DSF PRESS RELEASES


Capital Networks Appoints New Account Executive

Capital Networks has announced that Heather Doherty Platel has joined the company as Account Executive, Digital Signage.

In her role, Heather will be responsible for new regional and national account development, the ongoing management of customer relationships and will be actively engaged with the various Capital Networks industry vendors and partners.

This is Heather’s second stint with Capital Networks, having previously been a highly valued member of the Production Services team, prior to leaving to pursue a career in sales in 2006.

“Always a favourite of our clients and fellow staff members, we couldn’t have been more pleased when Heather accepted our offer to return to the fold as the newest member of our sales team”, said Jim Vair, President. “The sales experience she’s picked up combined with her intimate first-hand knowledge of our Audience™ platform is going to be invaluable to both us and our clients”.

Heather can be reached at 905-946-1122 x247 and hplatel@capitalnetworks.com

For further information, please contact Jim Vair, President. 905 946-1122 x231.


Case Study: Upper East Tennessee Human Development Agency

Summary

  • Upper East Tennessee Human Development Agency (UETHDA) needed to quickly share information with country residents.
  • The boards display real-time information about housing and UETHDA events in 8 community centers.
  • Project included Xhibit signage systems, content management software (CMS), content integrations and professional services.
  • UETHDA saw a marked increase in community engagement and employee satisfaction.

Introduction

Upper East Tennessee Human Development Agency (UETHDA), a social services organization serving 22,000
households in Tennessee, has implemented a digital signage network powered by Mvix in 8 counties.

The displays in the 8 Neighborhood Service Centers are empowering residents to build better communities by providing easy access to important information and community resources.

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Why should a business use digital signage?

Digital screens allow any business to easily showcase their products, services or any other content for that matter, helping them to stand out and engage with more customers.

A digital screen provides the most flexible banner in the world. Available in all shapes and sizes, from single large format screens to multi-screen video walls, free standing kiosks, shelf edge displays and tablet devices, choose one or pick any combination to suit your needs.

Digital signage solutions are being exploited by most business owners today to give them an edge over their competitors. There are many different benefits digital signage will have on your business, which can help you become more successful within your industry.

Benefits of digital signage

A wider range of products and services can be shown e.g. a restaurant could utilise a series of digital menu boards that display a different menu as the day progresses – i.e. breakfast, lunch and dinner.

With simple cloud-based Content Management System (CMS), a single or an entire network of screens can be managed remotely.

It is impressive and will engage more customers at the point of sale, or make an atmosphere more lively or unique, with a powerful influence on buying decisions.

To boost awareness and sales, it can be used as a tool to interact with customers as an entertainment medium e.g. waiting areas in an airport or train station to communicate messages to your customers. It can also be used as a medium for your employees e.g. internal communications, meeting rooms.

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Digital content evolves from multi zones to simple full screen

During the brief arc of digital signage history, something significant happened that is just now having major implications on the way messages are delivered on screens – Yahoo launched (1995) and, not long after that, Google launched (1998).

The two search engine giants spent a few years finding their footing, but now it’s clear which site has come up on top. Google, the No. 2 most valuable brand according to Forbes, has 76 percent of the search ad market. That number is expected to grow to more than 80 percent by 2019, according to eMarketer.

There are a host of reasons we gravitate toward Google for quick searches – algorithms, key words, complementary services and ease of use among them. Google has been winning the search wars without bells and whistles, guiding its users to their destination via a simple search box. That’s it.

Since Google’s launch and subsequent domination, we’ve become accustomed to that simplicity, and content presentation on digital screens has followed suit.

According to Ryan Cahoy, managing director of Rise Vision and a member of the DSF board, digital screens 20 years ago were full of moving boxes, tickers and as much information as you could fit.

“Everyone was making their own Bloomberg TV. How many boxes and zones could you create? It was driven by the technology that started the industry. Everyone was conditioned to that technology and seeing how much data they could put out there because they thought it was how they could get the best investment on something that was new and expensive,” Cahoy said. “Now, we’ve all had a chance to take a step back.”

And while the technology is still a critical piece in a successfully executed digital signage strategy, it’s not driving the industry on its own anymore.

“Now it’s about how you use the technology, present it, create the user experience. As the industry grew and different people with different perspectives came in, we could focus on the bigger picture and we realized we were doing it wrong,” Cahoy said.

Multi-zone screens such as those made common by Bloomberg TV are becoming less common.

Multi-screen presentations, he adds, give users a bad experience. If a client asks how many zones they should have, “the answer should be one zone, one message,” Cahoy said.

If they want more than one message, they should consider getting more than one screen.

Cahoy adds that is not always practical. Universities, for example, tend to approach communication through committees.

“Everyone has a different idea and they tend to compromise with, ‘Well, since we spent this money, let’s put it all out there,” he said.

One alumni foundation his company worked, for example, with wanted a directory, weather, sports, news, events and wayfinding information pushed through its digital screen.

