Welcome to Strata-gee!

Photo of Ted Green in Spartan sweatshirtI’d like to welcome you to Strata-gee.com – where you’ll find current stories on the tech industry updated every week. We try to present you with a unique perspective…unique because we are NOT journalists writing news stories. Rather, we are industry participants, writing about the latest in tech based on our extensive knowledge and experience.

There is a tremendous amount of information and insight here. Feel free to poke around. Click on “tags” or keywords in the Tag Cloud in the sidebar on the right to find all of our articles on that specific tagged subject. You can also use the Search box at the top-right to quickly search for topics based on keywords.

When you find a story that interests you, contribute to it by leaving a comment. This is not my site…it is our collective site, meant for interactive use and idea sharing to benefit the entire Strata-gee community. We hope you’ll join us.

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Happy hunting, Strata-gists!

Ted Green
Strata-gee Founder & Editor

Crestron’s Partnership Universe Expands Creating New Experiences for Users

Crestron HomeTime lifestyle image

Launches HomeTime Integrated Home Conferencing WFH Solution

No doubt about it, Crestron is on a roll. They have recently had a series of announcements – not of the ho-hum type, but of the more meaningful, perhaps industry-changing type. Now we learn about another new partnership being announced – Crestron is working with Logitech and Zoom to deliver HomeTime, an upgraded home video conferencing solution perfect for this strange new work-from-home (WFH) world in which we all find ourselves.

See more about Crestron HomeTime…

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And BAM! Just Like That, Savant Acquires GE Lighting to Become a Major Lighting Supplier

Savant and GE Lighting logos

WSJ Says Deal Valued at Around $250M

On Wednesday, we learned that Savant Systems Inc. (Savant), has acquired the lighting business from none other than the mighty GE. Terms of the transaction were not released, but the Wall Street Journal reports that “the transaction valued the unit at around $250 million, according to a person familiar with the matter.” GE has been a major lighting provider for over a hundred years.

See more on this HUGE Savant & GE deal…

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Sandy Gross Steps Down from GoldenEar; Reflects on His Illustrious 50-Year Career

Photo of Sandy Gross of GoldenEar
GoldenEar founder Sandy Gross

Telling me, “I’m just taking some time to do those things I’ve been wanting to do for a long time,” Sandy Gross, renowned² founder of three major speaker brands (Polk Audio, Definitive Technology, GoldenEar Technology), has stepped down as President Emeritus from his most recent one – GoldenEar. In a telephone interview this week, Gross shares with Strata-gee readers his reasons for making this announcement now, and reminisces on his nearly 50-year career building three popular speaker brands now in the homes of many thousands of consumers.

See more on the resignation of Sandy Gross…

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Integrators Rejoice! Peace Chimes are Ringing – Crestron & Lutron are Working Together

Lutron and Crestron are now working together

OK…I don’t want to overstate this, but over the last few years, integration industry giants Crestron and Lutron have been…shall we say…a little competitive with each other. Maybe not directly so, but certainly there have been skirmishes over several lines of products. Over time, the two companies’ line extensions have been progressively encroaching more and more into each other’s territory.

Well, that’s over now, as Creston announced last week that it has forged “an alliance” with Lutron – integrating several of the lighting company’s products into the Crestron Home ecosystem. Dealers who sell both brands are undoubtedly rejoicing – Hallelujah! Peace has come!

Read more on the Crestron & Lutron alliance…

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Shocking 30+% Drop in Housing Construction Starts; But a Turnaround May Be Lurking

a machine gets ready to start constructing a housing project

Existing Home Sales Decline as Well

I’ve been saying for a while now that really, really tough economic data was coming. Even though it was obvious to many of us that the economy was crashing – thanks to COVID-19 – it takes time for backward-looking statistics to catch up. Well, now they’re starting to catch up and with overall residential housing construction starts dropping an eye-popping 30.2% in April…they are ugly.

But read on to see why one piece of data seems to suggest that a housing turnaround make be lurking in the near future – or is even already here…

Learn more about this new data on the housing market…

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Mike Park, Key Partner and CTO of James Loudspeaker, Retires

Mike Park of James Loudspeaker
Mike Park [Click to enlarge]

Mike Park, a key partner and Chief Technology Officer (CTO) of James Loudspeaker, retired this month due to health issues, the company has announced. It would be hard to overstate Park’s influence in the growth and success of James Loudspeaker. As a key role player in the company for the last 15 years, Park has made many contributions to the company’s technology direction and product development, driving an era of rapid growth that ultimately led to James’ acquisition by Sonance in 2019.

See more on Park’s retirement from James Loudspeaker…

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Sound United and HTSA Partner to Expand Market Availability of Top Audio Brands

Sound United logo

Sound United LLC, the parent company to brands such as Denon, Marantz, Polk Audio, Definitive Technology, Classé, and Boston Acoustics, announced on Tuesday that they have joined forces with Home Technology Specialists of America (HTSA), a leading trade consortium of custom integration dealers. This new partnership will expand availability of some of the top specialty audio brands throughout North America, thanks to HTSA’s extensive network of top dealers.

See more on this Sound United and HTSA partnership…

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Rocky Mountain Audio Fest, A Popular High-End Event in October, is Canceled

Photo of the venue where the now canceled Rocky Mountain Audio Fest RMAF was to take place
The Gaylord Rockies Resort where the now-canceled RMAF 2020 was to take place [Click to enlarge]

On Tuesday, promoters of the Rocky Mountain Audio Fest – a well respected and popular event for the high-end specialty audio segment – announced that they were cancelling the show scheduled for October 2-4, 2020 in Aurora, CO. Like many other industry events this year, the reason was due to the disruption caused by the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic.

See more on the RMAF cancellation…

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With Original Event Canceled, IFA Now Says It Will Hold a New Live, In-Person Show in September

IFA 2020 is an all-new 3-day event in September 2020

Promoter Says It Is Putting ‘Health and Safety First’

Saying they are putting “Health and Safety first,” IFA announces they have received the appropriate government approvals to hold a live, in-person trade show event in Berlin this coming September. The announcement was a dramatic departure from their previous announcement in April cancelling this very event. But will anyone choose to attend?

See more on IFA effectively un-cancelling their show…

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Consumers Look Through COVID-19 Lens to Form an Opinion of Your Brand

COVID-19 consumer Brand Sentiment survey header

The race is on as marketers conduct myriad surveys to try and understand how the forced self-isolation resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic is affecting the consumer psyche now. Also, marketers want to determine if there will be any lingering effects in consumer sentiment – and perhaps more importantly, spending patterns – down the road, when life begins to return to some sort of normal again.

One thing marketers have discovered is that consumers are making judgments about your company and your brand, by looking at you through a COVID-19 lens – which, depending on your actions, could be either positive or negative.

See how your response to COVID-19 can make or break your relationship with consumers…

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