CEDIA EXPO Buzz: What Was Seen and Heard at CEDIA Expo 2011
AMX Expo Intros Include Unity Promo
AMX has announced the launch of the AMX Unity promotion, which is meant to increase profit potential for U.S. residential product dealers. Demonstrated at CEDIA Expo, it will provide dealers with free programming and touch panel design when they buy qualifying AMX digital video switchers and touch panels.
“Since AMX technology is engineered with the capabilities and flexibility most systems do not have, dealers can offer customers a wider selection of more advanced home automation ideas like daylight harvesting with lighting schedules; iTunes library accessibility in every room; pool pump and heater automation and energy consumption/management—the scope of possibilities will definitely win over homeowners,” according to AMX residential vice president Blake Jackson, who stated Unity’s benefits.
Unity, which covers up to a maximum of 32 zones, is expected to roll out within the next few weeks.
Crestron Demos Its NFC
Solution at Expo
Amidst numerous product introductions at CEDIA Expo, Crestron demonstrated its application of Near Field Communication (NFC) technology, which it is calling airConnect.
Once specially programmed thin tags are affixed behind wall keypads and faceplates, homeowners, without launching an app, can trigger personalized lighting, shading, entertainment system and temperature control commands by putting their smartphones close to the embedded NFC tag to activate it.
Setting up a phone to work with NFC tags requires minimal integrator programming, the company said. Right now, NFC technology is Android-device compatible, but Crestron will add iPhone and iPad support when those devices are enabled for NFC, according to Jeff Singer, director of global marketing.
Other highlights at the Crestron booth included:
• The debut of Crestron’s Shading Solutions lineup. Around 400 fabric choices are available as well as three hardware series. The launch is happening along with a Crestron Design Tool dealer support program.
• The introduction of Crestron Studio Home Designer software, which enables touchscreen GUI creation and system design while substantially cutting down programming time; further, it is backward-compatible to support existing programs. Feature highlights include: Smart Sizing, which automatically scales graphics across all types of screens with no loss of resolution on larger screens; Universal Upload, which sends one touchscreen program all at once to all screens in a project; and Smart Object, whereby programmers can drag and drop controls, presets and metadata interfaces from a library into a project and have that element automatically populate everywhere it is required.
• The Sonnex multi-room HD audio system, which supports Apple AirPlay.