Evaride and MJ Ultra Join the HARMAN Professional Solutions Ambassadors Program

October 05, 2017

Buzzworthy pop rock trio Evaride and rising R&B singer MJ Ultra join the HARMAN family to share their talent with music fans worldwide

NORTHRIDGE, Calif.—HARMAN Professional Solutions today announced that two of the industry’s most exciting new artists—Evaride and MJ Ultra—have joined the HARMAN Professional Solutions Ambassadors Program.

Within 24 hours of announcing their formation earlier this year, pop rock trio Evaride garnered more than 20,000 social media followers before they even released a song. Part of that excitement stems from the band’s lineup of seasoned musicians, including drummer Josh Devine (One Direction), guitarist Hayden Maringer (J.Lo, Demi Lovato, Daya), and vocalist Sean Michael Murray (Green Day's “American Idiot” and RENT on Broadway).

The soaring debut single “Heartless” catapulted the band onto a national level, with Evaride recently being named iHeartRadio’s "Emerging Artist". "Heartless” was also featured on iTunes’ "Hot Tracks" and "Top New Alternative Tracks" pages, as well as Shazam's "Best New Music" playlist. Based in New York and Los Angeles, the band is planning to release a full album in 2018, and is working on a music video by acclaimed director Dale ‘Rage’ Resteghini (Fall Out Boy, Pitbull, Lil Wayne) in association with HARMAN Professional Solutions’ JBL Professional and AKG brands.

“We’re extremely excited to partner with HARMAN Professional Solutions and represent legendary audio brands like AKG, JBL and Crown,” said Sean Michael Murray. “The support we’ve received from HARMAN has been incredible, especially as we head into the studio to record our album with the backing of these great brands.”

LA-based artist MJ Ultra has quickly established himself as one of R&B’s most exciting new voices. MJ Ultra is currently promoting his debut independent album, "Ocean Drive", and recently completed an extensive European summer tour. 

MJ has also scored original songs and music videos for several films, including "Bring It On: Worldwide #Cheersmack”, Justin Timberlake's "Friends with Benefits", Kevin James' "Here Comes the Boom", and the Netflix original "#RealityHigh”. His music has also been featured on “Dancing with the Stars” and “America's Got Talent”. MJ’s latest feature collaboration with Barcelona-based DJ duo Boxinlion, "Black & White", has amassed more than 12 million YouTube views and 4 million Spotify plays. 

“The HARMAN brands have been the backbone of some of the most iconic music recordings and performances in history and I’m honored to be part of that rich tradition,” said MJ Ultra. “This partnership will enable me to further my artistic vision, and open new opportunities to connect with fans across the world.”  

The HARMAN Professional Solutions Ambassadors program gives the world’s leading artists a powerful platform to share their passion for music and audio technology. More artist and audio professional partnerships will be unveiled in the coming months—from composers and engineers to breakout stars and veteran musicians.


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Samsung Debuts World’s First Cinema LED Display

July 18, 2017

SEOUL, KOREA – JULY 13, 2017 – Samsung Electronics today announced it has installed its first ever commercial Cinema LED Screen at Lotte Cinema World Tower in Korea. Designed as a High Dynamic Range (HDR) LED theater display, the Cinema LED Screen creates a more captivating and vibrant viewing experience through next-generation picture quality and true-to-life audio thanks to collaboration between HARMAN Professional Solutions and Samsung Audio Lab.

“Through sharper and more realistic colors, complementary audio and an elevated presentation, our Cinema LED Screen makes viewers feel as if they are part of the picture,” said HS Kim, President of Visual Display Business at Samsung Electronics. “We are excited to partner with Lotte Cinema to bring this technology to theater-goers, and look forward to continuing to shape the cinema of the future.”

Stretching nearly 10.3m (33.8ft) wide in size, the Cinema LED Screen accommodates a variety of theater configurations while ensuring superior levels of technical performance, reliability and quality. The display brings the visual power of HDR picture quality to the big screen, and enlivens content with both ultra-sharp 4K resolution (4,096 x 2,160) and peak brightness levels (146fL) nearly 10 times greater than that offered by standard projector technologies. Additionally, the Cinema LED Screen’s futuristic, distortion-free presentation leverages ultra-contrast and low-tone grayscale settings to showcase the brightest colors, deepest blacks and most pristine whites at a nearly infinite contrast ratio.

To go with the stunning video technology within the ‘SUPER S’ theater of Lotte Cinema, Samsung has paired its Cinema LED Screen with state-of-the-art audio technologies from JBL by HARMAN. This integration includes powerful speakers bordering the screen, proprietary audio processing technology, and JBL’s Sculpted Surround system, producing an unparalleled sight and sound experience the way the content creators intended.

