Integrate Expo 2022: Everything you need to know

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Integrate Expo 2022: Everything you need to know

integrate expo 2022
Words by Sam McNiece

Returning to an in-person format, teaming up with the annual Security Expo, and previewing this year's Women's Council, you won't want to miss Integrate Expo 2022

Integrate Expo, a hub for the AV industry with opportunities to see new products, attend talks, network with fellow integrators, and get a feel for what’s coming next in the industry is happening in person for the first time in three years next month. 

After a challenging time for a large portion of the AV industry, this trade show extravaganza is back in full force, this year teaming up with the annual Security Expo trade show which will uncover further opportunities for AV and networking integrations to the wider industry.

Read up on all the latest interviews, features and columns here.

To fill you in about what’s happening at Integrate Expo 2022 happening at the ICC Sydney ICC (International Convention Centre) on August 17-19, we had the pleasure of chatting with Soren Norgaard, Integrate’s Commercial Manager for an overview of the expo, what an average punter would expect to gain from going, and a preview of this year’s Women’s Council.

Hi Soren, what are you most looking forward to from this year’s Integrate Expo?

“What makes me and the team tick is actually delivering events. Even though we’ve tried to do so for the last couple of years, we haven’t been able to do that physically. We have delivered a couple of digital versions of Integrate but it’s not quite the same as in person. 

“The key thing for us is reuniting the industry, because the industry hasn’t been together for quite some time. I was lucky enough to attend an overseas event ISE (Integrated Systems Europe) and there was a real buzz just getting back together and there’s quite a lot of things that have happened in the industry over those two years since we last held an event in person. The whole situation around AV technology when it comes to working remotely and how it plays into that, there’s a lot of technology that has come into that space. 

“The key thing is getting the industry back together and creating an event for the industry.”

Would you be able to tell us about this event?

“This is the first time we’ve been able to produce a physical event in three years. It’s not for lack of trying or willingness to run a live event. We tried to get one off the ground last year but there was a new variant that hit, things got locked down again and it just became too difficult with the whole interstate thing, getting the industry together with reluctance to travel and fear of getting stuck in another city.

“It’s pretty exciting, we’re in the position where we managed to pull together quite a nice balanced showcase of who’s who within the industry. It’s also the first time we’ve run the Integrate and Security expo’s side by side. So there’s a fair bit of crossover between those two brands and there’s a reason why we’re doing that.”

Can you elaborate on the Security Expo collaboration?

“That show is about biometrics, CCTV, access control, and even a lot of AI-driven technology. Stuff that overarches between the two, big control rooms and control centres, where you’ve got large amounts of panels and monitors. Those control rooms could be anywhere from shopping centres to authorities such as fire departments and police and are a good example of how AV and security work together. There’s also more of a focus on networks and network security. A lot of the big integrators and consultants, when they’re setting up smart buildings or smart cities, they’re operating in both the security and AV universes anyhow.”

As a punter, what would I expect to gain from attending?

“You would gain product knowledge first hand. You would be able to learn about what’s happening from an industry and trends perspective. There’s a fair bit of education happening at the event with a big tech talks theatre with over 14 hours of content over three days which ranges the whole gamut of AV – be it audio, displays, unified communications, state of the industry panel, challenges the industry has faced from supply chain. A lot of people are struggling to finish projects due to componentry and lead times that are quite expensive.

“I think the networking aspect is very key, having conversations with like-minded people. A lot of the conversations will go, ‘This is the challenge I had’ and someone will pipe in and go, ‘I had that problem a few years ago and this is how I solved it’, so it’s a communal platform for sharing knowledge.

“It’s really hard to actually get hands-on experience with a physical product in a virtual space. It’s not the same as hopping on YouTube and looking at a product demonstration as you’re not getting that physical feedback. You’ll pick up things you didn’t expect because you’re not going there with a specific product in mind. Expect the unexpected!”

One of the 14 hours of content is the Women’s Council panel. Can you speak to that and also diversity within the AV industry?

“The AV industry, like many others in the tech space, is dominated by males and the latest stat I heard was around nine per cent of people in the AV industry are female. It’s actually a really good career path and there are lots of opportunities. We’re trying to promote and spread a greater understanding amongst females how they can get into the industry. Every year we have a panel that addresses that and you can hear from some of the females who have been successful and enjoyed a great career in that space. 

“This year the theme is break the bias – which is also the International Women’s Day theme – and it’s a recognition that the gender bias still exists in society, workplaces, and even subconsciously in many minds. The panellists talk about this and how they’ve overcome some of those challenges, things to be mindful of, and encourage younger women into the industry.”

Wanting to make the pilgrimage to Integrate Expo 2022? Head here to register.