On the Circuit
Jun 11, 2012 11:30 AM, By Cynthia Wisehart
Looking at the new exhibitors at InfoComm, I see some definite areas of interest: flexible displays, videoconferencing, and Corning Gorilla Glass, to name a few.
First-time exhibitor NanoLumens has generated buzz with its flexible displays and has been aggressively raising its profile all year. I saw them at Digital Signage Expo, NAB, and the Almo E4 AV Tour in California, and rumor is that InfoComm will see the release of a higher resolution version of the company’s displays.
Among the larger of the new exhibitors, Manhattan-based Savant Systems has been well known for it’s Apple-friendly control solutions in the residential space since 2005; I’ve seen them at CEDIA for several years. The company now seems focused on building its commercial segment, which currently accounts for about 20 percent to 30 percent of its business. Last year, the company opened a 5,000-square-foot commercial showroom in Manhattan and have taken a 400-square-foot booth at InfoComm. It will be interesting to see how Savant brings its understanding of the Apple ecosystem into our world, where Apple (and Apple-esque) is increasingly relevant, especially on the bring-your-own-device (BYOD) front.
When I see Robe Lighting on the InfoComm roster for the first time, it tells me that the convergence of video and lighting that Robe has been championing over the years at shows like PLASA is ratcheting up. The Czech Republic-based company is a long-standing leader in touring gear; those are the high-profile applications that most often cross my desk. But they also hold a presence in installed applications, especially themed environments.
DirectTV brings its DirectTV for Business brand to the show and makes the case against cord cutting. Another big brand, Philips debuts with a new series of touchpanels via its MMD division. These are important from a trend standpoint because of the dual-touch and multi-touch technology involved. Finally, among the biggest new exhibitors, semiconductor company SiliconCore Technology comes out from behind the screen of its big customers—Sony, Sharp, Sanyo, Opticis/Samsung—and will show its LED and laser diode driver (LDD) technologies and the DVD and panel products that use them.
Among the smaller new exhibitors, we see three big brands: Corning brings its Gorilla Glass to the show floor, computer chip maker AMD brings its Eyefinity multi-display technologies, and British Telecom dips its toe with its conferencing division. Also in the videoconferencing front, check out two ends of the spectrum: global ICT provider Huawei takes a small booth to expand past the borders of its telecom world and Blue Jeans Network represents the trend in inexpensive online, multi-device videoconferencing. These tiny booths are sure to add disproportionally to the debate about how pro AV and videoconferencing should come together.
Finally, a quick note of the expanded exhibitors this year: In addition to Sony, Sharp, and Panasonic, we see Middle Atlantic, Vaddio, Planar, Blackmagic and AVAD going big, as well as more ambitious presentations from Prysm, Vivitek, Aurora, Ricoh, Black Diamond Video, Universal Remote Control, InFocus, Allen & Heath, and Behringer.
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