As demands within the cinema space evolve, Samsung’s Cinema LED Screen offers the versatility to expand services to meet a wider range of audience needs. The display maintains its advanced presentation capabilities in a range of dark and ambient lighting conditions. This flexibility makes the Cinema LED Screen ideal for venues wishing to use their theater space for corporate events, concerts, sports event viewing and gaming competitions.

“‘SUPER S’ theater is a new paradigm of movie screening,” said Wonchun Cha, Lotte Cinema CEO. “We look forward to working with Samsung to introduce new, high-quality technology to the movie industry in the future, and we are excited to drive customer satisfaction through an improved viewing environment that brings a variety of content to life.”

Prior to its commercial debut, Samsung ran the Cinema LED Screen through a series of the industry’s most rigorous tests to validate its performance and presentation. In May 2017, the Cinema LED Screen became the first product to achieve full compliance with the highly-esteemed Digital Cinema Initiatives (DCI) theater technology standards prior to its commercial release. This certification acknowledges the display’s ability to showcase the complete color spectrum with unaltered accuracy.


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HARMAN Showcases Newly Expanded Connected PA at InfoComm 2017

June 14, 2017

New integrated PA ecosystem automates setup and configuration of microphones, DI boxes, mixers and loudspeakers, providing exceptional ease of use and versatility for a wide range of AV scenarios

InfoComm (Booth #3201), ORLANDO— HARMAN Professional Solutions, the global leader in audio, video, lighting and control systems, including networked AV, today presented the HARMAN Connected PA at the 2017 InfoComm show.

The HARMAN Connected PA is a complete, integrated ecosystem of audio products that allows AV specialists, educators, houses of worship, small venue owners and musicians to get professional results quickly and easily via HARMAN Connected PA app, regardless of their level of experience with pro audio equipment or traditional sound systems.

“The HARMAN Connected PA is ideal for a number of pro-AV solutions, and we’re excited to have thought leaders and industry pros from around the world experience it at InfoComm 2017,” said Adam Holladay, Director, Hospitality Solutions and Marketing, HARMAN Professional Solutions. “With the HARMAN Connected PA, ioSYS technology automates setup and hardware configuration and enables anyone to achieve great sound quality, regardless of previous audio experience. And although the technology is brand new, we’ve designed the system deliberately to provide the exact same user experience to anyone who’s ever connected speakers and a mixer using analog cables.”

HARMAN’s exclusive ioSYS™ technology is at the heart of the Connected PA system, enabling products with the embedded technology to automatically recognize each other and be configured automatically with the HARMAN Connected PA app. This takes the guesswork out of setup and configuration, and enables users to consistently achieve great live sound. The Connected PA product ecosystem initially includes equipment from Soundcraft, JBL, dbx and AKG, allowing users to create systems that suit their specific needs. Compatible products include:

  • Soundcraft Ui12, Ui16, and Ui24R Digital Mixers
  • JBL PRX800 Series Loudspeakers
  • dbx DI1 Active Direct Box
  • AKG P5i Microphone
  • AKG MDAi CPA Connected PA microphone adapter

Connected PA was recently expanded with the release of the AKG MDAi CPA Connected PA microphone adapter. Featuring embedded ioSYS technology, this small and portable accessory makes the groundbreaking HARMAN Connected PA System compatible with all AKG dynamic vocal mics, as well as mics from other manufacturers. Simply attach the device to any input of a Soundcraft Ui24R mixer, then plug in a dynamic mic and mic cable for automatic recognition with the HARMAN Connected PA app and ecosystem—providing effortless set up, instant recall of performer and presets, and great sound for musicians of all skill levels.

HARMAN ioSYS technology combines the transmission of device-specific data over standard analog cables with WiFi in order to generate a map of all analog connections. By knowing the precise model and serial numbers of connected devices, the groundbreaking new HARMAN Connected PA mobile app configures input channel strips, recalls microphone presets and even recalls specific mixer settings for a performer. The system also recognizes which models of powered loudspeakers are connected to the mixer outputs, automatically automating gain staging, recalling appropriate EQ presets and even transmitting wireless access point information to link the speakers to the integrated WAP in the Soundcraft Ui Series mixer.

The HARMAN Connected PA mobile app provides one centralized interface for full audio system control, removing the need for multiple apps and GUIs. It intelligently brings together Soundcraft mixing consoles, AKG microphones, dbx DI boxes and JBL speakers into a single user interface, offering a flexible and scalable solution that makes it easy to get great sound quickly and simply. The Connected PA mobile app is now available for immediate download on both iOS and Android devices.

