Choosing the best AV solution for you can be a complicated if not a sometimes confusing process – especially if your preferred integrator partner has a closer or even biased relationship with a particular brand, limiting your own visibility and knowledge of the market.
To help, AVTE is launching a new section, which gives manufacturers the opportunity to sell themselves against a like-for-like competitor. In the ring for this issue is: Barco Overture vs Sony TEOS.
There’s no points system and no winners or losers – just an opportunity to help provide a clearer and to the point understanding of what’s available in the current marketplace.
Let’s start with Sony…
Product Name: TEOS Corporate Solutions
Released: October 2017
Target Market: Sony’s ‘TEOS’ range of solutions are designed for corporate environments. They transform workspaces for employees and visitors so that working is simplified, collaboration is enhanced and facilities management is optimised. With 57 per cent of organisations viewing the complexity of today’s workplace technology as a “major challenge”, TEOS solutions can help them save time and money by creating a more efficient and productive working environment.
Used By: The customer base for TEOS solutions is extremely varied and includes any company, small to large, with AV systems. The increasingly blurred line between IT and AV means that the typical customer for TEOS can come from a variety of backgrounds – but all share the overall goal of driving maximum efficiency.
Product summary: TEOS was inspired by customers and developed through Sony’s Innovation Centre to meet one specific need: to completely transform the corporate workplace. The latest TEOS line-up includes TEOS Manage (complete workspace management solution), TEOS Connect (wireless content casting), TEOS Book (room booking solution), TEOS Reception (virtual reception solution), TEOS Remote (meeting room control solution), TEOS Tablets (professional corporate tablets) and TEOS Player (4K Android player).
What Does it Do? TEOS makes life easy for AV and FM teams, by transforming all aspects of a workplace, from receptions and public areas, to meeting rooms and boardrooms. With TEOS, products from a range of manufacturers can be easily identified and controlled from a single dashboard. Through bespoke customisation and development, Sony aims to deliver results that best meet the customer’s needs. Additional features such as integration with RFID badges, and a virtual reception were developed as a result of customer requests.
Ease of use: TEOS is simple and intuitive to use. Generally, customers require little to no training. For example, with the new ‘Email to Signage’ feature, users can quickly and easily create tailored signage without the need for any specific training or knowledge
For any further support, TEOS customers receive PrimeSupportPro, an industry leading support package that goes beyond a standard warranty to offer technical support, new features and firmware updates.
Device Control Compatibility: TEOS Manage incorporates LG SNMP protocols, Philips protocols, Samsung SSSP3/SSSP4 protocols and PJLink, meaning TEOS Manage is compatible with, and can control, almost the entire AV market.
Unique Selling Point (USP): With TEOS, Sony is creating the next generation of working. Today, there are good corporate solutions available, however all are very specialist, and not interconnected. Sony aims to be the first provider to cover all aspects of the workplace, and are therefore continually evolving the TEOS family to create a more efficient and productive working environment.
Ease of Installation: TEOS is easy to install and compatible with most existing AV solutions. Users can choose from cloud-based or local deployment of TEOS.
Management? All IP devices, Sony displays, projectors and tablets, as well as other branded devices, can be centrally controlled from a single dashboard.
Price: Affordable and scalable to meet individual customer demands. Price on application.
Where to Buy: For more information visit https://pro.sony/solutions/corporate/teos
And in the red corner, we have Barco…
Product Name: Overture
Released: Europe: February 2017 (ISE)
Target Market (i.e corporate): Corporate & Education
Used By: (a typical customer, including size): Larger Enterprise organizations and higher education institutes with 30+ rooms to be managed and controlled
Product summary: (overview of the product)
Overture is Barco’s software-based, enterprise class A/V Control and Monitoring solution that uses the company’s normal network infrastructure to manage all A/V devices. Unlike conventional systems, which use proprietary programming languages and are overwhelmingly hardware-based and distributed, Overture software only needs to be configured. Therefore the system can be set up quickly and easily. Overture is available as on premise software, as well as a cloud based SaaS solution.
