Elevating AV in India

India’s AV market has been growing rapidly over the last four to five years and is not expected to slow down anytime soon. Expected to grow year-on-year faster than the global average, the country will be a major contributor to APAC’s expansion. Across the globe, APAC’s growth rate is expected to make it eclipse the Americas in terms of revenue by 2019 as per AVIXA.

Whilst the positive sentiment is justified, one should realise that with great opportunities come challenges which cannot be overcome by individuals in India’s AV industry alone. Basic infrastructure in some cases is still being developed, the expectations of local organisations or governments differ from the numerous multinational setups, and India is a country of countries with different languages and cultures.

For India to reach its true potential in the global AV landscape, numerous stakeholders need to work together through these hurdles. Last year, AVIXA announced that its Certified Technology Specialist [CTS] program is now accredited by India’s National Accreditation Board for Education and Training (NABET). Much like the IT sector, I expect this recognition to create India’s next biggest export - the largest English-speaking population of AV professionals that (most likely) have dual-certification at minimum.

However, it is not just trade associations and government bodies that need to bear the brunt. Manufacturers who have taken the efforts to establish themselves in the country also need to participate in elevating the industry as a whole. This translates to developing the knowledge base of its customers at the grass roots levels because this ultimately creates a better ecosystem of channel partners, vendors and end customers most of all. This concept may seem obvious to many but the truth on the ground is there are many projects out there that are either over or under specified which results in a poor outcome for the end customer in terms of the experience and the balance sheet.

With the establishment of a Shure office in India last year, our efforts have focused primarily on education for the industry. We held numerous workshops and certification initiatives across the country. It has helped us to connect more closely with the market, highlight best practices and learn what we need to do better as a manufacturer of premium audio solutions.

We have learnt over the past few months that there are two different standards for both suppliers and customers in India. One for local organisations or governments and one for MNCs with global delivery sites in India.

Personally, I believe this gap does not need to be there and if we as an AV community of manufacturers, channel partners and integrators work together with the long-term view of closing this divide, then we can unlock the true potential of the AV industry in India.

At the recent InfoComm India 2019 show in Mumbai, we showcased how our existing hardware is seamlessly compatible with soft codecs that are quickly becoming the norm in the workplace. It was encouraging to see a number of local conglomerates that were interested to learn and understand how such developments can support their businesses and drive productivity.

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