AV Systems Mag : An E-Magazine for the AV and Automation Industry


 

AV Systems Mag was an e-magazine for the AV and Automation Industry. This was their website for several years.

Content is from the site's 2012 archived pages offering just a brief glimpse of what the e magazine provided its readership.

There are a number of AV magazines available on the web. We like this one: https://www.avinteractive.com/ which describes itself as ...
AV Magazine acts as the bridge between the channel and the end-user, and our mission remains the same 43 years on – to educate, inform and inspire. We deliver authoritative content with integrity; that will strategically transform businesses across the globe and address the issues that shape this innovative industry.
OR
Consider AVNetwork at: http://www.avnetwork.com which is part of New Bay providing multichannel marketing solutions and information to communities encompassing over 5 million professionals and nearly 8 million enthusiasts centered around three large technology driven interrelated markets: Television & Video, Entertainment & Educational Technology, and Music.

 



But for now take a glance back to 2012 when AV Systems Mag was giving their readers lots of fascination feature articles, interviews, and news about the V and Automation Industry.

 

Interviews

 

Interview with Brightsign's Jeff Hastings about their new HD media players 2012

Brightsign's New HD Media Players

Jeff Hastings - BrightSign

 

1. Give us a quick overview on the new HD player/controller products and technically what sets them apart from other options?

This is a refreshed product line – improved and more affordable. Updated HD models have an improved media handling platform, a smaller form factor, and are lower-cost than ever before. Technically, they provide

  • Faster JPG performance (2x faster)
  • Better video-to-video performance
  • Approx. 20% smaller form factor
  • Price cut by 23% on high-end HD1020 model; 12% on entry level HD120

2. Digital signage doesn't exactly have someone close at hand all of the time so how do you ensure they don't suffer from the "blue screen" and suddenly go blank?

All BrightSign products are purpose-built for digital signage with a solid-state, non-PC platform that has no moving parts to fail. In addition our players run on a slim, robust OS designed specifically for running digital signage, not a suite of PC applications. Because of this, BrightSign products completely eliminate PC issues such as system crashes, “blue screens”, the need to reboot and exposure to viruses because they do not run on Windows operating systems. Being designed, tested and developed for the digital signage task at hand, means BrightSign players deliver to the "three 9's" in reliability - 99.9%. BrightSign's free BrightAuthor software also includes monitoring and reporting capabilities via the BrightSign Network so customers can check on players in the field. The players also have software on them that is checking the health of the system and making sure the unit does not get into a non-functional state. If it detects problems, then the device will reboot and the player will be back up and running in about 30 seconds.

3. What are the heat and power considerations for the media players' installation/operation?

BrightSign players are a green signage solution requiring a fraction of the power PC's require. BrightSign players require only about 5-7 watts vs. 70-90 watts for an average PC, and heat is not an issue given its low power consumption and solid-state design. Think of a nightlight vs. a 65 Watt light bulb – you would touch the nightlight bulb but not the 65 Watt light bulb! The solid-state platform also allows the controller to be installed directly on or near the displays themselves instead of in temperature and ventilated controlled rooms. Given there is very little heat to be dissipated from the unit, we don’t have to put fans in the device which add noise, are prone to failing, and consume power themselves.

4. You emphasize that the BrightSign digital signage solutions are PC-free. What exactly does that mean? What are the benefits to the user?

BrightSign devices are solid-state, which means no moving, or "spinning" parts. That alone accounts for a huge increase in reliability in the field. They are purpose-built for digital signage, which means there's no wasted processing power, unnecessary investment, added maintenance requirements and unwanted complications as with a PC. The user benefits from an affordable solution that does what it's supposed to do, and free signage software (BrightAuthor) that's simple and easy to use. The embedded operating system eliminates the need for the very frequent OS and virus updates that are done to increase the security of typical PCs since that is the target of hackers.

5. Do the players support HTML5?

No.

6. What external control options are available: e.g. RS-232, Vesa power, GPIO?

RS-232, GPIO, USB, Ethernet for UDP command controls, web server on box for diagnostics and control, CEC, SD slot for SDHC or SDXC.

7. Do the players support touch screens?

Yes, they do.

8. Can the players access local network content?

Yes, via BrightSign Local File Networking and Simple File Networking. This allows you to connect our device to a local network or the Internet and remotely update the content and schedule presentations. We support a broad range of media from .mov, .jpg, .mpg, xml, etc.

9. Which content authoring and management tools are supported?

We provide and support BrightAuthor and the BrightSign Network. In addition, our open platform allows our partner companies to easily integrate with our solutions for custom applications and for enabling seamless operation of our partner’s software through ours and vice versa. We currently partner with (in alphabetical order) easescreen, Mood Media, Premier Retail Networks Inc. (PRN), signagelive, SignChannel by Scala, and Wovenmedia.

10. Do the players support remote firmware update/reboot, etc.

Yes, with our BrightSign Network solution, administrators can easily manage remote players, send firmware updates and change settings all without having to physically go to the installed unit itself. They can also do this with the diagnostic web server, local file networking, and simple file networking.

