Posts tagged Unified Communications

Register for AVI-SPL Collaboration Expo 2012 in Washington, D.C.

Discover the latest business and education communication solutions this May 9 at AVI-SPL’s Collaboration Expo 2012 in Washington, D.C. Attendees of this FREE event can see firsthand the communications solutions that organizations need in order to compete in a global economy, now and in the future. Leading manufacturers of video conferencing, Unified Communications and digital media solutions will be on hand to demonstrate their products. They’ll also provide educational seminars about the technologies that are helping businesses operate efficiently, save money and drive growth, along with an opportunity to earn continuing education credits.

Plus, it’s all free – entry, lunch, and a chance to win an iPad2.

Andrew W. Davis, cofounder of Wainhouse Research, will deliver an engaging keynote speech at the Expo, “Beyond ROI: Find Real Value in Collaboration.” During our event, Davis will discuss the technical and social implications of the voice-video-data convergence on the way businesses communicate and collaborate. An industry visionary, Davis offers an in-depth look into how IT professionals, line managers and senior executives can find an effective return on their investment.

Register Today!

Register for the May 9 Collaboration Expo event in Washington, D.C., and see the list of exhibitors and find out more about the educational seminars.

Each full-day conference is your opportunity to learn about the latest collaboration technologies, helping you make informed decisions on communication investments for your company.

Collaboration Expo 2012 BannerFollowing this stop in D.C., this FREE series of events will land in four more cities throughout the U.S.:

  • Chicago, IL – September 13
  • New York City, NY – September 25
  • Tampa, FL – October 18
  • Anaheim, CA – October 30

If you have any questions about any of our upcoming events, visit our Collaboration Expo 2012 FAQ page, email events@avispl.com or call 877-440-6205.

Andrew W. Davis of Wainhouse Talks Collaboration and Communication for Businesses

Andrew DavisIn advance of AVI-SPL’s upcoming Collaboration Expo 2012, I interviewed keynote speaker Andrew W. Davis, cofounder and senior partner at Wainhouse Research. He discussed the changing nature of communication for businesses, and what it’s like to be called an “industry visionary.”

  1. What is the value of the expo for attendees?
    The Collaboration Expo is a fantastic way for people to get up-to-date information on the latest conferencing and collaboration products and services.  AVI-SPL’s event pulls together several features and benefits, including a short, focused conference, an exhibit hall for real demos, and a chance to network with likeminded colleagues. Even better, most customers will be able to attend without the cost and burden of long-distance travel.
  2. What changes have you seen in the work environment that are worth noting as they relate to communication and collaboration?
    The most obvious change is the shift away from phone and email communications on the part of the younger work force and more use of mobile and social tools. You can’t help noticing that everyone today has a “follow me” link for Twitter, Facebook, etc. whether you are in high tech or low tech. It’s really amazing how things have changed so fast and so deeply. Mainstream enterprise communications today I would say is still driven by audio conferencing, but web is coming up fast. The issue here of course is that both of these technologies enable multitasking – doing other things while you are on the call. Video conferencing is enslaving in this respect – you have to pay attention. This is both a plus and a minus, depending on who you are and what your intention is in attending the meeting. Nevertheless, I expect video conferencing to explode as the application is “ported” to tablets and smartphones.
  3. What do enterprises need to do to adapt to those changes going forward?
    My advice is to be flexible and stay flexible. One way to do this is to shift the focus from buying solutions as hardware or CPE deployments to buying solutions as services. Managed services come to mind here, but cloud-based or hosted services as well. Enterprises should invest in conferencing and collaboration solutions to help them gain efficiencies all over the map; but doing so does not necessarily mean the customer has to own all the bits and pieces.
  4. What are some collaboration technology trends you’re watching for 2012?
    There are two separate but related things to watch, both video-centric. One is the incorporation of video capabilities into what we have known for the past few years as web conferencing. Citrix HD Faces is a case in point, and Cisco’s WebEx Jabber is another. The interesting angle here is that most people are comfortable with web conferencing; many already have accounts, and the video being incorporated today is not only high quality, but often free in the sense that there is no extra charge above the web conferencing costs. The second technology trend is one we’ve seen a lot of already – the move to mobile platforms like tablets and smartphones. These two developments could help video go mainstream; they will also change the nature of the industry for both vendors and channel partners.
  5. How important is AV/IT convergence in today’s workplace?
    It’s important for several reasons. One is that the convergence offers the potential to enable a whole new set of applications and solutions.  My supposition is that five years from now, many of the solutions you will be selling haven’t been invented yet.  The second reason is that the convergence will change the skill sets required to be successful in the industry – both for vendors and channel partners as well as for the customer’s internal support staff.
  6. Does technology drive change in the workspace, or are advancements in tools and systems more the result of pressures from within an organization?
    Sad to say, I believe technology drives change and not the other way around. To paraphrase Steve Jobs, end users don’t really know what they want or need.
  7. Let’s say it’s 2020 – what does a well-run organization or company, regardless of industry, look like and do well?
    For starters, the solutions we will be using in 2020 haven’t been invented yet. And the solutions will be wireless, whatever they are.  New capabilities change behavior in unpredictable ways. (Did you know ten years ago that you’d be shopping on the Internet for books, movies, music, clothing, and power tools?) And change is not always continuous. I think a well-run organization in 2020 will look very much the same as it does today from the outside, but from the inside it will be very different – with distributed information workers, less focus on working from the home office, less travel for workers, less commuting, more home-life balance. I also think we are more likely to be shaped by or constrained by external events than we are by technology – energy costs or shortages, global climate change, terrorism, economic shifts. I try to not get too depressed about these things, but you can’t help it if you read the papers.
  8. What are your daily industry must-reads?
    In the traditional media world I am a devotee of the Wall Street Journal and the Economist magazine. Online resources include NoJitter and TechCrunch and reuters.com.
  9. What is it about the technology industry today that excites you?
    You have to admit that the continuous changes is an effect that is both exciting and stressful. In our space — conferencing and collaboration — there are continuous improvements in the technology on one hand, and interesting battles going on in the politicial/technical/marketing arenas between the vendors. It’s a giant football match, with the size and shape of the football changing all the time.
  10. What’s it like to be called an “industry visionary?”
    It’s a crappy title, but somebody has to wear it. Remember though, being a visionary is a dangerous job, particularly when it involves predicting the future.

