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Streaming and Strata | Amazon Alexa | Today’s wireless world

Streaming and Strata
Gone are the days of Bruce Springsteen lamenting about 57 Channels And Nothin’ On.  Today our content options seem endless – movies, television series, music – and all that competition is keeping the price point pretty darn attractive.

So, which is the best deal for you? Well, keep in mind what type of content you’d be streaming and check out this great article we found at New Tech TV. Then, give us a call to help you understand your choices based on your current, or future, home entertainment system! It’s all about connectivity and compatibility. You’ll want that streaming service easy to access from your trusty remote!
For you serious movie, TV and music buffs who want it all, there’s Kaliedescape. Delivering your library of favorites in True 4K Ultra HD with HDR (Learn more about 4K and HDR on our recent blog, Kaliedescape’s Strato displays better video quality than most commercial theaters. And with over 11,000* movies and 2,000* TV seasons to choose from, it offers the best online selection available in various formats. Curious? Come by for a demo!
*in the United States.

alexaAmazon Alexa. A Virtual Assistant and Caretaker?
Alexa, ask Lutron to open my shades. Alexa, play music. Alexa, ask fitbit what my resting heart rate is now. Ahhhhh.
How do you make a smart house smarter? You get it a virtual assistant. One that can order a pizza. Now THAT’s a SMARTHOME! Alexa lives in the cloud and is automatically updated. She comes with Echo, a far-field enabled device that activates upon hearing a “wake word”. Echo also happens to be a 360° omni-directional speaker. Ok, it’s not whole-house audiophile quality, but it has its place and offers a pretty cool way to stream your favorites through a portable device.

So why do we love it? Always at the forefront, Lutron, the leader in lighting and shade solutions and controls, is Alexa-compatible. Have Alexa adjust your lighting levels through a Caseta Wireless, RadioRA2 or HomeWorks QS Lighting Control System. And while it’s convenient that she can adjust your window shades and temperature, there’s a key life-safety feature not to be ignored. Imagine the peace of mind of having Alexa for those “aging in place” with limited mobility. Voice-activated technology can restore freedom and grant a measure of security. Alexa, what’s my heart rate now?


Today’s wireless world – build a better network
Network infrastructure is the backbone of all of your operating and communication systems, enabling connectivity and management across your enterprise, whether residential or commercial, wired or wireless, or a hybrid. It’s hardware and software and services. As its name implies, infrastructure is the platform that sustains a structure. Now, imagine a major interchange with on ramps and exit ramps, detours and warning signs, roads shooting off to far destinations. Every ounce of concrete and steel beam is carefully designed to carry the load. Ok, so that’s a bit exaggerated, but the point is that each connection point, each pathway, is essential to the seamless operation of your network.
A wireless local-area network (WLAN) uses radio waves rather than ethernet cables to connect devices to the internet and network. When first introduced, wireless connectivity lacked in speed and, most felt, in security. Today’s wireless networks, however, are robust and feature security protections. They are cost-effective in that they save installation and cabling costs. They are also expandable, easy to set up, and offer increased mobility and collaboration as the systems allow for workers to connect from anywhere with ease. The next level of Wi-Fi connectivity is a wireless mesh network, an emerging technology that utilizes a mesh of nodes (small radio transmitters) that talk to each other, creating a network blanket across a large area.
But that’s a bridge that spans across our “interchange”.
A Hybrid Network, on the other hand, can mean one of two things. Yes, it can refer to a wired/wireless combination as it contains two or more communications “standards” in one design, but it can also mean a network design that is comprised of two or more lines of product. Both definitions offer plusses and minuses.

No matter the type, networks are designed and engineered structures providing a freeway of bandwidth and throughput for critical data. We don’t require concrete and steel to meet the performance needs of today’s, and tomorrow’s, connected homes and collaborative offices, but some engineering and ingenuity is a must. Give us a call. We’ll answer your AV/IT/IP questions and make sure your system is running on a solid foundation!