The world of audio-visual (AV) has changed drastically over the past couple of years. The global pandemic has accelerated the adoption of remote, hybrid and agile ways of working and learning, solidifying the use of technology in our day-to-day lives. We have seen incredible technological advancements due to this shift including Microsoft Teams and Zoom creating a more inclusive virtual meeting environment.
Here at Midwich, we understand the importance of continuous innovation. We have been focused on bringing the most up-to-date solutions to our customers for over 40 years, 20 of which we’ve been creating the AV Guide!
To mark and celebrate this long history of our AV Guide, we’re looking back through the history of technology and the evolution of our offering throughout the years. All aboard the nostalgia train!
Looking around the office, including your own home office, you can see audio-visual technology all around you – monitors, headsets, cameras, interactive screens in the meeting room, etc. But how did something so vital for work, retail, education and other environments come about?
We can trace the beginning of the audio-visual industry all the way back to 1826 when Joseph Nicéphore Niépce took the world’s first photograph titled View from the Window at Le Gras. It may not seem like much but that only emphasised the fascination with capturing our surroundings.
The audio element of the AV industry didn’t emerge until 1860 when the earliest device known to preserve sound was invented – the phonautograph.
The next 100 years were marked by incredible inventions and innovations that seeped into our daily lives, either as entertainment (cinema, TVs, etc) or to effectively communicate with each other (telegraph, telephone, etc). New technology, no matter how astonishing at the beginning, finds its way to the mainstream eventually.
Despite the first ever film being captured in 1888, mixing audio and visual components proved to be a complicated task. It wasn’t until The Jazz Singer (1927) that the first feature-length motion picture had synchronised recorded music score and lip-synchronous singing and speech. These films became known as talkies.
It was only a matter of time until it was adopted into the modern way of life. The first television appeared in the same year, followed by the extensive development of digital computers. The rest was history!
Now we have technology at our fingertips that can be traced back to these early inventions. AI-powered cameras, projectors and other smart devices not only bring benefits to people and businesses but just by existing, they celebrate the long history of the audio-visual industry.
Appearing under Advantage Audio-Visual, AV Reference Guide or just simply AV Guide, it’s Midwich’s longest-running, technology-showcase asset that was first launched in 2002.
2005 issue of advantage audio-visual guide
Even before we became a global AV distributor superpower, Midwich was focused on providing the best customer experience. The advantage audio-visual guide was launched with just 8 brands and 2 technology sections – plasma screens and projectors.
Since then, the evolution of the guide has reflected the innovations and growth of the industry, making sure to include all the latest technology and the most groundbreaking products and brands.
Over the 20 years of producing the guide, we’ve jumped from 8 brand inclusion to almost 100 audio-visual brands and accessories. The AV Guide of today has 11 sections such as Large Format Displays, Projection, UC&C, Mounts & Accessories, Broadcasting and more.
Before worldwide digitisation, the AV Guide was printed and posted to clients and partners regularly. However, Midwich has always been dedicated to its sustainability efforts, producing early advantage audio-visual guides on ethically sourced recycled paper and moving to 100% recyclable paper in 2019.
The guide continues to grow, and we expect it to reach even more people interested in AV technology.
Overcoming the hurdles of the global pandemic and successfully adjusting to the shifts in the market, the AV industry continues to grow. The new Midwich AV Guide provides you with a complete all-around overview of our latest AV solutions.
Industry events are the perfect place to get a glimpse of the future of AV. The return of ISE and InfoComm has introduced us to new trends such as sub 0.5mm pixel pitch LED solutions, the move to 21:9 aspect ratios, Microsoft Teams Front Row and 8K projection and camera technology.
We continue to expand our brand portfolio, as we have done so extensively over the past couple of years! Strategic partnerships have led us to build alliances with Zoom and Microsoft. We are delighted to have been announced as a master agent for Zoom licensing and we have more exciting news to come in terms of our brand strategy so watch this space.
Download your FREE digital AV Guide HERE or
Request your FREE printed AV Guide!