What does it Do: Overture is both an A/V Control and an A/V Monitoring all-in-one solution. It offers in-room control functionality via any HTML5 capable devices, be it an in room tablet, the user’s laptop, or even BYOD smartphones. To the Facility or IT support team, Overture offers a complete application to remotely monitor and control all the rooms and their devices, significantly reducing troubleshooting time and in-room interventions. Thanks to Overture Alarms and Alerts, the support team will be automatically informed when certain events occur, e.g. a device that has an error condition or a projector whose lamp is about to be replaced. Based on those alerts, the support team can solve issues before they get noticed by the users or schedule pro-active maintenance.
Overture’s Behaviour functionality enables smart automation to the devices, rooms or even complete sites, all without any programming. A Behaviour can be set up to define what should happen when a room is powered on, or even more advanced, the behavior can be set up that the room is automatically powered on to a certain state 5 minutes before a scheduled meeting or when somebody enters the room; or the favorite behavior of the Overture team: when a user plugs a ClickShare button in his PC, which automatically powers on the display or projector and selects the right input. Overture Behaviours don’t only save time for the meeting room user, but also for the AV or IT personnel setting up the system.
To guarantee a secure application, Overture has a strong user management system, using user groups and permissions. Overture also integrates with Active Directory, both via LDAP as ADFS (SAML 2.0). Information from Active Directory is used for authentication as well as for authoriSation. Using your existing and familiar user management system, Overture’s configuration is simplified and at the same time the security of the system is increased. You can even use Active Directory attributes to restrict access to certain devices or properties of devices for specific users: based on this information, the user interface will automatically adapt for the user, a feature for which a patent is pending.
Ease of use: The ideal system in terms of ease of use is one that requires the least amount of manual user interaction. With Overture’s Behaviours this can be easily set up, although there are always cases where some interaction will be required. As the interface of Overture is automatically built using templates, a user can always expect to have the same experience regardless of room or device being used, drastically reducing the required learning curve and increasing ease of use. Also for the person installing and maintaining the system, Overture is a solution that is very easy to set up: there is no need to program anything, it’s a matter of configuring the system, following the natural and logical flow of the software.
Device Control Compatibility: To control and monitor the A/V devices, Overture is using the devices’ API (Application Programming Interface) over an IP connection. Using this approach, Overture can control and monitor practically any device. Legacy devices, that lack an IP connection, can be controlled and monitored by Overture using a converter from Global Caché, with whom Barco has formed a partnership. Overture has developed a full directory of drivers and recently developed a Driver Builder to further support new up-and-coming devices.
Unique Selling Point (USP):
- Lower total cost of ownership
- SW solution that runs on commodity hardware, no need to buy proprietary hardware
- Pricing model that follows the size of your organization
- Easy to set up and maintain, reducing installation and maintenance time
- Enterprise class by design
- An architecture that is scalable to any size of organization
- Centrally managed and configured for all rooms
- User Management and Security Integration features through Active Directory and Microsoft Exchange
- Great user experience
- Template based UI, leading to same experience, irrespective of device’s brand, moment of setup or partner that did setup
- User interface automatically adapts to the user using it
- Future-proof design easily accommodates new and legacy devices with simple configuration
Ease of Installation: Installing and maintaining Overture is not complicated at all, and takes very little time. To add a device to the system, you simply connect it to the IP network and configure it with Overture’s web-based interface. All user interfaces are automatically created, using Overture’s UI templates. The software follows a natural and logical way of working, removing the need for long training.
Management: Overture is based on well-known and mature web technologies. All user interfaces are created in HTML 5. As a result, Overture’s user interface can be displayed on any device that has proper HTML 5 support. Think of room control touch panels, room PC’s or laptops or even BYOD smartphones, enabling meeting participants to control the meeting room from their smartphone, removing the need to install an in room tablet in every single meeting room. An additional key feature is that all user interfaces are created using “responsive design”, meaning that the user interface automatically adapts to the display’s screen resolution: no need to create a custom interface for every control display used. In some rooms it will even be possible to omit a physical control interface, as the room behaviour gets fully automated through Overture’s Behaviour functionality: based on presence or a meeting room schedule, devices are automatically brought to the correct state.
Price: Overture is sold on a subscription basis. Prices start at €294 per room & per year. This price is discounted for multiyear commitments and high quantities (100+ rooms)
Where to Buy: Via Overture Certified resellers in Europe and North America. Ordering and management of the subscription is done via Barco’s Digital Engagement Platform (https://www.store.barco.com/enterprise/)