Even the best audio and visual products will be rendered obsolete eventually, so companies should plan to make periodic upgrades to their AV technology. These upgrade cycles are necessary for improving system performance and functionality, so they shouldn’t be put off. When upgrades are delayed, it’s often because there’s no one around to research and select the proper technology.
This is just one reason that partnering with an AV integrator is vital. Reputable AV integrators want to establish a long term relationship with the clients they work with, and it’s a win for both sides. With an integrator overseeing the performance and maintenance of the system, any needed upgrades can be handled promptly, possibly avoiding down time.
When is it time to consider replacement of audio visual products?
While there are telltale signs that replacement is needed, like system slowdowns or a dip in reliability, AV integrators would prefer to never get to that point. That’s why AV integrators recommend their clients plan for regular upgrade cycles, as this protects against performance issues that come with system age.
The question is how often should companies plan for upgrade cycles? The typical upgrade cycle is about every seven years, but there is a lot of variance depending on the type of equipment, how often it’s used and the environment it’s installed in. AV equipment that’s installed outside, for example, will likely need to be switched out more often.
Some technology needs to be upgraded more often and some can last many years before replacement should be considered. Video conferencing codecs, for example, should be switched out every four years or so, while LED displays typically last for a decade or more. AV integrators consider the equipment’s lifespan as well as the expected boost in value new technology would offer when planning an upgrade cycle.
Selecting the Right Audio and Visual Products
Upgrade cycles are critical moments for a business because there’s an opportunity to change things up. For instance, many companies are making the transition to video conferencing or reorganizing their meeting rooms for more effective collaboration.
What kind of audio and visual products are needed when making a transition like this?
Many businesses are prioritizing huddle rooms, and they are among the most popular trends in AV because companies are rapidly moving away from standard meeting rooms. Small meeting spaces that can fit four or five people are well-liked among employees because they encourage participation and allow for quick, impromptu meetings. Also, companies can fit several huddle rooms in the space that a single standard meeting room would occupy, improving availability and efficiency.
In this example, each huddle room would require a digital display, a video conferencing codec and a camera to capture the meeting’s participants during a video conferencing session.
There’s a lot of displays, codecs and cameras to choose from, though, so how can companies make the right decision for their needs?
Let an Integrator Help with the Tough Decisions
If it’s time to upgrade or refocus the company’s AV strategy, an integrator should be responsible for selecting the right equipment and ensuring it is installed and configured properly. A business’s AV needs frequently change between upgrade cycles, and an integrator strives to understand these needs before assessing potential solutions.
Here’s a few more reasons why it makes sense to trust an integrator in this process:
1. Integrators are familiar with the industry’s offerings – Reputable integrators work with reputable manufacturers, and these manufacturers may have dozens of products worth considering. The differences between these products may be subtle or difficult to understand for anyone other than an integrator. In this instance, an AV expert would be helpful to have on hand.
2. Integrators know which audio visual products are a good fit – It’s tempting to select AV equipment based on a list of features, but integrators dig deeper than that. A feature-laden piece of technology may offer impressive functionality, but it may not be compatible with the company’s other technologies. AV integrators are experts on intercompatibility and keep this in mind when selecting products. An integrator’s job is to integrate new AV technology into existing infrastructure, and that means ensuring every piece works together. The result is a system that functions like it should, every time.
3. Integrators know how to support the equipment after installation – When a company partners with an AV integrator, the integrator takes responsibility for their client’s AV assets. This includes configuring the equipment and maintaining it, as well as providing training to anyone who needs it. With an integrator in charge, downtime is minimized and proactive measures can be taken to ensure people utilize the new technology. As early adoption is critical in getting people to use AV equipment, those proactive measures may be the difference in ensuring a company gets a good return on their AV investment.
Technology never sits still, and companies that update their technology regularly have a competitive advantage. A business can only leverage that advantage if they choose the right audio and visual products, configure them and install them properly. That’s what an AV integrator does, which means businesses need integrators if they are going to get the most from their AV solutions.