HARMAN Professional Solutions plans to add many new products to the Connected PA ecosystem to provide greater versatility, and will be deploying ioSYS technology across several other markets to bring the same configuration simplicity to installation and larger live sound applications.

Availability

The HARMAN Connected PA app is in public beta and currently available from the Apple App Store, Google Play, Soundcraft.com and JBLPro.com.

The Soundcraft and JBL components mentioned in this announcement are all currently available but may require firmware updates to enable HARMAN Connected PA functionality. For additional information on the HARMAN Connected PA app and ecosystem, please visit www.connected-pa.com.


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HARMAN Professional Solutions Wins NAB 2017 Best of Show Award for Studer DIOS

May 03, 2017

Innovative I/O automation software for broadcasters receives the NewBay Best of Show Award from TV Technology

Northridge, Calif. —HARMAN Professional Solutions today announced that its new Studer DIOS I/O routing software was awarded the NewBay Best of Show Award from TV Technology at the 2017 NAB Show. NewBay’s Best of Show Awards are evaluated by a panel of engineers and industry experts, and are selected based on innovation, feature set, cost efficiency and performance in serving the industry. Unveiled at NAB 2017 to widespread acclaim, DIOS is the world’s first I/O routing automation software designed to manage and simplify complex routing matrices within broadcast workflows.

“The response to DIOS at NAB 2017 has been overwhelming, and we’re honored to receive such a prestigious award,” said Katy Templeman-Holmes, Director of Solutions & Marketing for Hospitality and Broadcast, HARMAN Professional Solutions. “By managing and simplifying complex routing processes, DIOS will help broadcasters increase production efficiency, reduce common workflow errors and expand on-air redundancy. We’re excited to partner with industry leaders to ensure DIOS continually evolves to meet the ever-changing requirements of modern broadcast. This award reinforces our belief that we’re off to a great start.”

“The products nominated for the Best of Show program, now in its fourth year, provide an outstanding overview of new technology on the show floor and shine a spotlight on the very best,” said Eric Trabb, Vice President & Group Publisher, NewBay Broadcast & Video Group.

DIOS offers a number of key features that help broadcasters increase production efficiency and reduce workflow errors, including I/O routing management and automation, automated and redundant pathfinding, diagnostic notifications, transportation of baseband and IP data, offline configuration capabilities and more.

DIOS will be available in fall 2017. To learn more, visit our Studer DIOS product page.


HARMAN Professional Solutions Releases the HARMAN Connected PA App Public Beta for iOS and Android

April 26, 2017

Public beta of new mobile app provides a centralized solution for intuitive setup, configuration and control for products in the HARMAN Connected PA system

NORTHRIDGE, CA—HARMAN Professional Solutions today announced the public beta of the HARMAN Connected PA mobile app for iOS and Android, available now. The HARMAN Connected PA is a complete, integrated system of live sound products that allows musicians and performers at any skill level to quickly and easily get professional results. The Connected PA app is at the center of the system, and provides one centralized interface for full audio system setup, configuration and control for products in the Connected PA product family.  

“The HARMAN Connected PA simplifies setup for PA systems and makes it easy to achieve great live sound quality, regardless of prior experience with traditional sound systems,” said Noel Larson, Senior Global Manager, HARMAN Professional Solutions. “The HARMAN Connected PA is the first completely integrated live sound system that makes it easy to set up and get professional sound in minutes, and the groundbreaking HARMAN Connected PA mobile app provides essential controls for the entire system. With the app and an iOS or Android device, musicians can streamline speaker and mixer setup, get amazing vocal and instrument sounds with genre-specific presets, instantly recall settings by just plugging in and much more. Now, musicians can focus on what matters most—playing music.”

Connected PA products are embedded with HARMAN’s exclusive ioSYS™ technology, which enables the different elements of the PA to recognize each other and be configured automatically with the HARMAN Connected PA app. The app automatically identifies and configures connected equipment, provides setup wizards for quick and easy system configuration, and offers access from a variety of devices, including iOS and Android tablets. Compatible products currently include:

  • Soundcraft Ui12*, Ui16*, and Ui24R digital mixers
  • JBL PRX800** loudspeakers
  • dbx Di1 active direct box
  • AKG P5i microphone
  • AKG MDAi dynamic microphone adapter for Connected PA

HARMAN Professional Solutions plans to add additional new products to the Connected PA family to provide musicians with greater versatility and adaptable performance. 

*Requires firmware update to v6905 or higher   **Requires firmware update to v1.0.1.91 or higher

Availability
The HARMAN Connected PA app is now available from the Apple App Store and Google Play. Download the app, check it out with your compatible product and let us know what you think. 

