The audiovisual technology world is full of acronyms, from IPTV to HEVC, SD-HD and UC. They all mean something – they are just abbreviations. But haven't we reached the point where terminology confuses rather than clarifies?
Unified communications (UC) has been around for a while but the actual concept of it continues to evolve. And bringing together a number of technologies that will work together, don't we also refer to that as connectivity, convergence, or collaboration?
When customers contact an SI with a view to using their skills and expertise, do they actually ask for UC? I doubt it.
Digital signage, dynamic signage, screen media and IPTV are more cases in point. Are these all different technologies, different descriptors or could they all be summed up with the simple term "digital media"?
Yet most of us use many digital devices and technologies – computers, TV, music, phones, cameras and so on – so this term "digital" has now come to describe what is almost a way of life.
"Digital media" is a neat way of encompassing everything from the webinar and the videoconference to the information screens in travel termini and live streaming of a music concert or football match.
By hanging on to old terms or inventing new ones, we are simply making it more difficult for customers to ask for what they need from resellers.
The level of technical knowledge and the sophistication of consumer products today mean that customers understand what they can get in the business environment. And we should be using the same concise and straightforward terminology to describe it.
Resellers are practised at asking customers the right questions and recommending products in language the customer will understand.
Surely when media is easier than ever to download, access and view, whether we are in the office, on the road, at a conference, in a public place or at home, it does not need to be complicated by the use of too many mystifying terms.
Mike Cuckow is EMEA and Asia-Pacific sales director at Cabletime
View pictures of all of last night's fights
Acquisitive comms provider swoops on Frontier Voice & Data and StoneHouse Logic
Cybersecurity firm rakes in £3.6m for unwanted unit
Results, reaction and pictures from last night's CRN Fight Night