consider a time or two when your business model has been changed due to some type of industry disruption. Maybe it is technology related or maybe in your industry it is something else. Some of the examples that come to mind are hybrid automobiles, computer aided graphics and online media as major business model shifts that have turned industries on their side.

For the audiovisual integration and collaboration industry our time is coming and as a business we have a couple of choices.  We can:

Let the change happen and hope that we can hang on doing things the way we always have.
See the change as an opportunity to provide greater service and newer technologies to our customers.

We Chose The Latter

It would actually be pretty odd for us to come out and write about this type of industry shift if we were going to go any other way, but I think any business leader can respect the process of exploring your options.

Last week I came across a photo on one of my LinkedIn pages that said the most dangerous phrase in business is “Because it is the way we have always done […]

By |April 8th, 2014|Blog|1 Comment

Google Enters Business Video Market – What Does It Mean?

A lot of people would think that when perhaps the world’s most recognizable brand launches a hardware based video conferencing product that will be affordable for just about every business on the planet that it would make the competition nervous.

Well for those that haven’t heard, just this past week Google announced the launch of its “Google Chrome for Business” HD telepresence solution. This supposedly plug and play solution is promising to deliver HD video to up to 15 simultaneous sights and it sells for all of $999.99. (For just the hardware Unit – No Installation)

As a technology integrator and a passionate provider of collaboration technology to business, schools, government and more, let’s just say for us, this news is terrific. Perhaps some of the best news we have heard in sometime.

If you find yourself asking why, don’t feel alone, when we first read the news there were immediate butterflies in our stomachs as we felt the potential implications of the Google jumping into our market, but then we thought about it a little more and realized that Google’s involvement into Video Telepresence isn’t a negative thing, it is a huge positive as it is the ultimate validation of what we are doing.

How many people out there are getting the big thumbs up from Google? By entering this market Google is saying video is the real deal and we couldn’t agree with them more.
 
Disruption Driving Better Business (Video)
 
We all know that business video leads to better business outcomes. With on average of 8x better comprehension than a typical voice call, the need for collaborative video solutions has arrived.

For sometime we have been talking at Advanced […]

By |March 20th, 2014|Blog|0 Comments

The Cloud – Collaborative Virtual Space

I had just passed my securities licensing exam and the company required our presence at a conference 200 miles away from our home office. Ten of us drove the two hundred miles from Philadelphia to Hartford to attend the three day meeting. Accommodations, meals, gas and other expenses added up to a good bit of money, even twenty years ago. One associate needed to catch a flight out of Philadelphia International Airport the day we were driving back. Our caravan of cars sped through flooded freeways to get our colleague to his plane on time. The experience was memorable but the expense of bringing people together in one place was only outpaced by the time lost out of the office. The lost productivity and the time away from the business of doing business had a rippling effect that lasted for days after the conference. There had to be a better way.

Two decades later, business communications has migrated through numerous technologies including conference-calling, video phones, video-conferencing and telepresence. Numerous advanced technologies have been developed to reduce the time and expense of distant meetings. Video Teleconferencing (VTC) has helped to bring multiple people in different locations together without those people leaving their local offices, classrooms or homes. Video Teleconferencing and Telepresence have evolved beyond early beginnings of massive investment, limited graphics, jittery motion and poor quality audio. Today’s systems include cloud-based solutions with multiple end-points including large venues, the desktop, smartphones and tablets.

Major providers are now beginning to reach beyond some of the constraints of “traditional” video teleconferencing. Today, clients are looking to their unified communication integrators like Advanced AV to design more collaborative environments across multiple, global locations. To that end, “Cloud Telepresence Systems” […]

By |January 25th, 2012|Blog|0 Comments

Eye Contact Makes Remote Meetings More Effective

Apple is once again featuring prominently in news headlines following the announcement of its new iPad 2. This latest must-have device is thinner, lighter, and faster, with increased battery life and a new “smart cover” that increases functionality.

But perhaps one of the most interesting attributes of the new iPad is the addition of Apple’s Facetime software to its built-in applications. This makes mobile video chatting more accessible in a larger format than previously available, with the iPad screen providing a near life-size representation of the human face.

While Facetime is a fairly rudimentary video communications platform, its increasing presence will mean that more and more people will be adapting to the idea of adding video to their voice communications. This is interesting not just from a technology standpoint, but also in terms of human behavior. Voice is a great indicator of mood and comprehension, but when you add the possibility for eye contact and observation of facial expressions the value of an exchange between participants is elevated significantly. Or, as Apple itself elaborates, “The big, beautiful iPad display is a great place for a face, because you can really see it. Not a smile or laugh goes unnoticed.”

Most presenters in business and education are well aware of the value of eye contact. But this important function of communication goes further than merely ensuring your audience is engaged. Eye contact can also make up for all manner of inhibitors to an effective meeting or collaboration. Specifically because, according to presentation skills consultant Debbie Bailey, “Good eye contact cuts physical distance in half, helps you connect with your audience on a personal level, and invites audience members to participate in your presentation.”

If eye contact can cut distance in […]

By |March 16th, 2011|Blog|0 Comments
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