The Soundcraft and JBL components mentioned in this announcement are all currently available but may require firmware updates to enable HARMAN Connected PA functionality. For additional information on the HARMAN Connected PA app and compatible products, please visit Connected-PA.com.


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HARMAN Professional Solutions Helps the University of Richmond Deliver an Incredible Student Experience

April 26, 2017

A complete networked HARMAN AV solution helps deliver a high-impact, immersive and media-rich experience for visitors and prospective students

RICHMOND, Va.—The University of Richmond recently installed a complete AV system by HARMAN Professional Solutions in its new Queally Center, a cutting-edge facility that serves as a welcome center for guests and unites the offices of admissions, financial aid and employer relations. In order to create a memorable experience for visitors and meet the needs of students throughout their collegiate journey, the University of Richmond’s Information Services team equipped the building with an integrated HARMAN AV solution made up of AMX control systems, JBL Professional speakers and Crown professional power amplifiers. Today, the university uses the building-wide HARMAN system to provide an immersive experience for prospective students—and help current students pursue professional opportunities.

“We standardized on AMX over ten years ago, and it has been an excellent platform,” said Doug West, Assistant Vice President of Information Services, University of Richmond. “The HARMAN system is incredibly flexible. Professors can walk into any smart classroom on campus, immediately configure the room for their lecture needs, and deliver high quality audio and video presentations. Although the technology capabilities in the Queally Center go far beyond those of our standard classroom spaces, we still wanted to extend that same ease-of-use to the new facility.” 

The University of Richmond consistently ranks among Ivy League schools as a top academic institution, and more than 20,000 prospective students visit the campus each year. In 2014, the university started planning construction for a new building that could illustrate the university’s cutting-edge learning environment and support current students in the first steps of their professional careers.

Combining the offices of admissions, financial aid and employer relations, the Queally Center was designed as a true multi-use facility. The 56,000-square-foot building includes a welcome center with interactive touchpoints, smart conference rooms that enable students to go on virtual interviews with potential employers, staff offices and a multifunction 500-seat assembly room at the heart of the facility.

Designed in collaboration with the university’s Communications and Digital Engagement team, the building entrance opens into a hallway lined with brilliant digital displays, interactive information kiosks and a striking 9-panel video wall. A central AMX touch panel controls each of the displays and interactive touch points. Prospective students can use the kiosks to explore campus maps, watch videos about academic programs and connect with the university through social media channels.

At the same time, the gorgeous wall-mounted displays feature imagery of student life and important moments in university history. The result is a technology-rich facility that has an instant impact on visitors—and is highly functional for the faculty, staff and students who work in the center every day.      

The centerpiece of the Queally Center is a premium 500-seat assembly room. The venue includes three 12-foot screens with short-throw projectors and four supporting 82-inch displays for presentations. The assembly room also features an integrated sound system made up of JBL loudspeakers and Crown amplifiers, which provide pristine sound reinforcement and flexibility for a wide range of events. Four AMX touch panels allow admissions staff members to manage the different space configurations. Master control of the facility is also accessible on an iPad via the AMX TP Control application.   

To make the most of the space, the room can be converted into two or three individual meeting rooms via dividing walls that descend from the ceiling. Each space can be quickly configured with its own unique audio zone and video display, making the assembly room a perfect starting point for daily campus tours and breakout sessions for prospective students. The Office of Alumni & Career Services’ Career Gallery and Employer Suite is also located in the new building. Here, students meet with potential employers in interview suites, which are equipped with in-person and virtual interview capabilities, including displays, JBL speakers and state-of-the-art video-conferencing equipment.

“The AMX touch panels throughout the building make it easy to control all of the AV systems—from the displays throughout the building, to the conference rooms and out to the courtyard,” explained West. “In the assembly room alone, there are twelve source points that can be routed to seven content destinations, and all of that is seamlessly controlled by AMX equipment.”

Before the new facility existed, the University of Richmond offices of admission, financial aid and employer relations were in separate locations. Embarking on daily campus tours, seeking information about academic programs and tuition, and connecting with future employers required multiple trips to different buildings. With the Queally Center and the end-to-end HARMAN solution, these services and experiences are unified in a single building that not only meets the needs of all three departments, but also provides a breathtaking experience for visitors to campus.

“Because HARMAN offers a tightly integrated solution, we’re able to handle very complex A/V switching behind the scenes in a streamlined, elegant manner,” West concluded. “It makes a huge difference to presenters when technical staff are not available.”

