While the Internet has changed the way we do almost everything, not much attention is always paid to the importance of audio and how it continues to evolve. Fortunately, that’s changing: the Audio Engineering Society (AES) is defining new standards for delivering high-quality audio for online meetings. A recent report from the AES Technical Council details five new audio trends that could mean we’ll soon have access to better audio quality. These trends will help optimize audio streaming and delivery for better online meetings and presentations.
1. Audio Quality Keeps Getting Better
Audio quality has steadily improved over the past decade, thanks to the arrival of 4G wireless technology. Today, nearly all modern mobile devices can handle different communication bands. VoIP, paired with a powerful online meeting solution like GoToMeeting, has driven the demand for uninterrupted streaming. Switching between modes and system performance must be flawless, because past performance obstacles are no longer acceptable.
In addition to better output quality, audio recording capabilities now offer the ability to support spatial audio, such as a stereo set. As noted in the report, usability advancements have come in many forms, including noise adaptive technology, content playback and even voice control.
2. Next Generation Audio Coding Has Arrived
Speech and audio coding are converging, and it’s the latest generation of codecs combining them. A codec is a program that encodes (or decodes) a stream of digital audio data. According to the AES technical team, this synthesis results in a universal solution that provides us with optimal performance for both music and speech signals.
Additionally, newer codecs facilitate compressed audio formats that support seamless switching between lower and higher bit rates. This ensures your audio remains uninterrupted, even under ever-changing channel conditions.
3. High Resolution Audio Is a Thing
High-resolution audio is migrating from the professional and “audiophile” markets to the mainstream. The emergence of the 5G wireless standard over the next several years will adjust to the higher bit rates needed for high-res audio streaming.
4. Headphones Keep Getting Better
Music lovers have gravitated towards high-tech headphones for years. Now, everyone is following suit in search of the best headsets for conference calls! New hardware developments promise better transducers, converting electric signals into sound and improving headphone quality.
For those who prefer a cordless existence, wireless connectivity is also improving. Due in part to a desire for convenience and innovative product design, you can expect major improvements to your favorite pair of wireless headphones down the road.
5. Optimizing Sound with Audio Over IP
Ah, good ol’ VoIP. We’d be willing to bet you’ve been using it for years. Part of what makes VoIP work is Audio Contribution over IP (ACIP) standards, which help to optimize the decoding of audio over the Internet. Manufacturers have already implemented the ACIP II standard, promising to drive even more seamless audio streaming.
It’s no secret that technological advancements ebb and flow in every industry. As audio technology continues to improve, online meeting organizers will benefit from both clearer sound and more fluid streaming connectivity. For attendees on-the-go, the new 5G wireless standard will help to ensure an uninterrupted user experience on the receiving end.
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