Recap InfoComm 2016: Everything You and Your Boss Need to Know (Plus some Fun Stuff)

Hey AV techs & #AVTweeps, how rad was Infocomm 2016 this year? I mean geeze, we’re still sharing stories around the Vyopta office. In fact, we thought it might be helpful to jot down this year’s the best of the best for those of you working to whip together presentations for your team or boss. Also, for those of you who didn’t have the opportunity to attend this year (perhaps you’re seething with envy) and want to get a proposal together for 2017, we’ve got you covered there too.

This post you’ll find: 

  • Benefits of InfoComm International
  • Best of InfoComm 2016
  • Steven Dubner’s Keynote Speech
  • New AV Technology Debuts
  • “Cool Stuff” for InfoComm Attendees
  • This Year’s AV Award Winners
  • Hilarious Social Debauchery
  • Vyopta Happenings


Enjoy! And hey, take some of this stuff to your boss so you can be empowered to make your job a little easier, and your employees happier. 

Benefits of InfoComm International

InfoComm International is the trade association representing professional audiovisual communications industries. InfoComm offices are located across the globe and serve members, and the industry, through:

Robust Educational Programs: Infocomm University provides stellar technical and business courses that are available both in a in-person classrooms and online.

Top-Notch Resources: You will find AV standards, thought-leadership content, and market research.

International Events: They have created an extensive community by hosting roundtables and international trade shows.

InfoComm International has 5,000 members. This includes a wide-range of professionals including; manufacturers, systems integrators, dealers and distributors, independent consultants, programmers, rental and staging companies, end users and multimedia professionals from more than 80 countries.


Distribution of InfoComm International Members



They are an ANSI Accredited Standards Developer Organization (ASD), and provide industry standards as the foundation for quality audiovisual systems. In addition, InfoComm International offers the Certified Technology Specialist™ (CTS®) program, the only ANSI accredited audiovisual certification under the International Standard ISO/IEC 17024.

Despite these resources, InfoComm International’s most popular offering is InfoComm, the largest annual conference and exhibition for AV buyers and sellers worldwide.


“InfoComm 2016 is the largest, most exciting event in the Western Hemisphere focused on the pro-AV industry, with more than 1,000 exhibitors, thousands of products, and 40,000 attendees from 110+ countries. The InfoComm show is your once-a-year opportunity to see the latest audiovisual technology, learn the skills that will advance your career, and grow your professional network.” – InfoComm International


Knowing their background and that Infocomm Las Vegas this year was backed by partners like Samsung, BlackMagic Design, Crestron and Christie Digital, this event is undoubtedly worth your time.


Promotion for the 2017 conference is already underway. Other than the dates and location, they haven’t released much detail yet. However, click the link above or image below and stay-tuned for Infocomm 2017 in Orlando.



The Best of InfoComm 2016

Apparently, InfoComm 2016 was the most successful yet! This year did indeed have 1,000 exhibitors, but 211 were brand new. Meanwhile, 12,000 attendees registered. Training interest is thought to be driven in part by the 2,620 seminar and workshop packages sold.

Steven Dubner’s of Freakonomics Keynote Speech (Cliff Notes)

Dubner_Stephen-300x242Freakonomics co-author, Steven Dubner, was the headler for this year’s conference. Unfortunately, he doesn’t seem to be on any of the major social networking channels, but if you don’t know his name yet, you should learn it. Dubner’s keynote speech aimed to help AV professionals, “illuminate the unseen forces driving human behavior,” as seen in the session description. His data-driven perspective aimed to help attendees better understand the most complex, failure-prone piece of any given AV system — the user.  In his expert opinion, looking at the factors and incentives that drive technology usage is the best and only way to successfully nurture the adoption of new technologies.”  

“It can be hard to predict whether a technology solution is going to help achieve those goals unless you can think like a freak,” – Stephen Dubner, co-author of Freakonomics


  Even more interesting than his speech, I found his behind this behind-the-scenes video interview insightful, and more succinct. Being from Vyopta, I loved how David Silverman, Editor at Sound & Communications Magazine, began the interview. He states that some of the hottest trends this year were obviously in the unified communications and collaboration systems and use of personal devices in corporate offices, which are likely attributed to user demand. Dubner explains that this trend is exactly why many communication managers or technology professionals, are struggling. Most users have social scientists refer to as “heterogeneous preferences,” according to Dubner. In other words, there is no one-size-fits-all solution. Technology demand, especially in the unified collaboration space is fragmented Each user has a specific set of preferences, strengths, and weaknesses. This means that even a CEO, CTO, technology manager, IT professional, etc. cannot just pluck the correct collaboration solution from the web, apply it and have users adopt in droves. It’s just not that simple, and the wrong selection could lead to money down the drain (and no company wants to make that sacrifice). Instead, companies need data so they can appeal to the masses on the first try by either selecting the best or several communication technologies that meets the needs of their specific user set.   