 

Products Used:

AMX Audio Visual Control Systems
JBL Professional Speakers
Crown Professional Power Amplifiers
 

ABOUT UNIVERSITY OF RICHMOND

University of Richmond blends the intimacy of a small college with exceptional academic, research and cultural facilities and opportunities usually found only at large institutions. It offers a unique combination of undergraduate and graduate programs through its schools of arts and sciences, business, leadership studies, law and continuing studies. Richmond is recognized by virtually every college guide as one of America’s best private, liberal arts universities. University of Richmond is one of just a few colleges in the nation to be both need-blind in making admission decisions for domestic undergraduate students and committed to meeting 100 percent of demonstrated need for all accepted students.

 

*Photo Credit: University of Richmond


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HARMAN Professional Solutions Recognized with Audience Honor for Best Location-Based Experience in Ninth Annual Shorty Awards

April 24, 2017

NORTHRIDGE, CA – HARMAN Professional Solutions was awarded the Audience Honor for Best Location-Based Experience for its JBL EON ONE Take contest and truck tour. The campaign featured a national truck tour, with onsite demonstrations, live performances and a singer/songwriter contest, combined with interactive social media and web campaigns to maximize reach.

EON ONE Take contestants could record a single track of their original song in "one take" on the HARMAN Mobile Recording Truck. The entries were later evaluated by our panel of judges and 20 semi-finalists were selected. The 20 semi-finalists were narrowed to the top 10 finalists by Quincy Jones, Andrew McMahon In The Wilderness and Bryan Bradley, SVP & GM, Entertainment, HARMAN Professional Solutions. Once the judges selected the top 10 finalists, the performances were posted on the eononetake.com microsite and JBL Professional's YouTube channel, where the public could vote for their favorite artist by “liking” their video.

“It is an honor to be acknowledged for our innovative approach to a fully integrated campaign, which took our message on the road with an extensive national truck tour and contest,” said Stephanie O’Neill, head of social media and content marketing for HARMAN Professional Solutions. “This was a fantastic team effort across our organization to highlight the JBL EON ONE all-in-one professional PA system and grow our social media presence. Thank you to everyone who voted for our work and helped us receive this recognition.”

The Shorty Awards, now in its ninth year, were the first awards show to honor social media. By constantly evolving along with the changing landscape of social media, The Shortys remain the most prominent award show of its kind. The Shorty Awards continue to recognize the most influential, popular, and culturally relevant brands, organizations, agencies, campaigns and influencers across social media.

Ninth Annual Shorty Award Brand and Organization winners were announced in AdWeek and will be celebrated at the star-studded awards ceremony on April 23 in New York City.

Winners and honorees of the Shorty Awards were selected by members of the Real Time Academy of Short Form Arts & Sciences (rtacademy.org), comprised of experts in advertising, media, entertainment and technology. Members of the Academy include Luanne Calvert (CMO of Virgin America), Jonathan Mildenhall (CMO of Airbnb), Kimberly Bryant (Founder, Black Girls CODE), Shiza Shahid, (Cofounder and Global Ambassador, The Malala Fund) and Bonin Bough (Chief Media and eCommerce Officer, Mondelez International), among others.

The Shorty Awards also introduced the inaugural Shorty Audience Honor this year, a new honor given to the brand or organization whose campaign received the most votes from the public.

 

ABOUT THE SHORTY AWARDS

The Shorty Awards honor the best of social media and are produced by Sawhorse Media (http://sawhorsemedia.com/), a New York-based technology startup. Sawhorse also created and runs Muck Rack (http://muckrack.com/), the leading software platform that helps Fortune 500 companies, brands, PR agencies and journalists build relationships, monitor news and measure the impact of media.


Studer by HARMAN Introduces New DIOS I/O Routing Automation Software for Broadcasters

April 20, 2017

Innovative I/O automation software manages and simplifies complex routing processes to help broadcasters increase efficiency, expand redundancy and reduce common workflow errors

NAB (Booth C146, Listening Room S218LMR), LAS VEGAS—Studer by HARMAN today introduced DIOS, the first I/O routing automation software designed to manage and simplify complex routing matrices within broadcast workflows. DIOS offers a number of key features that will help broadcasters increase production efficiency and reduce workflow errors, including I/O routing management and automation, automated and redundant pathfinding, diagnostic notifications, transportation of baseband and IP data, offline configuration capabilities and more.

“I/O routing is an extremely complex and time-consuming part of the production process, and unexpected hardware failures often require urgent changes to routing equipment in an attempt to stay on the air,” said Katy Templeman-Holmes, Director of Solutions & Marketing for Hospitality and Broadcast, HARMAN Professional Solutions. “DIOS automates the entire I/O routing process, enabling broadcasters to simplify production workflows, reduce human error during configuration and daily operation, and ensure that programs stay on the air in the event of an error. Furthermore, HARMAN is working with industry leaders and technology partners to continually evolve DIOS to meet the needs of customers and ever-changing market demands.”

