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One of the most complex categories in the home tech market to master is the home network. Properly configuring IP addresses, setting up security protocols and establishing consistent, reliable Wi-Fi coverage is an IT exercise that for many feels foreign having dealt mostly with the AV and automation side of the equation. Still, networking is a necessary component of a complete smart home ecosystem, providing a solid communications foundation to support the myriad activities your clients love – audio and video streaming, app-based control, seamless Internet access, and more. There’s a lot at risk if you implement a network poorly—customer satisfaction and the operational efficiency and profitability of your business. NETGEAR AV was established to help AV integrators transition from traditional point-to-point cabling to network-based installation by radically simplifying the configuration, design and deployment process. They’ve done much of the complicated legwork on the front end to make your job easier and your customers happier.
Residential Systems spoke recently with Seth Rubenstein, Residential AV Sales Manager and John Henkel, Director of SMB Product Marketing, at NETGEAR AV to hear how NETGEAR AV is making it easier for AV integrators to successfully deploy robust networks in increasingly challenging residential and commercial environments:
Residential Systems: What are the reasons behind the creation of NETGEAR AV? What voids in the marketplace does it fill?
NETGEAR AV [SETH]: NETGEAR AV was established to address networking challenges and solutions specific to the AV market and to differentiate AV-focused networking products from business and consumer products available through our NETGEAR division. From feature sets to pricing structure, NETGEAR AV products are designed to help residential and commercial AV integrators overcome the inherent challenges of delivering fast, reliable networking solutions to their residential and commercial customers. Both our switches and access points adhere to the latest industry protocols, including an enhanced version of IGMP for our switches and Wi-Fi 6 and Wi-Fi 6E for our access points.
Residential Systems: How is NETGEAR AV differentiating itself from competitive networking solutions?
NETGEAR AV [JOHN]: NETGEAR AV has designed and engineered its networking products to work out of the box for most applications. Plus, our AV user interface utilizes certified profiles to dramatically simplify the configuration of network switches for integrators deploying audio and/or video over IP networks. Instead of finding and entering the appropriate IP parameters yourself to configure a switch, with our interface you simply click on the preconfigured profile, select the ports you’ll be using, and click apply. What once took at least 30 minutes to configure a single switch now takes just a few seconds, not to mention minimizing any chance of human error.
We know, however, that it takes more than great products to achieve exceptional networking performance. That’s why we also offer free professional-level design and troubleshooting assistance to AV integrators for both network switch and wireless access point installations. Integrators can contact our Pro AV and Pro WiFi Design Teams 24/7 to get the help they need—often within a couple of hours. Also, for AV integrators new to networking, we offer our NETGEAR Academy (www.netgear.academy) for free, online training courses.
Residential Systems: What kinds of network monitoring and management resources do you provide to the AV integration channel?
NETGEAR AV [JOHN]: Our Engage Controller provides a centralized tool for onboarding, configuring, and managing our M4250 and M4300 Pro AV switches. Integrators can use it to execute firmware updates and AV-over-IP profiles to multiple switches. We also offer our Insight Pro Remote management platform for cloud-based configuration and management of access points and other non-AV switches. These multi-location and multi-tenancy solutions allow managed service providers a recurring revenue stream minus costly truck rolls.
About NETGEAR AV
NETGEAR AV combines a comprehensive portfolio of industry-leading network switches and access points along with professional tech and design support to help AV integrators deploy the fast, reliable networks today’s tech savvy customers require. NETGEAR AV’s networking solutions are geared for configuration simplicity and installation efficiency so integrators can complete jobs quicky, confidently and profitably. To learn more about their products, service, and support please visit http://www.netgear.com/residential.