Business has always moved quickly. Since their inception, boardrooms and trading floors have drawn bright, engaged people restless for the next challenge.
As technology matches the pace of the rest of the world to that of business, financial and economic spaces find value in cutting-edge tech tools. Professionals occupying boardrooms, analysts’ offices, and trading floors can leverage AV over IP and its capabilities for richer insights, better decision making and clearer economic analysis in real time.
Here, we look at the benefits and opportunities that an AV over IP installation can provide for financial professionals — and how integrators can communicate these positives to installation decision makers.
How Business and Finance Are Embracing AV Over IP
Fintech, short for “financial technology,” encompasses a broad range of technological innovations in the financial sector, from computer technology used in bank recordkeeping to online investments and even digital currencies, says Bernard Marr at Forbes.
Fintech is no longer a niche realm; 33 percent of financial customers use multiple fintech services in their daily lives, according to Investopedia. And investment from financial firms into such technologies has exploded in recent years. An Accenture report found that businesses worldwide invested $12 billion in fintech in 2014.
Meanwhile, the AV over IP market is booming, as well. According to Robert Archer at Commercial Integrator, market sales of AV over IP products rose 130 percent in 2017 and are projected to continue increasing. The parallel rise in business’s interest in fintech and a macro-level willingness to embrace AV over IP provides fertile ground for integrators to partner with executives, financial analysts, traders and other financial professionals.
Talking Fintech: How Integrators Can Benefit Business (and How to Communicate It)
As one Alpha Video blog post notes, audiovisual tools are commonplace in the business world. Conferencing equipment, video calling, streaming video, CCTVs and remote diagnostic tools have become standard tools in the business arsenal. Without access to these tools, many businesses find it difficult to carry out day to day business or to land their most important clients.
Since business leaders are already familiar with the benefits of many of these tools, they’re open to the idea of their continued use — but they may need an integrator’s help to understand why upgrading or updating an audiovisual system to AV over IP is in their best interests. Integrators can help make their case by focusing on the following benefits and opportunities.
Ease of Installation and Scalability
One significant benefit AV over IP provides versus its predecessors is its ease of installation. As Matrox notes, the system’s reliance on an existing or updated Ethernet infrastructure means that any number of video, audio, or other data formats can be sent along the same CAT5 or CAT6 network cables. The days of closets stuffed with dedicated cables for each piece of equipment in the room are in the past.
Similarly, the use of existing network switches helps to lower cost and complexity for businesses and for integrators who provide ongoing customer support. And because many business venues already have Ethernet cabling in place, installation can often be carried out with minimal or no disruption of ongoing business.
The scalability of an AV over IP setup is a major selling point for businesses that plan for significant growth, but that must also anticipate occasional slowdowns. As a result, Lightware USA focuses on scalability in a handout for prospective clients, noting that while standard AV is often limited to 128 devices, AV over IP allows unlimited devices to connect — and to use existing network switches at lower costs.
Matching Customer and Client Preferences
Consumers, clients and end-users continue to embrace AV over IP options, with more members of these groups stating a strong preference for IP-based tools every year, according to Anthony Brennan of Futuresource Consulting.
As cloud computing and the Internet of Things (IoT) continue to appear in every corner of daily existence, businesses that make their communications and connections to these tools seamless stand a better chance of attracting and keeping customers and clients.
Consumers aren’t the only ones with strong preferences, either. The Audiovisual and Integrated Experience Association (AVIXA)’s 2017 AV Industry Outlook and Trends Analysis (IOTA) Global Summary found that seamless AV and Internet-based technological solutions were preferred throughout a wide range of businesses and industries, including by traders, financial analysts and experts, and business executives. Top growth areas included security ($14.7 billion in 2016) and AV capture and production ($22.9 billion) — two tools that help financial businesses carry out day to day tasks whether or not these directly benefit consumers.
Lack of Latency
Whether the goal is to share crucial financial analyses, hold an international video conference in real time or execute a perfectly timed trade, the tech system supporting the task must respond promptly. The urgency of lag-free communications and transactions gives integrators an opportunity to emphasize AV over IP’s low latency options.
As Justin Kennington at AVNetwork notes, the barriers to zero-latency transmission over IP continue melting away. While AV and IT do share bandwidth, improved encoding and the advent of 10 Gb AV over IP solutions allow AV and IT functionalities to be carried out over the same or parallel networks without infringing on one another’s ability to receive and transmit seamlessly.
Suddenly, holding a crystal-clear, high-resolution videoconference while sharing large quantities of data and executing perfectly-timed transactions is no longer science fiction, but business fact.
Boardrooms seeking to upgrade their AV systems may have trained executive and stakeholders to deal with subpar audio, shaky video and other hurdles. Some companies may even have changed how the space is used in order to adapt to deficiencies.
When talking about a new system or a substantial upgrade, then, integrators can gain buy-in by focusing on the ideal shape and uses of the space, according to AVNetwork’s Tim Kridel. Focusing on quality components, a layout that allows for natural conversation without shouting to be heard or straining to listen, and the use of artwork or architectural elements to shape the acoustical and visual space can all enhance the final results.
Every business has unique needs and goals, and an effective approach to each project will keep these goals in mind as it articulates benefits, highlights opportunities and proposes solutions. Case studies of successful tools and projects can help integrators envision a compelling story to sell their vision to financial decision makers.
Long-Term Use, Instant Access: Exelon Puts Video Outputs to the Test
US energy giant Exelon Corporation uses its trading space up to 12 hours a day. At every moment in the space, its traders need access to up to date information. Clear, easy-to-use displays are a must, and so is energy efficiency.
When the company invested in the redevelopment of its Baltimore headquarters, the trading floor got an overhaul, as well. The resulting 21-story Exelon Tower houses 650 energy traders and their support staff, who gain up-to-the minute information from the trading space’s three LED displays.
The largest screen measures 100 ft. by 7 ft. and includes real-time television and video feeds. Two 20 ft. by 4.5 ft. displays contribute additional statistics and information, as well as messaging and branding.
IBX: A Superior Boardroom for Superior Functionality
Independence Blue Cross (IBX) provides health insurance for 10 million people in 24 states and the District of Columbia. When the company sought an upgrade of its 40-seat executive conference room in Philadelphia, IBX demanded a seamless, easy-to-use system that allowed everything from AV components to lighting to be controlled from a single simple interface.
Enter a system managed by Kramer’s digital scaler/switchers and cables, allowing clear signals from up to 200 feet and integrating Blu-Ray DVD players, cable TV boxes and recording devices into a single, intuitive user interface.
CSG: Video Meetings Made Easy
Every financial professional has had at least one video meeting experience end in disaster. Incompatible devices, byzantine join structures and system lag have turned what should have been a routine conversation into a major headache.
Enter CSG, with a cloud-based video conferencing tool that allows anyone with an email address to connect in one click. When paired with a strong AV over IP system, the software makes it easy for business and financial professionals to host video meetings — never again worrying about the other party’s particular tools, scurrying to download the right apps or scrambling to address latency issues.
The Future of Fintech
While fintech’s many iterations will continue to change the way both professionals and consumers handle finances, economics and accounting, AV over IP offers a specific way for financial experts and their firms to streamline business. A well-built system allows these professionals to focus on ideas, analysis and goals — not on waiting for the network.
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