Users tend to take no action from a busy screen because the messaging is too complex, according to Ryan Cahoy.

“We were up to 12 to 15 buttons on the screen. What happens is users have all of these choices and they inevitably do nothing because it’s too complex of a message.  And, the donor’s purpose was lost because everyone was thinking about the shiny, new toy instead of coming up with a strategy about their goal or purpose,” Cahoy said.

The only exception to having multiple zones is if the screen is in a common area, such as a food court, where users have the opportunity to digest more content for a longer period of time.

“But even then, in general, a simple message that is well done has far more impact,” Cahoy said.

One simple message in this subway ad.

Does having a single screen affect the longevity of a message? The rule of thumb for Cahoy is allowing enough time to read the message backwards.

“You can have a slide that just says, ‘hello,’ and a slide with 10 bullet points. You’re going to get a much better use of digital signage if each message is timed to its optimal length,” Cahoy said.

For those who still feel the need to put the “kitchen sink” of information out there, he said the solution is to instead provide users with an action item on the digital screen — guide them to a website or a mobile app where more it makes more sense for more information to be located.

“Think of the display as a sign post that is guiding users to their mobile phone because that phone is with everyone everywhere, and if I’m passing a sign quickly, I’m more likely to pull out my phone and keep going than I am to stick around to wait for information on the screen,” Cahoy said.

“We should really think about every mobile device as a digital sign, whether we create it or not, and the display should push users to that device.”

Cover photo provided by Vimeo.


Enhanced Savings at DSE for Members

The Digital Signage Federation has announced that the DSE is now offering 25% off educational packages for DSF members.  You must be an active member and qualify for the educational packages.  To register and receive your discount go the the Digital Signage Expo 2018 Registration page.  If your company is not a DSF member, sign up today for the discount.

 


Fans in Digital Signage Players Are a Lose/Lose Proposition

by Jeff Hastings, CEO of BrightSign, LLC

Many people think of fans as essential components for cooling heat-generating electronics devices such as digital signage media players. Fans are loud and make devices bigger than they need to be, but they’re a necessary evil, right? Wrong! As far as media players are concerned, they are actually completely unnecessary and a telltale sign of inefficient design.

I am a firm believer that fans should be avoided at all costs. Why? Let me count the ways… First of all, a fan is a moving part, therefore a potential point of failure. When a fan does fail, you probably won’t know until the entire device overheats and fails. Second, the fan itself requires power, which generates additional heat. Lastly, fans are not an essential part of electronics if the device is designed properly. They add no operative value – they’re simply a cooling system. That’s why you’ll never find a fan inside a BrightSign media player – a policy that I am passionate about. Our Series 3 players are more powerful than ever before, yet still there are no fans.

Specifically in digital signage, there are simple ways to avoid the need for a fan. Start by designing products that produce less heat in the first place. Product designers should be sure not to use bigger processors than necessary. Although it’s counter-intuitive, using a lightning-fast general-purpose processor may slow the system, rather than speed it up. Using appropriately specified processors with efficient, dedicated software can enable all the functionality required. A purpose-built, commercial-grade OS (rather than a consumer-grade OS, like Android or Windows, which is multipurpose and clumsy) can drive low-powered efficiency. Use fast, solid-state storage that can be returned to a low-power idle mode quickly. There are many strategic ways to produce less heat and creative methods to dissipate heat that do not require a flimsy, breakable fan.

If you are considering a player or SoC that needs a fan to cool it, be sure to also consider the potentially much higher TCO as a result of the fan breaking and the system overheating. That’s simply not a risk we’re comfortable passing on to our customers.


About the Author

BrightSign CEO Jeff Hastings joined BrightSign in August 2009 while it was still a division of Roku Inc. In late 2010 with digital signage activities growing so rapidly, BrightSign became a separate firm. The holder of eight U.S. patents, he also has a history of tech industry leadership, including as president of mp3 pioneer Rio.


Greater Columbus Convention Centre gets North America’s first LG installed Direct View LED powered by Signagelive

Introduction

The Greater Columbus Convention Centre are wrapping up a 22-month expansion and renovation project, and it could not be more beautiful, according to Experience Columbus. The $140 million dollar changes include:

  • Adding 37,000 square feet of exhibit space
  • Upgrading finishes and aesthetics in meeting rooms, ballrooms, and public spaces
  • An expansive two level open atrium
  • Full exterior renovations including a new 800 space parking garage connected to the convention centre by a covered skybridge
  • Displaying more than 150 pieces of local art

The opportunity for digital signage

  • Use digital signage to direct, wayfind, and entertain (featuring a Mondrianesque inspired wall with 6 display screens)
  • The main digital feature, that you cannot miss, is the 7ft x 60ft digital video wall that greets you in ’The Connector’ which a large corridor that connects the north area of the convention centre to the south.

