There's no doubt that the audio visual industry has proven its ability to survive and thrive in trying times. Global events have facilitated the rapid evolution of audio visual technologies, and these only continue to advance.
As the new year gets underway, you will notice an increase in the use of automation, touchless technologies, and remote audio visual monitoring systems. In addition, organizations will continue to implement hybrid work models in which communication occurs via video conferencing. Industries in various sectors will also have increased access to virtual and augmented reality technologies in 2022, which will forever change how people interact with the world around them.
In light of these technological advancements, organizations must adapt to remain competitive. It is paramount for organizations in all industries to work with audio visual integration specialists capable of choosing the best technologies for your organization's ongoing needs. If you’re wondering what advancements are available to revolutionize your business, here are some emerging AV trends to watch in 2022.
1. Touchless Environments and Building Automation
Following the throes of COVID-19, it appears that touchless building controls are here to stay. In the beginning, smart buildings primarily focused on creating more efficient infrastructure and environmentally sustainable facilities. However, the onset of the pandemic encouraged the widespread implementation of touchless technology, revolutionizing the way people engage with their environment. These safe, sanitary, and user-friendly technologies are now becoming staples of a larger trend of modernization — the growing shift toward smart building models.
Simply put, a smart building is a building designed with an infrastructure that feeds data into a computer system. From there, the information is used to automatically adjust the building’s operations according to the occupants' needs. These features can include room scheduling, space utilization, and geolocation.
Smart buildings are the key to making returning to the office more enticing to employees. With the enhanced capabilities that smart buildings offer, employees will know that they are safe in the workplace. For instance, smart buildings can utilize sensors to ensure that occupancy levels remain reasonable, while touchless technology and enhanced digital signage will reduce person-to-person contact. In addition, improved ventilation and air conditioning systems can purify and filter the air, which reduces the spread of viruses.
2. Hybrid Work Models and Video Conferencing
Although some employees are returning to the office, it is doubtful that society will return to an entirely on-site work environment. Even for businesses that cannot accommodate a fully remote approach, hybrid work models are becoming an increasingly common compromise. With this approach, business owners can reap the collaborative benefits of working with team members in-person while experiencing the work-life balance of working remotely. Furthermore, workplaces that allow employees to exercise the freedom of choice will benefit significantly from increased productivity and employee satisfaction. The hybrid work model also reduces employees' stress levels, which helps prevent burnout from occurring.
However, business owners must ensure that their team members have access to effective video conferencing technology to complete tasks with maximum efficiency. When employees communicate primarily through instant messaging and email, it can be challenging to discern the tone of a message or nuances in body language. Advanced video conferencing technology solutions minimize these issues and strengthen the bond between employees. Workplaces with video conferencing capabilities also enhance the collaborative experience for remote workers because it is possible for employees to share screens, files, and other important documents easily.
To facilitate the need for improved communication among hybrid and remote workers across large distances, corporate workplaces and educational institutions can also benefit from the power of unified communication solutions, complete with a combination of deep integration and high-quality audio visual technology. With unified communication capabilities, users can communicate using a single platform rather than separate email, video conferencing, and chat programs. The addition of deep integration ensures that users can share ideas by switching seamlessly from different devices as needed. Lastly, the implementation of high-quality audio and video ensures that information is shared without interruption.
3. Remote Monitoring and Maintenance for AV Systems
Business owners are always interested in technology advancements that can reduce overhead costs while remaining competitive. However, it is unrealistic for most companies to employ an internal team of AV specialists to support multiple audio visual applications and installations adequately. Increasingly in 2022, companies can implement remote monitoring and maintenance for audio visual systems to support the advancement of technology. Whether your organization is expansive or small, remote audio visual support teams can significantly reduce operating costs for your business.
Essentially, remote monitoring systems are capable of providing real-time feedback without the need of a dedicated in-house AV tech. Expert technicians and helpdesk support teams leverage their knowledge to troubleshoot problems and improve your organization's resolution rate at a single point of contact. As a result, the number of calls that support technicians receive is reduced, along with the amount of downtime that users experience.
Remote monitoring systems and maintenance also provide expert support technicians who can keep your AV systems running at peak performance and prevent issues before they begin. For instance, when a device needs maintenance, audio visual support technicians can receive a notification immediately and remedy the issue before it causes significant disruption to users. If your organization would benefit from decreased operating costs and an improved maintenance strategy, consider discussing possible solutions with audio visual integration specialists who can help you choose the option that best suits your needs.
4. Virtual and Augmented Reality
Although virtual and augmented reality first entered the public consciousness via video games or social media filters, they are now infiltrating every aspect of our lives. Given the rapid evolution of technology, it is inevitable that these advancements will impact the audio visual industry. For instance, reports from TechCrunch state that companies specializing in the development of VR and AR technologies are noticing an increase in interest from educational institutions wishing to create an enhanced learning experience. Within the healthcare sector, VR solutions are assisting healthcare professionals with socializing medically isolated patients.
Virtual reality has been in development within the audio visual industry for many years. In 2022, virtual reality is becoming mainstream. The prime benefit of virtual reality is that it allows individuals to experience complete immersion within a digital environment, engaging each user's physical senses in a virtual context. Virtual reality technology is so vivid that it can stimulate a user's sense of touch, smell, hearing, and sight.
Akin to virtual reality is augmented reality, which alters a user's experience of their real-world environment using computer-generated sensory input. When users engage with augmented reality technology, they can view additional GPS data, graphics, or video. Although some people are hesitant to utilize this technology, it can help considerably by improving business processes. In 2022, it will become more common for employees to use AR technology for in-building navigation and object recognition in security.
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