InfoComm 2016 – Breaking the Display Mold and Other Trends

It is no secret that InfoComm is a video-centric show, but this year there is a tremor of change in the way video is displayed.
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It is no secret that InfoComm is a video-centric show, but this year there is a tremor of change in the way video is displayed.

Video Walls Reinvented
Sony Canvas has certainly been one of the most talked about products at the show thus far. Canvas is a “high-end visual display that redefines the landscape for large-scale visual entertainment.” The new technology, Crystal Light Emitting Diode Integrated Structure (CLEDIS), uses Sony’s ultrafine LEDs in a unique surface mounting structure as its light source to deliver a visual experience not possible with even the highest end conventional LED array. This scalable new type of canvas offers 99 percent black surface area, for high contrast, high resolution, and immersive visuals.

What that equates to is a stunning, retina-burning, game-changing display technology that cannot be described by the meager words of this humble writer. Don’t worry kids, I’m sure (as in, I bet my bottom dollar) that this tech will trickle down soon enough to the residential market. And yes, it is that amazing.

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Sony Canvas 

What is After 4K?

Where do we go in the display market after 4K (and before 8K and beyond can come to play)? Well, we get stronger, more resistant, transparent sets. We add sensors. We bend and stretch the screen. We display on mirrors, and we get much, much bigger screens. These are the trends at InfoComm, and they’re stunning.

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Samsung's durability demo 

Planar is showing off a 30-foot wide by 18-foot tall video display that is "literally" larger than life. They are also showing transparent video displays currently marketed for the retail channel. Samsung has a demo showing off vibrating, water soaked and hammered (aka, durable) sets.

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Planar's massive display 

Still desire a plain old TV set? Sharp brought out its 120-inch display. You will just need a new truck to deliver such a massive piece of glass.

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Sharp's 120-inch display 

Innovation Showcase
Directed by a friend, I went in search of the innovation showcase. From the Drywall Trapper — a box that captures and collects your dust — to Meural Canvas — the connected canvas that allows you to display art and photography wireless on your wall — it was pretty enlightening.

The Resurgence of Art
A trend at this year's show has been art interlaced with technology to create some stunning visual creations. Epson partnered with Refik Anadol, creator of some of the most stunning images I’ve ever seen. You can check it out here, but I’m not sure an internet link can do it justice.

Sometimes you come across such a cool technology or product that it truly moves you. Back in the Innovation Showcase, a company called Meural was displaying art on a matte LED screen framed beautifully. That alone wasn’t groundbreaking, but the addition of gesture control and countless galleries with information, and you now have an art gallery at your fingertips.

The Rise of Some of Our Favorites

Is it oddly motherly if I tell you some of our beloved companies have blossomed? Middle Atlantic showed off 400 new products and racks were only a small part of what was on display. Atlona has brought to market AV over IP — a technology trending at this year's show. They were front and center on the show floor, which was a significant move from the back of the convention center only a few short years ago.

Huddle Space Stand Strong
At countless booths this year are problem solvers and solutions for the huddle space. A huddle space is a “laid back” conference room usually for two to four employees to meet. Could we see such areas in the home in the future? Maybe it becomes the new home office model..

One thing is for certain this year: InfoComm continues to be a feast for the eyes. Now I’m headed back to the show floor for Day Two.

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