CEDIA Roundtable: The Future of the Specialty CE and Integration Markets
Serious networks are mandatory, yet most CEDIA members are not taking network design seriously enough. This is fundamental, not an option. Our network designs have become extremely complex with privacy, security, bandwidth performance, QoS (quality of service), and mixed wireless environments that pose huge challenges. CEDIA University has deep content on network design and installation. It's just nuts not to take advantage of this rich resource.
I've been through some complex installations lately where the network design was handled by the client's IT department. They often don't go well and burn up huge amounts of technical time on site. I recommend taking the lead role in network design by developing the reference block diagrams, point-to-point wiring schematics, IP address maps, security and firewall settings, VPN, VLAN, VNC, VoIP, the works. These decisions cannot be made casually via broken email chains and lost voicemails from caffeine-laced IT guys. Own this part of the design and you become indispensable to the client. This is where huge profit is to be made.
A hugely important product category has opened up these past few years in network surveillance and off-site monitoring. These are CEDIA friends making seriously useful products that we can make real money and recurring revenue on. Certified Cyber Solutions, ihiji and Nuage Nine come to mind. I'm sure we'll see others at Expo this year. Seek them out and integrate them into your designs. You will deliver a whole new class of service for your clients.