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QSC’s Joe Pham Shares Insights on How AI Will Change Everything

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Few speakers could weave together asteroids, selfies, ’70s rock music, and artificial intelligence. Yet when Joe Pham, CEO of QSC, spoke at our Global Sales Summit in April, he brought the story together with ease.

An innovator dedicated to delivering technology-empowered, human-centric experiences, Joe shared his thoughts on the pace of innovation, its exponential nature, the need for human connection, and how AV will explode due to AI.

Read on for a short summary of Joe’s insights.

The pace and exponential nature of innovation

When you compare how children live today with how their parents lived just one generation ago, it’s clear the world has changed completely.  

In a playful, five-minute overview, Joe examined the progress, innovation and technology the world has experienced in the course of one million years of history. Starting with fire and making his way through the advent of the printing press, the Industrial Revolution, and putting a man on the moon, Joe explained that the pace of change has continued to move exponentially faster. With the latest advancements in artificial intelligence, the pace is set to increase even more rapidly. 

In fact, Joe believes that we can’t even process the pace of innovation we’re about to experience and calls this period “the most remarkable of all remarkable times in human history.” 

The early stages of artificial intelligence

Next, he provided our Global Sales Summit attendees with an overview of artificial intelligence and its breakthrough moment. AI truly rose to prominence a little more than a decade ago. In this brief time, it has moved through distinct eras including the intro of ChatGPT, which ushered in the generative era we’re experiencing today.  

In the next era – the reasoning era – Joe believes AI will have a more profound impact on humanity than fire, electricity, and the internet because it’s focused on intelligence, which is the creation of everything we have.

Why AV matters now more than ever

As Joe’s keynote continued, he connected the idea of exponential change and AI to the audiovisual industry – and the importance of human connection.  

“It is the great modern irony that in a world where nearly 8 billion people are technologically connected, the world is more disconnected than ever as human beings.”  - Joe Pham, CEO of QSC.

During the pandemic, we experienced five years’ worth of technology adoption in five months – especially related to video conferencing. At the same time, many companies have found it challenging to keep employees engaged and connected in this new hybrid environment.  

This lack of engagement and connection is an expensive challenge for companies. In fact, he estimates the total cost of the problem at $1 trillion dollars.  

“CEOs intrinsically know that the more engaged and connected their workforce is, the better their business will be,” Joe explained. “We’re now in a time where this priority is much more important – and much more difficult to achieve.” 
  
The AV industry is poised to solve this challenge because it plays a critical role in keeping the workforce and workplace connected.

How AI will fundamentally change AV

As an industry, Pro AV has always lagged behind the IT industry. Now, as the world needs audiovisual solutions to connect, we also have incredible access to data that will dramatically impact the work we do, but only if we architect our solutions differently. 

In the past, AV’s layers were the device, the edge, and then the cloud. By switching to a cloud-first architecture (as most IT is architected), companies can connect AV tools to a singular platform with an ecosystem built around it. Once created, we can leverage AV data and artificial intelligence in new ways.  

Here are just a few examples unfolding, according to Joe. 

Audio AI – In the past, we had to force-engineer to filter out specific audio distractions. Now, we can use AI for noise suppression, sound separation, blind source detection, audio quality, voice prints, and studio quality. Using a neural network, you can train these tools to separate out a range of distractions.  

Controls AI – We’ll begin to see a closed loop with actuation or a system that monitors and adjusts itself. For example, a camera could detect that participants can no longer see a display because the sun is shining through the windows and would automatically close the shades. The brain behind this process is a neural network.  

Data analytics and predictive analytics – Once all AV devices are connected to a platform piped to the cloud, machine learning could step in. By using it, we can detect faults or anomalies and predict when AV equipment (hardware or software) will fail.  

These are just a few ways Joe believes AI will benefit the AV industry. The only limitations in the evolution of AI and AV is our imagination of what’s possible.

In the AI era, AV takes center stage 

Joe’s closing remarks reminded our team about the human joy that AV systems create, from Taylor Swift’s Eras Tour to solutions used in K-12 and higher education. 

AV solutions and technology enable human connection when the need for connection is greatest. They can also provide data enabling machine learning and artificial intelligence to achieve better insights and outcomes across various verticals.  

This, in turn, sets the stage for the next wave of innovation. The only questions now are:   

  • What role do you want to play in helping those at your organization communicate and collaborate? 
  • What steps can you take to expand how the AV technologies people rely on enhance their ability to do great work? 

Because everything is about to change.

Attend InfoComm 2024 in Las Vegas to hear Joe Pham speak on this topic. 

About Joe Pham 

Joe Pham, Ph.D., is Chairman of the Board and CEO of QSC – a leading manufacturer of audio, video, and control technology for professional applications like live events, cinemas, and corporate spaces. He previously served as Chairman of the Board at AVIXA (the international trade association representing the audiovisual industry) and President of PAMA (the Professional Audio Manufacturers Association). 

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