After input and output locations are specified, DIOS identifies pathways and automatically routes data. When errors occur, DIOS can reroute data through automated redundant pathfinding and find an alternative pathway when an I/O route is unavailable. If no pathways are available, DIOS will provide options for disconnecting inputs currently in use, so users can determine which option will have the smallest impact on the production. Furthermore, DIOS provides users with automated diagnostic notifications, including instantaneous notice of pathway limitations or hardware failures. DIOS also recalls previous routing configurations, so users can easily make changes to equipment and quickly switch between productions without having to manually reconfigure I/O pathways.

DIOS works seamlessly with IP networks, baseband networks, or both. In hybrid IP/baseband, DIOS manages the routing through the heterogenous network – an often complex network that is made up of IP and baseband components. DIOS is format agnostic, essentially acting as a translator for the various types of data routing through a multitude of products. DIOS also enables broadcasters to bring different standards and APIs together into one ecosystem and connect third-party equipment that previously operated independently. With the ability to manage all types of input and output data, DIOS is a scalable solution that can adapt as facilities grow and needs change.

As equipment capabilities are maximized, DIOS enables broadcasters to be dynamic with their workflows and consolidate hardware. By identifying all potential pathways and routing data using the most efficient route, DIOS allows broadcasters to utilize I/O pathways that were previously unavailable in a static model, opening up an entirely new world of workflow options.  

DIOS also allows broadcasters to easily repurpose equipment within their facility for other applications. With the centralization of control, users only need to make changes in one system instead of multiple systems, reducing the amount of time it takes to set up productions. The ability to build shows offline and pre-configure I/O routes in advance further decreases set up time. Plus, auto recognition of previous I/O routes enables broadcasters to make a smooth transition back to previous configurations.

Availability

DIOS will be available in fall 2017.


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HARMAN and IBM Watson Internet of Things Introduce Cognitive Rooms that Bring Connected Experiences to the Consumer

April 19, 2017

In-Room Concierge Capabilities Tap Watson to Deliver New Levels of Experience and Simplicity to Hotels, Hospitals, Conference Rooms and Other Key Locations

Companies Collaborate at IBM’s Watson Internet of Things Headquarters in Munich Germany to Drive Continued Innovation

ARMONK, NY & NORTHRIDGE, Calif. 19 April 2017—HARMAN Professional Solutions and IBM (NYSE: IBM) Watson Internet of Things (IoT) today unveiled Voice-Enabled Cognitive Rooms. Using IBM’s Watson artificial intelligence (AI) technology and HARMAN AKG microphones, JBL speakers and AMX AV control and switching systems, the companies bring highly connected experiences to medical facilities, corporate offices, hotels, cruise ships and other hospitality environments.

In addition to the current in-market solutions, HARMAN is part of IBM’s cognitive collaboratories based in its $200 million Watson IoT global headquarters in Munich. In this facility today, HARMAN is demonstrating the capabilities of its in-room cognitive concierge in a conference room setting. At the same time the HARMAN team is also working with IBM designers, researchers and others to put IoT into the hands of enterprise customers.

Today IBM’s cognitive technologies are embedded into HARMAN soundbars and alarm clocks with other form factors being developed, that users can interact with using natural language. Now consumers can simply ask questions or issue commands with their voice when in a room. These requests are then sent to the Watson cloud and Watson IoT services, which work with HARMAN’S technology to allow people to easily control their in-room subsystems without having to physically perform any manual tasks and trying to figure the new systems out. For example, now when an employee enters a conference room they can start a video conference, launch a presentation and more using their voice. In the future, these tasks will be executed automatically based on what the system has learned about the employee based on previous meetings. The system gets smarter about the person and their preferences over time. 

These capabilities, which are on display at IBM’s Munich office, are being used by customers today in including Thomas Jefferson University Hospital where patients can interact with in-room speakers that are connected to the IBM Watson IoT Platform. As a result, they can enhance their hospital experience by operating lights and window blinds without any manual assistance while asking questions about the hospital facilities or requesting background information on their physician all via natural language.

“We’re solving a very distinct problem in hotel, hospital and conference rooms, where people experience unfamiliar environments yet need to perform very simple tasks, such as changing room temperature, adjusting the lighting, opening the blinds, initiating conference calls or launching a presentation,” said Kevin Morrison, Senior Vice President of Enterprise Solutions for HARMAN Professional Solutions. “Voice-Enabled Cognitive Rooms by HARMAN make for a natural and intuitive experience, especially for weary travelers or patients with special needs.”

