New year, new technology. As offices across the country fill up in the days after the festive holidays, it’s almost back to business as usual.
But in 2020, just what is ‘business as usual’ when it comes to audiovisual technology? There have been some major transformations in the market over the past 12 months and the pace of improvement is showing no signs of slowing down.
If you ask us, it’s the perfect time to take a look ahead at just what we can expect in the office projector market over the course of the year. Read on for our take on the big developments, the big expectations and the big trends you need to keep a very close eye on this year.
The big 3
Laser projectors – kind of a big deal
First things first, 2020 will be the year laser projectors come of age. We’ve seen this trend building over the past 18 months but with some manufacturers now only releasing high-brightness (5,000 lumens-plus) projectors with laser light sources, this really is the year laser secures its place on the office projector stage.
Price point has to be a factor for this; the technology has become more accessible over time. But demand is also a driver and it’s not hard to see why. If you’re responsible for procuring the office equipment your company relies on, a laser office projector will boost longevity and increase efficiency.
Laser-based projectors require less maintenance because they don’t contain the lamps that conventional models do. Those lamps fade out over time and not only increase maintenance costs, but also lose brightness even before they need replacing, reducing the effectiveness of the technology.
High demand for high resolution
In a trend that will surprise nobody who has purchased a projector or indeed any device with a screen recently, there is a growing demand for high resolution. We’ve seen more of the early 8K resolution screens unveiled at CES 2020; our quest to see every millimetre of detail in our images reaches new heights every day.
In the workplace, projectors dominate when it comes to big picture, high-resolution images. In 2019, we saw a 40 per cent jump in demand for WUXGA-resolution models as many businesses took advantage of cheaper prices and better technology, to step things up from 1080p as an entry point for resolution.
But demand rose in the upper tiers of resolution as well, with more 4K UHD devices selling than ever before. It’s true that Native 4K corporate projectors remain unrealistic for all but the deepest pockets. However, there is no doubt that manufacturers’ innovation has paid off, owing to the massive popularity of upscaled 4K devices.
Bright, brighter, brightest
Completing the holy trinity of office projector assets, we have brightness. At Projectorpoint, we saw demand for 5,000 lumens brightness projectors rise some 22 per cent in 2019, while demand for models rated 6,000 lumens and up rose by an impressive 50 per cent in the same time period.
Ambient lighting, muted colours and restricted installation options have all become things of the past thanks to the brighter and brighter projectors now on the market. For the cost-conscious office market, again, a fall in the price point that has come with technical evolution has meant that brighter projectors have become more accessible.
Last year, we saw demand for office projectors with brightness levels below 3,000 lumens plummet by 82 per cent, while corporate sales saw a hefty 50 per cent rise in devices at 6,000 lumens. If you ask us, this is only going to continue through 2020.
To be honest, these big three trends are nothing new. But we bet that 2020 will be the year to bear witness to a pace of change and a shift in attitude that are new.
UK workplaces have changed massively in the last few years. For big businesses, the campus-style office is still a reality, with an established IT department and static rooms with defined uses in place. This type of space doesn’t demand too much change or evolution when it comes to audiovisual technology.
But no business is an island! These big businesses are interacting with a very different landscape among their smaller, more dynamic counterparts. The rise (and subsequent wobble) of WeWork heralded an onslaught of new flexible working options that have now well and truly cemented themselves in our working cultures.
Meeting rooms on demand, bring your own device policies, hot desking, work from home policies…
What were innovative outliers just a few years ago are well and truly mainstream trends, as we move into 2020.
With these shifts in working practices come shifting attitudes. Employees have come to expect more from their technology as standard. What was once ‘nice to have’ has become a requirement for many.
It is the most agile and innovative teams that have led the drive in improving projector technology for the business market so far. We predict that 2020 is the year that their energy and ambition result in models which became part of the accepted norm for the rest of us.
Step up to the mark
For audiovisual suppliers and manufacturers, this means it’s time to up our game. Projectors are part of an audiovisual suite that needs to work for the people in the room.
Teams demand brighter, sharper images and expect simple straightforward connectivity. Workspace provides Barco Clickshare across the majority of their meeting rooms. Can we really expect teams from these spaces to attend a meeting at a ‘traditional’ office and spend time messing about with multiple adapters and cables just to share their screen, when they’ve grown used to doing so at the simple touch of a button?
A revolution in the market place has been building for a couple of years now, with improvements in picture quality accelerating and prices falling. But this year, we’ve reached a tipping point and it is the time for true 2020 vision (sorry, we couldn’t resist).
Seen something you like, but feel like you need a demo before pressing ahead with a purchase? Why not book one with Projectorpoint today? By calling us on 0800 073 0833 or filling in this form here, you can arrange to see a model in action, before going ahead with a full-blown systems upgrade.