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IMAX project leverages digital signage throughout VR arcade experience

In August 2016, IMAX started a project that helped thrust virtual reality into the mainstream – the IMAX VR arcade. Mashable described it as an experience that is “indistinguishable from a normal movie theater when you enter in the lobby,” but extraordinary once you enter the “inner VR facility,” which is equipped with different VR equipment.

Bobby Kelley, managing director at PixelFly, was part of the project from launch to completion. PixelFly’s role was to recommend hardware, including displays with media players and a sound system for the entire building. Kelley’s team designed then installed equipment and provided basic training to the IMAX team to run it.

According to Kelley, the project was developed specifically to be a leader in VR experiences, beyond what’s been offered by other VR arcades and home gaming systems. Specifically, the project was meant to re-create experiences that coincided with IMAX’s movie portfolio, “so one can sort of participate in the movie,” Kelley said.

There are also other games that are part of the project that are not movie related.

PixelFly’s signage is a large part of that experience, Kelley said. The moment customers walk in, they see two video walls to the right. On the left, the space opens to seven 55-inch 4K animated “movie posters,” telling them what experiences are playing today.

Behind the ticket counter is an 86-inch 4K monitor with “showtimes” available. Then, as they move to the waiting area, they see four more 86-inch 4K monitors showing commercials for upcoming experiences, short how-to videos on how to set up once inside and quick tips. Once their showtime is available, an ambassador walks the player to his pod, which is an 8-by-8-foot cubical, where they’re greeted by a 43-inch touchscreen to both choose options and launch the experience, as well as let a friend see what they see within the VR headset.

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Billboard Trade Association Statement on Supreme Court Rejection of Scenic America Appeal

October 16, 2017 (Washington, DC) — The US Supreme Court today denied Scenic America’s appeal of its failed legal attack on digital billboards, ending a four-year legal battle.

“A decade ago, a federal agency responded to questions from States – which is routine — about a new technology known as digital billboards. The courts concluded that federal guidance to the States was appropriate,” said Nancy Fletcher, president and CEO of the Outdoor Advertising Association of America (OAAA).

In 2007, the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) released a four-page guidance memo to states seeking advice on how to regulate digital billboards. It suggested display durations of four to 10 seconds and urged avoidance of glare. Digital billboards typically display static messages for six or eight seconds in rotation.

Anti-billboard group Scenic America sued the Federal Highway Administration in 2013, and its parent agency US Department of Transportation. The lawsuit, in federal court, claimed the federal agency violated procedure because its guidance was actually a de facto rule that warranted public comment and that digital billboards violate federal law because of their modern lighting.

US District Court Judge James E. Boasberg dismissed the case in 2014, with prejudice. Scenic America appealed.

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Self-Service Association ADA Initiative

The self-service and kiosk industry association forms ADA committee and working group and meets with governmental standards departments.

EASTLAKE, Colo.Oct. 11, 2017 /PRNewswire/ — The Kiosk Industry Group Association has formed an ADA committee and an ADA working group. And in November travel to Washington, DC to meet with the U.S. Access Board, the group responsible for writing ADA regulations. The idea is to work with the Access Board on an ongoing basis to help them better define regulations. We are also working with the ATMIA (www.atmia.com) as well and the ETA (www.electran.org) in this regard. Participation in the working group is open to all interested parties.

The ADA committee currently consists of Olea KiosksKiosk Information SystemsFrank Mayer and AssociatesKioWareTurnkey Kiosks and iPadKIosks.

At the same time this month the featured in-depth article is on ADA , the Final Rule, current government actions and relevant liability actions.

Excerpt:

Some of the biggest challenges self-service transaction machine deployers face is the degree of interpretation that must be applied to some of the regulations.  How many accessible units and what level of accessibility constitutes acceptable access?  Another is new regulations and retrofitting existing units, said Craig Keefner, manager for Olea Kiosks.

“Complicating retrofits can be the issue of recertifying for UL,” Keefner said. “One change to the overall machine can require the new configuration to be re-certified. If someone like Walmart has to change all of its self-checkouts, that’s a big change.”

In other news this month (https://kioskindustry.org/news):

  • Telemedicine partnership Olea and AMD announced
  • Turnkey Kiosks Make Big Updates
  • Improved Android management software by KioWare released
  • Nanonation promotions
  • New kiosk printer section w/ Microcom, BOCA & new member KFI
  • Elo announces new Wallaby line of kiosks

New Members

  • ELO
  • Visual Planet
  • Assistra Technology
  • KH Custom Printer
  • Digital Business Consulting

About the Kiosk Industry Group

The Kiosk Industry Group is a news and marketing association for self-service and kiosk manufacturers. It is for the benefit of kiosk manufacturers, developers, resources and client companies who are involved in self-service transaction machines (SSTM). News about the industry and by the industry is published on our website when it is relevant to companies that deploy or may deploy self-service, or to companies that support those deployers with hardware, software or applications. The Kiosk Industry Group has been active since 1995. Our audience this year on the website is 50,000 (human). Visit https://kioskindustry.org for more information.

Article originally posted on PR Newswire.