Register now for the April 18 Collaboration Expo 2012 event in Dallas to see the latest in collaboration and communication solutions from over 25 of the leading manufacturers. In addition to learning about the trends in digital media, video conferencing, Unified Communications and telepresence, you can attend Andrew Davis’s keynote address: “Beyond ROI: Finding Real Value in Collaboration.”

AVI-SPL Launches Collaboration Expo for 2012

AVI-SPL’s Collaboration Expo will make stops in six cities across the U.S. this year, showcasing communications solutions that today’s businesses need in order to compete in a global economy with a  mobile workforce. The leading manufacturers of video conferencing, unified communications and digital media solutions will be on hand to demonstrate their products and provide educational seminars in the technologies that are re-shaping the business communication landscape. This FREE event will land in the following cities throughout the U.S.

  • Dallas, TX – April 18
  • Washington D.C. – May 9
  • Chicago, IL – September 13
  • New York City, NY – September 25
  • Tampa, FL – October 18
  • Long Beach, CA – October 30

Each full-day conference is your opportunity to see how these systems work, so you can make an informed decision on the audio visual investments that will help your company compete and operate efficiently.

Each event begins with a keynote presentation on the value of video, voice and data convergence, and why the combination makes sense for your organization. In addition to networking with other professionals and visiting the exhibits, you can attend product demos and informative seminars that increase your savvy about the technologies that lead to operational efficiencies, save you money and drive growth.

Andrew W. Davis, cofounder of Wainhouse Research, will be the keynote speaker at a number of the Expo events. Wainhouse Research is a boutique analyst firm that concentrates on collaboration products and services, including audio, video, and web conferencing and unified communications.

Benefits of attending AVI-SPL’s Collaboration + Conference Expo 2012

  • Learn about the latest professional audio and video solutions and trends from leaders in the industry
  • See demonstrations of new audio and video technologies
  • Network with peers and industry professionals
  • Attend free informational seminars

If you have a question about any of our upcoming events, email us at events@avispl.com.

AVI-SPL Acquires Iformata Communications LLC

Leading audio video communications provider AVI-SPL announced today the acquisition of Iformata Communications LLC, a leading provider of video managed services. This acquisition includes the Iformata Video Network Operations Center (VNOC) business and the VNOC Symphony® management platform. AVI-SPL views this acquisition as a critical move in the company’s continuing drive to become the dominant player in the video communications solutions and services space.

“In 2009 we set forth on an initiative to grow our video communications business. In 2011 we succeeded in growing video related revenue to over $200 million and video is now included in over 50 percent of the projects we do,” said AVI-SPL CEO John Zettel. “With that growth, we recognized the importance of expanding our capabilities in the video services we provide our customers. Acquiring Iformata shows our commitment to expanding our video communications strategy with a strong managed services offering.” Click here to view Zettel’s video announcement of the acquisition.

