News from CEDIA's Technology Council
INDUSTRY EXPERTS FORECAST 2011 ELECTRONIC TRENDS
Custom Electronic Design and Installation Association experts spotlight trends to simplify everyday life
INDIANAPOLIS – Homeowners turn to technology to simplify their lives, enhance their communications and make everyday tasks more intuitive. At the 2010 CEDIA EXPO, electronic systems experts from around the world gathered to discuss home technology trends for 2011 and the years to come.
The Custom Electronic Design and Installation Association (CEDIA) is the leading authority on home electronic solutions. It is comprised of companies that specialize in the design and installation of residential electronic systems, and it serves as a resource to consumers for their electronic systems needs. It recently hosted its annual EXPO, the residential electronic systems industry’s leading annual trade show, which provided attendees with information on the latest advancements in technology and design. The 2010 event was held at the Georgia World Congress Center September 22-26.
Penetration of electronics, and integrated electronics in particular, is expected to continue to accelerate in 2011. Despite a sluggish-at-best economy, consumers are purchasing more and more internet-connected products for the home. This will continue to perpetuate in 2011 as awareness of mobile technology, tablet computing and product integration has reached critical mass.
"Homeowners are looking for sleek, elegant products which are infinitely connected, easy to use, portable and high quality,” said Dave Pedigo, senior director of technology, CEDIA. “They are looking for electronics that disappear into the design of the room and ultimately enhance their lifestyles. In the coming year, we’ll see technologies that are faster, more sophisticated and more elegant while connecting to all forms of audio, video and social media.”
According to CEDIA experts, the electronic systems categories that will trend high for 2011 and beyond are ones that are provide ease of access, can improve quality of life, reduce economic and environmental impact and are easy to use. Some of the trends include:
1. Video: The Connected TV, Super-Thin and Energy-Efficient displays, and 3D
Televisions aren’t just in the living room and bedroom anymore. Trends in this category include:
- There will continue to be a blurring of the line between TVs and computers as more TVs will be enabled with cameras for video conferencing, social-media-enabled widgets and media receivers.
- New media receivers will enable consumers to go "over the top" – i.e., get rid of their cable/satellite bill and instead rely on internet content and over-the-air broadcasts for significant savings.
- Super-thin TVs - some as thin as a credit card - can be discreetly installed in bathrooms, set into mirrors, or integrated in kitchens where entertainers and cooks spend plenty of hours.
- Televisions are becoming substantially more energy-efficient.
- Front projectors will move towards LED- and laser-based projection, which will significantly reduce energy consumption as well as bulb replacement needs.
- 3D will continue to grow, albeit slightly more slowly than initial projections. According to a July 2010 survey by DisplaySearch, by 2014 nearly all TVs 42" and above will be 3D-ready. DisplaySearch also projects that 42.9 million 3D-ready TVs will be sold by 2014.
- There will be a steady increase in 3D content, and not just animation. Live events, movies and sports will be recorded and broadcast in 2011. Many movies will be converted from 2D to 3D, and 3D games will be available for newer game consoles.
2. App-Driven Technologies
The adoption rate for applications will continue to grow rapidly, allowing third-party developers to offer a vast array of products, games and interfaces that allow consumers to customize their viewing habits.
3. The Need for IP Experts
- As consumers continue to view digital content and connect a large number of IP-enabled products within their home, the need for IP experts who set up, manage and maintain the digital home environment will grow.
- This need includes wireless security, system upgrades, remote diagnostics and repair.
4. Focus on Return on Investment
Sophisticated home technology is not just an extravagance for the rich and famous. Electronic systems contractors (ESCs) offer a suite of services that can provide high-quality entertainment and security while saving clients money, improving quality of life and reducing environmental impact. Examples include:
- Digital home health technologies that allow aging homeowners to stay in their homes longer rather than transitioning to assisted living. Technologies include scales that monitor weight change over time and send data to healthcare professionals; personal emergency response systems; and early cancer detection.
- Sustainable lifestyles solutions, including energy monitors that report how much energy is used and where; appliances that use wireless networks to communicate maintenance issues; photovoltaic solar panels; and daylight harvesting systems that control window treatments to help reduce HVAC usage.
- Light-emitting diode (LED) light bulbs will gain more traction in 2011 and beyond, as they are significantly more energy-efficient and do not contain mercury vapor as compact fluorescent bulbs do.
- ESCs can design and install systems that maximize the web-based and broadcast content viewing experience, allowing consumers to cut the cable/satellite cord and save money while still receiving must-see programming.
5. Home Theaters, Gaming and Media Rooms
A Parks Associates survey indicates U.S. revenues for installed home theaters and multi-room audio systems will continue to grow – from $6 billion in 2007 to more than $11 billion by 2012. Meanwhile, the layout and design of the traditional media room is getting a makeover. Trends include:
- An all-immersive entertainment environment with motion chairs, 3D surround sound and giant 3D screen, offering the ultimate movie-watching experience.
- Thanks to new technologies like gaming systems that can actually “see” the players, lighting and layout matter more than ever. Televisions are being installed with consideration of how the family uses the space.
- Integration with mobile devices and tablet PCs, allowing homeowners to adjust volume, choose movies and share content streaming to their TVs.
- Home theater audio is dominated by in-ceiling and in-wall speakers. Together these speakers account for 75 percent of speakers installed for home theater audio. (Source: Parks Associates)
“The advice we give homeowners is to critically consider how they use the home. From there, we can incorporate technologies that will make their living space more instinctively efficient,” added Pedigo. “Technologies that seem futuristic or designed for the elite are becoming more readily available to the mainstream marketplace, offering everyday homeowners the ability to make their lives simpler, more luxurious, more eco-friendly and more fun.”
CEDIA members create a fully integrated experience for clients that address their unique needs and concerns. CEDIA has developed a comprehensive list of tips (available upon request) to assist consumers in making informed decisions when investing in home electronics. To learn more about CEDIA, visit www.cedia.org. The free Electronic Lifestyles® Finder Service on the site will help you locate a qualified member in your area.
CEDIA is an international trade association of companies that specialize in designing and installing electronic systems for the home. The association was founded in September 1989 and has more than 3,500 member companies worldwide. CEDIA Members are established and insured businesses with bona fide qualifications and experience in this specialized field. For more information on CEDIA, visit the association’s website at www.cedia.org.
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