New AV Technology Debuts

Of course, we’ve been tipping our hat to an endless list of new releases found at InfoComm this year. Barco’s OpSpace won Commercial Integrators “best” award, and the booth maintained a constant hum throughout InfoComm 2016 as tech’s took it for a spin. It’s the first operator workspace designed to for the operator. Naturally, we loved the overall vibe since it’s similar to Vyopta’s objective to “provide a single view” into their video conferencing and collaboration environments. In just a few clicks, operators can use OpSpace to call any application into a work area positioned directly in front of them. They can then interact while maintaining an overview of the other applications still present in their peripheral. Who out there doesn’t want a, “more ergonomic and intuitive way of working, contributing to lower stress levels and better decision-making?”  

Polycom® RealPresence Centro™ 360 Video Experience was next up on our list. In all honesty, you need to see it to believe it. So I’m just going to leave this video here for you to drool over. It had me feeling a little like Captain Kirk, though I’m admittedly more of a Star Wars fan.


Samsung unveiled their first, commercial installation mirror display in May of this year. However, at InfoComm, they created a “mirror wall” that had our very own Jacob Borgeson, Senior Product Marketer and resident knower of all things Vyopta, asking how he could have one installed in his house – immediately. Click here to see a recent video. Unfortunately, I’m not finding a video from InfoComm, but this video will get you close enough.  



This Year’s AV Award Winners

Although you can find video summaries of AV award winners from resources like AVNation,I really like this 2016 awards summary.    


        • Adele De Barri Piners of AV Award: Dr. Roger Hajjar, Chief Technology Officer and Founder of Prysm






        • CTS Holder of the year Award: Luke Jordan, CTS®-I, Service and Small Systems Manager for Electro Acoustics Inc.






        • Educator of the Year Award: Jeremy Caldera, CTS®-D, CTS-I, Lead Audiovisual Design Engineer, Zdi Inc.






        • Harland Thiel Volunteer of the Year Award: Christa Bender, CTS®, Account Manager, Pivot Communications and Hope Roth, CTS, Programmer, Riordan Brothers






        • Machey Barron Distinguished Achievement Award: David Bright, President of Kramer Electronics USA









        • Young AV Professionals Award: Kelly Perkins, CTS®, Marketing and Communications Manager, AVI Systems and Josh Srago, CTS, Design Engineer, TEECOM




    Here are also a few other awards given from specific companies who attended InfoComm this year:  


“Cool Stuff” for Attendees

InfoComm seems to showcase every gadget and technology. For instance, MultiTactation get’s crazy with their interactive displays, it won’t be long until office operate like Tony Stark’s.


To be expected, virtual reality simulators and tools made a strong appearance. Although they were amazing to try out, everyone looks a little ridiculous when photographed.  


Finally, a random thing we found to be the talk of the conference – a live condor. Since a phoenix is bird only found in fantasy novels, Phoenix Audio Technologies substituted a giant condor that everyone is still talking about. The worked closely with The Condor Fund an organization working to, “stop the capture, torture, and killing of condors for the Yawar Festivals.” Pretty genuis, and Condor MiCarry certainly did his job. People couldn’t get enough of this magnificent creature.


Hilarious Social Debauchery

Of course, no AV or technology event would be complete without some hilariousness. This first video is my personal favorite. Wait for iiit…  

“Machine overlords” took poor @CraftGangsta hostage. That’s at least that’s what I thought when I first skimmed this post, it’s just the robot’s hand to the left.  



#selfiewithrobot #ricoh #infocomm16 #vegas #therobotsarewinning #culturegm4

A photo posted by @craftygangsta on

Ricoch’s robot was indeed friendly, as confirmed by @SandyMan0723. He caught him getting his groove via Instagram.  


#infocomm16 #ricohmaxxav #roadtrip A video posted by Derek Sands ?™ (@sandman0723) on


Oh, and apparently Abraham Lincoln was there. Ya know, because he’s totally up-to-date on the recent technology trends. Also, kudos to @jaympass for being a lady in the technology industry.



DREAMS REALLY DO COME TRUE #abeismybabe #infocomm16

A photo posted by @jaympass on


Vyopta Happenings

Naturally, Vyopta had a great time as well. We were a player in InfoComm’s Innovation Showcase, and demoed out vAnalytics product that allows for you to proactively monitor your entire video conferencing and collaboration environment so you can easily improve (hence our #makedatagreatagain campaign).  Chris Neto, was kind enough to craft a shoutout to our product via AVNation’s blog.  He stated,  

“I spent the better part of my day in the Innovations Showcase portion of the show floor. What I find fascinating about these companies are their innovative approach to unique problems. Take a company like Vyopta. They provide data analytics that tech managers can use to justify their return on investment. What may sound like a simple problem may in fact be a daunting project for a two man tech team with 150 rooms. This will save both time and money in the long run.” – Chris Neto, Audiovisual Consultant and Freelance Writer/Podcaster


  On top of that win, our own Jacob Borgeson (same guy who wants a Samsung mirror display like none other), was asked by Rave Publications to complete a summary of our primary video conferencing and collaboration product, vAnalytics.    We also got to spend some with some of our favorite attendees! Thanks for swinging by our booth! 

So, those are the highlights! We hope you find them helpful whether you’re presenting what you’ve learned to your organization or you want to make sure you can attend the AV technology event of the year. A huge thank you to InfoComm International for another great year. We can hardly wait to see what 2017 brings.