Defining the IoT market, and figuring out how to make money in it, was near the top of the agenda at ProSource’s annual Spring Meeting last month.
The event, held by the $4.5 billion specialty tech buying group in Dana Point, Calif., brought together some 300 dealers, custom integrators and vendors, including members of Pro- Source’s new commercial integration partner, CI Edge.
Top of mind for members was getting a handle on the IoT business. “People are looking for guidance,” explained ProSource president/CEO Dave Workman. “The pricing is way below where integrators like to play.”
To figure out a pathway, the group created a special committee comprised of ProSource members, vendors and outside consultants, which held the first of what is likely to be an going series of gatherings. Their goals, said Workman: to first identify the scope of IoT products and services for the do-it-for-you channel, and then develop an alternative approach to the burgeoning business that will make it more profitable.
Elsewhere on the product front, CI category sales grew 10 to 20 percent last year and audio was up 10 percent. In a state of the industry address, Workman noted that average selling prices (ASPs) are stable in audio, and that such new technologies as 4K switching and Dolby Atmos, and renewed interest in retro products like turntables, will keep the category healthy.
And while TV was “a little bit of a struggle” with tepid demand for 4K, “the high-end theater business is making a nice return,” Workman noted, driven by high-performance projectors, 4K Blu-ray and UHD OLED displays.