The message being promoted at the AMX booth (4727) is “simplicity” this year, especially with a cool little widget that the company’s marketing manager, Jeff Kindig, calls “our sleeper product at the show.” That’s because AMX HydraPort Connection technology solves important, little problems, when compared to the mega signal switchers and other types of technology found across the show. HydraPort is a simple, little, table pop-up module column that is easily custom configurable by the installer or end user directly.
Brian Davies of AMX’s European Technology Division calls the technology “Legos” and understandably so–you configure what you want/need through the AMX web site at http://amx.com/hydraportpreview/# and AMX sends along the requested components to the installer, who then slides them in and hooks everything up, usually without help from, or need of, an electrician. The pieces simply slide in and out–making it an easy to install choice for board rooms, lecture halls, and so on.
Even AMX’s higher-end technology, like the Enova line of boxes, is built around the simplicity theme by reducing hardware requirements in various kinds of systems. Control, switching, scaling, transcoding, amplifying, mixing, even power control are all put into single boxes with Enova, both on the entry level and on the higher end.
These sorts of developments, Davies suggested to me, are the logical outcome of AMX’s strategic effort over several years to incorporate and meld all the various technologies that have been part of the company’s many acquisitions. Sometimes criticized for its aggressive acquisition strategy, AMX, according to Davies, had a master plan all along to mix-and-match those technologies together in newer, streamlined products, and what we’re seeing at the AMX booth, he says, is the logical outcome of that.
“It just took time, and people aren’t always patient,” he told me. “But I think these products show clearly where the strategy has been going all along.”