These voice-enabled cognitive rooms also function as an in-room concierge that can answer general questions or site-specific questions developed by the facility and featuring custom answers created by staff. For example, a hotel guest could ask “What time is checkout? ”or “Where is the gym?” while a hospital patient could ask “What are the hospital’s visiting hours?” or “Can you tell me more about my doctor?” Leveraging HARMAN’s expertise in API integration, users can even employ Watson for service requests, including amenity replenishments, restaurant reservations, late checkout, room service, shuttle service and more.

“The enterprise and entertainment market possibilities are massive, as IBM and HARMAN seek to connect people more intimately with their environments through cognition and natural language processing,” said Harriet Green, General Manager, Watson Internet of Things, Customer Engagement and Education, IBM. “The result of this collaboration is simple, we are leveraging Watson and AI to bring connected environments to a multitude of locations, from hotels to hospitals and offices where they are transforming every day experiences. We look forward to continuing our work with HARMAN by developing new IoT-powered innovations.”

Leveraging key Watson APIs such as Natural Language Understanding and Speech to Text, these rooms also provide users with limited mobility and vision impairment a closer level of interaction with their environment. Now with Watson, guests can speak naturally to the system without rigid syntax requirements, using simple commands like “would you turn off the lights?”

Voice-Enabled Cognitive Rooms also feature enterprise-grade software tools that can help in-house technical and guest service staff members increase operational efficiency. For example, housekeeping staff can simply say, “Send up an engineer to fix the shower” in their native language. Watson’s multilingual capabilities enable organizations to accommodate a wide variety of users from different countries with an ever-growing list of supported languages. 

Like other solutions on the market, the system is activated by a “wake word.” However, unlike other devices, the wake word for Voice-Enabled Cognitive Rooms by HARMAN is fully customizable. This allows businesses an additional opportunity to brand their experience. In addition to JBL speakers, the system includes AMX NX-1200 Integrated Controller, the AMX Massio™MCP-106 6-Button ControlPad and the AMX Metreauۓ-Button Ethernet Keypad. 

Availability

Voice-Enabled Cognitive Rooms by HARMAN for enterprise applications will be available in mid-2017. 

About IBM Watson IoT

IBM is an established leader in the Internet of Things with more than 6,000 client engagements in 170 countries, a growing ecosystem of over 1,400 partners and more 750 IoT patents which together help to draw actionable insight from billions of connected devices, sensors and systems around the world. For more information on IBM Watson IoT, please visit www.ibm.com/iot.


Industry Leaders Showcase Broadcast and Production Technologies by HARMAN Professional Solutions at NAB 2017

April 17, 2017

Solutions from JBL Professional, Crown Audio, BSS Audio and Studer featured in partnership with Avid, Dolby Laboratories, DTS and All Mobile Video

NAB (Booth C146, Listening Room S218LMR), LAS VEGAS—HARMAN Professional Solutions today announced it is partnering with key industry leaders to demonstrate innovative broadcast and production solutions at NAB 2017. Avid, Dolby Laboratories, DTS and All Mobile Video will all showcase HARMAN solutions at their respective booths to provide attendees with a firsthand look at the industry’s latest broadcast and production technologies. These solutions include JBL Professional sound reinforcement systems, Crown amplifiers, BSS Audio processors and Studer mixing consoles.

“We are pleased to partner with other industry leaders at NAB 2017 to deliver the industry’s most innovative and advanced solutions for broadcast and production,” said David McKinney, Vice President of Hospitality and Broadcast, HARMAN Professional Solutions. “Not only does HARMAN provide complete end-to-end systems, our solutions integrate seamlessly with other leading technologies to provide customers with greater choice, flexibility and power.”

HARMAN Professional Solutions products will be featured by the following partners at NAB 2017:

Avid
Avid delivers the most comprehensive tools and workflow solutions to create, distribute and monetize the most watched, loved and listened to media in the world. Visit the Avid booth to learn about cutting-edge audio production workflows in the Dolby Atmos format. The Avid main stage will feature a full Dolby Atmos production presentation using a complete HARMAN audio system, including JBL AM7212/00 loudspeakers for screen channels, JBL AC28/26 speakers for surround sound, JBL ASP6125 subwoofers, Crown DCi multi-channel network power amplifiers and a BSS Soundweb London BLU806 signal processor.

