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AV managed services: What’s the outlook for 2023?

Kateryna Dubrova, market analyst at Futuresource Consulting, offers an insight into the AV managed services landscape

Kateryna Dubrova, market analyst, Futuresource Consulting

Support services across the pro-AV sector have always been essential to channel providers’ portfolios. The concept of managed services offerings by integrators and MSPs is mature. However, the recent transition to software-enabled tools, the emergence of cloud services for AV, and fully managed/hosted services are opening new opportunities. 

Though mature, Futuresource Consulting views the AV managed services (AVMS) market as dynamic and ambiguous, with established actors monetising on vendor lock-in concepts. In contrast, we see IT and SaaS players successfully targeting the pro-AV market by treating AV devices no differently to traditional endpoint connections and offering software-enabled tools and enhanced monitoring capabilities. Arguably, one of the most disruptive trends currently facing the AVMS market is the deployment and use of software and platforms to push the management, monitoring and operation of an array of vendor endpoints into a digital environment, especially a cloud-native environment.

That is where exciting change occurs, as system integrators (SIs) attempt to capitalise on changing market needs. Some providers believe that the ‘physical installation’ and SLA will remain a cash cow and are resistant to business model change. Most AV integrators are not just struggling with reassessing their go-to-market strategy as a channel and integration partner, but they also appear to be behind the curve on understanding, evaluating and monetising consulting services that improve the end-user experience. Most SIs are fixated on monitoring the capabilities of the managed services; others, though, are slowly transitioning towards managing the operating environment.

This leads to an increasingly important trend in the AVMS market; the focus on end-user experience. AV has always been about the audio and visual experience and less about the fluidity of services needed for end customers. While IT is much more discreet in functionality, AV requires more intense guidance for the end user. The pro-AV sector is transitioning to newer service offerings that concentrate on delivering experience and business outcomes. End-user experiences drive productivity and constitute the non-tangible value from AV investments, which enterprises demand. The future outlook for AVMS has to be around the ability to deliver user experiences underpinned by software tools and supported by a shift in the SI’s business model and value proposition.