Three Reasons ‘Family’ is Not a Dirty Word in Business

By Heather L. Sidorowicz | May 5, 2016

At the beginning of the year, I came across an article listing the 50 biggest mistakes that companies make. One that stood out was “hiring family.” My father started Southtown Audio Video (SAV) in 1984, and I purchased it from him in 2014. Maybe because he built the company with his blood, sweat, and tears, business was extremely personal to him. So intimate, in fact, that at times, it was hard to run it as a proper business. But the man succeeded as a business owner for more than 30 years, so who are we to judge?

DISH Wants to Fix Your Phone. Really

By John Sciacca | May 4, 2016

When I saw an email this week from DISH’s terrific PR gal, Danielle Johnson, I was hoping it was going to herald the imminent arrival of the new Voice Remote. The email’s subject line was “NEWS: DISH introduces onsite ‘Smart Phone Repair’,” leading me to think there was some new smartphone integration that could diagnose a Hopper problem or something. I don’t know, but it’s DISH, so it must be something cool...

Exploring a Manufacturer’s Rep Showcase

By Todd Anthony Puma | May 3, 2016

It’s great when we can see product firsthand and get a quick demo of it, but not everyone can make it to a tradeshow like CEDIA or InfoComm. Last week, I took a few hours out of my day to go to the far West Side of Manhattan to attend the Sapphire Marketing Roadshow.  

Networking for Everything from Sonos to Crestron

By Todd Anthony Puma | April 28, 2016

I know a lot of integrators have been concerned that with Control4’s acquisition of Pakedge, customer service may suffer from the networking technology provider. So far, based on my personal experience, we have seen no drop off in the quality of our interactions with Pakedge technical support; they are still amazing in what they do. 

Physical Media: The Force Awakens

By John Sciacca | April 27, 2016

Physical media seems to have the incredible, third-act staying power of a Rocky movie. Sure, it’s going to get beat to hell over 14 rounds, dragged about and battered in the mainstream, but at the end of the day, it’s gonna dig deep and manage one friggin’ hell of a left hook to come out on top right before the end credits start to roll.

Legrand Flips the Switch on Sustainable Energy

By Garen S. Sahagian | April 26, 2016

Last week I watched Legrand “flip the switch” on its latest investment in sustainability, a 500kW, solid-oxide fuel cell system for providing cleaner and more efficient power to its North American headquarters in Connecticut.

Paradigm’s Premium Wireless System vs. Sonos

By Heather L. Sidorowicz | April 21, 2016

Sonos' claim to fame is they built a powerful, unbreakable app for both iOS and Android (and Kindle too) that works, well—maybe even flawlessly. An integrator can install multiple rooms of music in hours. Most of us “in the know” install better speakers with Connect Amps utilizing the smartphone app with better quality sound.

How can another company compete?

Leap of Faith: Committing to a New Automation Brand

By Todd Anthony Puma | April 20, 2016

Mark (of Home Theater Advisors fame) recently began exploring new whole-home automation systems. So far, however, he has been concerned that he cannot get hands-on with certain products without a large upfront commitment in time, money, and resources. He is frustrated that most home automation companies require a leap of faith that you are going to love the product and that it will be a great fit for your business.

What Kind of Caddy Are You?

By John Sciacca | April 19, 2016

The modern caddy and golfer relationship reminded me of our roles with clients. Typically they have little to no idea what they need for their project, but come to us seeking our years of experience to provide the best read on their situation. 

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