“This acquisition is a major win for both AVI-SPL and Iformata,” reports Ira M. Weinstein, senior analyst and partner at Wainhouse Research. “This combines AVI-SPL’s strong A/V integration experience and 150+ strong, video-savvy, field sales force with Iformata’s robust, multi-tenant Symphony videoconferencing management system.

“The result is an immediately available, mature service offering from a well-known and trusted technology partner. Hosted video managed service offerings, like AVI-SPL’s Unify ME™, play a key role in helping enterprise organizations maximize the benefits they receive from their collaboration investments.”

Founded in 2004, Iformata has built a reputation as the leading innovator of VNOC tools and end-to-end automation services through its VNOC Symphony platform. Providing managed conferencing services to global enterprise firms, equipment manufacturers, and top-tier carriers and networks, Iformata’s 450 claim patent portfolio and platform has features for every aspect of managing an enterprise’s fleet of video systems, including call setup, intelligent framing, automated monitoring, event correlation, and call tear down – even for disparate immersive telepresence systems.

The addition of the Iformata VNOC service bureau, associated services and innovative technologies to AVI-SPL’s current Unify ME offering provides a more robust total managed services solution to customers. The enhanced services brought by Iformata is a strong addition to AVI-SPL’s portfolio, which currently includes cloud-based services, remote services and onsite services with long and short term Strategic Onsite Solutions and professional services.

“With the acquisition of Iformata, we become one of the only video solutions providers who can truly provide every aspect of the video communications experience.” said Mike Brandofino, AVI-SPL executive vice president of video and unified communications. “We think it is critical to be at the point of sale when selling services and the fact that we design, build and now provide VNOC managed services across any video platform, clearly differentiates us from anyone else in the space.”

The new operations and the associated employees will join AVI-SPL’s Support Services group under the leadership of AVI-SPL’s Executive Vice President of Video and Unified Communications Mike Brandofino.

For additional information, please contact UnifyME@avispl.com.

APi Case Study: A More Unified World of Communications

APi Group, Inc. serves as a holding company for nearly 40 independently managed companies with more than 150 locations. Headquartered in New Brighton, Minn., APi focuses on servicing the industrial sector, including specialty construction, fire systems, fabrication and distribution.

At three stories and 50,000 square feet, APi’s LEED gold certified headquarters includes a limestone exterior and an emphasis on natural light and expansive windows. “The APi Group needed a better way to effectively communicate with our geographically disperse companies and with our many vendors and suppliers,” says APi’s network manager, Brian Erickson. “Having superb audio/video conferencing technology was key to achieving this goal. In addition, APi is thoroughly committed to green-friendly practices to minimize our impact on the environment. Therefore it was very important to build technology that fit these criteria.”

From the moment visitors step into the lobby, they’re greeted with Panasonic’s 58-inch, 16:9 LCD monitor, which is showcased as a touch screen monitor for APi’s corporate Web page. They can easily “surf” around the site with the simple touch of their finger.

As another highlight of the integration, APi’s audio conferencing room features Polycom’s HDX 9002 high-definition (HD) codec. Additional audio support is provided in the form of four Atlas Sound ceiling speakers, as well as eight Sennheiser gooseneck microphones evenly dispersed throughout the conference room table. Panasonic’s 50-inch HD plasma displays complete the presentation environment. In each of the four standard conference rooms, meetings are enhanced through the use of Polycom’s SoundStation2 conference phones, as well as two additional 50-inch HD plasmas.

“We have been able to take advantage of more productive meetings by having the superior audio and video conferencing technology built into our facility,” says Erickson. “The comfortable meeting spaces, audio/video technology and acoustically-friendly spaces (i.e. no echo) help keep the participants focused and does not detract from the meeting itself.”

“Prior to the installation of videoconferencing technology, APi executives could only arrange to meet quarterly,” says Thornburgh. “Today, they’re able to have more meetings throughout the organization, with a lot less coordination efforts and expense required,” adds Thornburgh. At every level, APi board members will find that the new AV system is designed to provide maximum versatility, including networking capabilities.

“The most impressive technology is incorporated into this boardroom,” adds Erickson. “The sheer scale of the main video monitor as well as all the video screens and audio technology helps make this room the centerpiece of our corporate headquarters.” As one of the integration team’s largest boardroom installs, displays include a customized 165-inch HD 1080p Da-Lite rear projection screen, with images powered by an 8,000 lumens high-resolution Barco projector. Equipped with seating for up to 46 participants, the boardroom table is integrated with seven of Sharp’s 46-inch HD 1080p LCD flat panel displays.

Ready to Learn More?

To explore design/build opportunities for video communications within your organization, contact us today! You can reach an AVI-SPL sales rep by calling 800-282-6733, or by clicking here to request a quote.