What was the vision behind the creation of Stem?
The seeds of Stem were planted by the realisation that there was something missing in the audio-conferencing industry. We started by looking at the technology people use in their day-to-day life and how they use it. We found that the simplicity and intuitiveness of consumer devices was not present in solutions for conference rooms.
Instead of gathering a group of engineers to explore what the next best speakerphone is, we went on a global tour to ask everyday users, IT professionals, consultants, designers and architects what was missing in current solutions. After surveying thousands of individuals, we identified 6 common pain points that Stem needed to solve for our customers.
We also quickly realised the impossibility of delivering a single device that could solve all these problems. That was how the Stem Ecosystem was born, created from identifying solutions for common customer problems, bringing a simplistic and robust solution for conference rooms that customers can deploy and use without any required training.
Stem was acquired in 2020 by Shure. What are some of the developments you have seen over the past 12 months?
On the surface, customers see the Shure & Stem websites integration and Shure branding on the Stem software. The Stem Ecosystem is also fully integrated into Shure’s systems portfolio, and it is available to our channel partners alongside other product lines such as the Microflex Ecosystem.
From an operational perspective, the fresh energy and agility of Stem, combined with Shure’s knowledge on performance and quality, is having a very positive impact on the customer experience.
In recent firmware updates, we improved sound performance and reliability for customer products already in the field. In following updates, we will continue to fine-tune performance and add new features that give customers more value. We will continue to put the customer first, and act on their needs and feedback.
Now that Shure and Stem Audio are fully integrated, what are the new benefits that the Stem Ecosystem can offer?
As part of the Shure product line, the Stem Ecosystem is available globally on Shure RDCs and via resellers. This means better availability and faster delivery and service for our customers.
Additionally, the regional Shure sales and support teams around the world are now a point of contact for customers and provide the great service that Shure is known for, to Stem customers in their own language and time zone.
How is Stem Ecosystem different compared to Microflex Ecosystem?
The Stem Ecosystem empowers in-house IT/AV teams with a solution that they can effortlessly deploy on their own, leveraging knowledge and experience they already have. The Stem ecosystem devices can be mixed and matched as needed to enable high quality conferencing in any room, no matter the shape, size, or configuration. For large-scale deployments, enterprise customers often leverage the service of retailers or integrators.
The Microflex Ecosystem is deployed through Shure systems integrators who have been certified on the products and can install, configure, tune, and service the system as well as integrate with third party devices such as control systems.
It is possible that both systems may be deployed to very similar rooms, but the difference would be what path or distribution channel they followed to get there.