A second Dolby Atmos production demonstration will feature the award-winning Avid Pro Tools | S6 modular control surface, a Pro Tools | HDX system, and a full JBL audio system with JBL 7 Series master reference studio monitors, a JBL Intonato monitor management tuning system, JBL subwoofers and Crown DCi multi-channel network power amplifiers. (Booth SU902)

Dolby
Dolby Laboratories creates audio, video, and voice technologies that transform entertainment and communications in mobile devices, at the cinema, at home and at work. Dolby Atmos delivers moving audio—sound that can be precisely placed and moved anywhere in three-dimensional space, including overhead. It brings entertainment alive all around the audience in a powerfully immersive and emotive experience.

Stop by the Dolby booth to experience the latest in audio innovation from Dolby with a full Dolby Atmos demo, featuring JBL 7 Series master reference studio monitors, JBL subwoofers and Crown DCi multi-channel network amplifiers. (Booth SU1702)

DTS
DTS is a leading provider of audio solutions for mobile devices, home theater systems, cinema, gaming, automotive and beyond. With its technology integrated in more than two billion devises globally, DTS provides incredibly high-quality, immersive and engaging audio experiences to listeners everywhere. DTS will be conducting demos of their DTS:X immersive audio technology using an 11.1 JBL system every day of NAB between 12:00–2:00 p.m. in the Capitol Room of the Renaissance Hotel.

All Mobile Video
All Mobile Video is one of the industry’s preeminent audio/visual production companies, with a fleet of innovative mobile production trucks that are equipped with the most advanced equipment and technology on the market. Visit All Mobile Video to see Zurich, their largest and most powerful HDR and 4K production truck. Zurich is equipped with a 72-fader Studer Vista X with an Infinity core processor, built-in Lexicon processing, and three Studer compact stage boxes. The console also includes 11 MADI cards and 2 Dante cards. (Booth N302VR)


HARMAN Professional Solutions Donation Aids in The AFM & SAG-AFTRA Fund Mission To Compensate Musicians

April 14, 2017

NORTHRIDGE, CA – HARMAN Professional Solutions recently supported The AFM & SAG-AFTRA Intellectual Property Rights Distribution Fund’s mission by giving 25 AKG K92 headphones to the 501 C-6 organization. These new headphones will allow The Fund’s research department to better review performances so that vocalists musicians and other music creators can benefit from all the varied uses of their recordings. The K92 headphones provide studio quality sound and reveal even the subtlest nuances which is essential for The Fund’s research team.

As a not-for-profit organization, The Fund’s an independent entity whose purpose is to collect and distribute royalties pursuant to the US Copyright Act and from various foreign territories. The Fund has agreements with 29 countries involving 35 different collecting societies, that provide performance royalties in digital media (subscription services, webcasting, home taping), broadcast rights and record rentals in some foreign territories to non-featured performers (session musicians and vocalists), as well as audiovisual rights to both featured and non-featured performers.

“Our research team needs to be able to identify each performer on a recording which requires very detailed sound quality,” said Julie Sandell, Manager of the Fund’s Sound Recording Division. “The AKG K92 headphones bring out the subtlest audible nuance in a recording which allows us to hear every performer. This is key to ensuring that performers receive appropriate compensation for their work.”

The AKG K92 over-ear, closed back headphones feature professional-grade 40mm drivers that offer high sensitivity for greater output, wide frequency response for detailed sound, and low impedance for compatibility with personal music players as well as professional gear. The closed-back design features an innovative acoustic chamber, which eliminates audio bleed and preserves privacy, keeping the sound in the ears of even the most mobile listener.

“We take pride in supporting professional musicians and performers as well as their work,” said Bryan Bradley Senior Vice President & General Manager, Entertainment, HARMAN Professional Solutions. “AKG has helped create the iconic sounds of some of the world’s most well-known recording artists, engineers and producers so it is only fitting that AKG headphones are now being used to help artists receive their proper recognition. It is a small way for us to give back to this community.”

 

ABOUT AFM & SAG-AFTRA Intellectual Property Rights Distribution Fund

The AFM & SAG-AFTRA Intellectual Property Rights Distribution Fund (Fund) is a 501c (6) not-for-profit organization that distributes statutory royalties to session musicians and background vocalists for their performances on recordings that are broadcast on satellite radio, webcasting and other digital formats. The Fund collects these domestic royalties pursuant to the U.S. Copyright Act, and also distributes Private Copy royalties (recordable media such as CDs, DVDs, etc.) pursuant to the U.S. Audio Home Recording Act (AHRA). Additionally, the Fund collects royalties from agreements made with foreign collecting societies that include digital broadcasts, webcasting, private copy, and audiovisual works (television and motion pictures broadcast on television and exhibited in theatres) 

The Fund distributes in excess of $60 million annually in domestic royalties and foreign royalties pursuant to agreements with more than 30 collecting societies in foreign territories.