Whether it is cabling, audio visual, or video conferencing, it is common for a client to ask, “can you make sure it is future-proof?”
This comes from the fear of future expense/s and the inconvenience if the equipment or cabling needs to be replaced in an unreasonably short time frame. Perhaps, it also comes from a previous bad experience. Whatever the reason, it is significant enough for the question to be asked.
Is it reasonable for clients to expect that Audio Visual (AV) professionals have a crystal ball and can see the future product of the manufacturers, the direction of the industry, and how to protect their investment?
To have a two-way bet, it is a yes and a no.
What might affect the usability and the value to the client of their investment? Let’s use the average lease timeframe for a larger client in Australia which is eight to ten years, according to DLA Piper.
Things that could affect cabling, audio visual, or video conferencing future-proofing:
- Newer and more feature rich equipment is coming on the market. Technology is ever changing and ever evolving – nothing is going to stay the same. This creates an opportunity for an amazing future as technology is the driving force behind everything in today’s world, in all industries, and is essential to success.
- An item(s) or equipment is being EOL (End of Life) and the firmware will not be updated and the support withdrawn. To meet the demands of the ever evolving technology, equipment and firmware are upgraded to newer and advanced versions on an ongoing basis. Replacing EOL equipment and firmware can ensure better safety and stability across systems.
- The cabling standards i.e. Cat 5, 6, 7. Compliance to cabling standards is a must to deliver quality in cabling installations, promote safety, and ensure network integrity.
- A higher resolution comes along i.e. HS, UHD, 4k, 8k. As streaming technology continues to improve, high resolution video quality becomes a standard. High resolution is essential to promote the client’s brand and also provide the most realistic experience possible during a video conference to help forge more trust and work together more cohesively.
- The video conferencing software solution updates and no longer supports the installed video conferencing hardware. For instance, Zoom video conferencing or MS Teams rule out the existing Logitech or Poly video conferencing equipment;
- The needs of the client or the business change. Businesses also have to evolve to meet their respective clients’ needs and compete in their industries. Keeping up with the change, speed, and capacity also impacts future-proofing.
Looking at this list, an AV professional should know what’s in the pipeline. The manufacturers telegraph it and a specialist will look for new technology. They will also have a visibility of EOL products at least a few months ahead. It is not in the manufacturers’ interest to broadcast EOL much more that 3 months ahead. However, the other points are not within any AV professionals’ control. No one can stop technology advancing.
So, when you ask your integrator to future-proof your solution, be aware that you are participating in the myth that they can.
Fast Track Communications provides a range of enterprise audio visual and video conferencing solution designed to meet your business needs and budgets; and, we love what we do!
You’ll always get our honest opinion, and we are open and transparent in our business dealings. There is a good reason our core customers have been with us for over a decade. Let us engage with you on a project. You’ll love us. Fill out the form here and contact us today. As always, we are here to help!