11. How difficult is it to master the signage software and what is its added cost?

BrightAuthor is a PC software application for BrightSign that makes creating, publishing and managing BrightSign presentations simple and dependable. It is the central application for building and distributing presentations, as well as managing an entire network of remote signs. BrightAuthor has a very easy and intuitive with a visual-based interface that uses drag-and-drop conventions and has a wealth of digital signage features so that even a non-technical user can master creating and managing presentations instead of an IT person. It is also free of charge to all BrightSign customers. It is built so that if you want to build a simple playlist you can have your playing up in running in less than 5 minutes.

12. Can the creative content producer, marketing manager or location manager change the mix of content/times of day screen images?

Yes. Anyone using BrightAuthor or the BrightSign Web UI can update content and scheduling.

13. You mentioned you have Wi-Fi enabled units so wiring issues are eliminated but how do I manage signs/content across town, across the country, half way around the globe?

You manage your network of signs using BrightAuthor and/or the BrightSign Web UI. There are a variety of networking options available, ranging from free to hosted at a nominal cost.

14. Is it possible to manage the content distribution in the cloud?

Yes, using the BrightSign Network or BrightSign Network Enterprise Edition.

15. Are there typical applications and places where the BrightSign HD controllers and digital signage are used?

BrightSign HD controllers are beginning to show up in virtually all industry applications including hospitality, retail, museums & attractions, government, corporate, transportation, entertainment, bars & restaurants, education. Applications include digital menu boards, synchronized video walls, POP displays, interactive merchandising and product demonstrations, museum exhibits, social engagement and promotions.

16. When we sat down at DSE last month you mentioned that BrightSign, your content development/integration partners are seeing more interest in customers blending digital signage and social media. Can you explain what you mean by that?

Social media is prevalent in our daily lives in more ways that we realize. One example of how BrightSign has become involved with digital signage and social media is our recently announced partnership with Roqbot, an award-¬winning business music streaming service and social jukebox. The Roqbot service, BrightSign internet-connected players, and a free smartphone app are combined to enable bars, restaurants, cafes, gyms, retail chains and other public venues to engage their visitors and enhance their experience with the music of their choice. Customers use the Roqbot App to browse available music, make requests and vote on songs in the queue. BrightSign, in turn, streams, buffers and plays back the music, and importantly, drives the signage to display corresponding album art, music queue, and promotional messaging as determined by the venue’s management. The solution drives revenue and engages customers in a very social way, while reinforcing the venue’s promotional efforts. San Francisco's Bar Basic has reported increased traffic, longer dwell time and a 26 percent boost in sales. Many of Bar Basic's customers have said that they come to the bar because of Roqbot.

17. We have seen recent articles that say people who do mobile device product research on their smartphone most of the time visit a store to make the purchase. If that is the case how are the digital signage systems/solutions reinforcing that purchasing decision or maybe even expanding the sales opportunity?

Even though people have researched the products, they want to touch and see the products at retail. The final purchase decision is made in-store and sometimes even right at the checkout counter. Communicating the benefits and value of a product right up through the final purchase is very important in retail sales. And there is no better way to do that than with digital signage!

One great example can be seen in the use of our BrightSign TD1012 tabletop battery operated tabletop displays. Such digital signage gives retailers the flexibility to move their signage displays off the wall and place their messages where they're needed most ¬ on merchandise tables, shelves, desktops and check-out counters. Retailers can update networked displays at a moment's notice and make a real impact at the point of purchase. According to Forrester Research, online sales have not created the negative effect that was initially expected. Forrester estimates that about $917 billion worth of in-store sales were "Web influenced" in 2010 and they predict that number will grow to $1.4 trillion by 2014. Apparently, consumers are researching the products they're interested in on the Web but are still seeking the in-store experience for the actual purchase. For retailers to remain competitive with online sales, they must create an enriched shopping experience that is engaging, informative and entertaining. Digital signage plays a vital role in cost-effectively delivering this experience. Add in placement flexibility and networked updating capabilities and you have an effective retail sales tool essential for motivating consumers and staying ahead of the competition.

About Jeff

Jeff joined BrightSign in early 2010 with more than 20 years of experience in the digital media marketplace.  Before heading the worldwide digital signage/kiosk controller operation, he was Corel’s president, general manager of digital media. Prior to that he was general manager of the consumer video division of Avid and president of M-Audio, the musician/audio professional tools firm. Holding eight patents and computer sciences degree from Purdue, Hastings is a frequent author and speaker on leveraging computer technology for consumer information, education and entertainment applications.

 



Featured Articles

 

In our second article on Digital Signage, we look at display technologies.

Mark Anderson - AVSystemsMag.com

 

Display Technology

For the purposes of this article, we’ll assume an indoor 2D application. Let’s assume you’ve opted for a large flat panel display (rather that a projector), so the first question is what technology? There are three main contenders:

  • LCD (cold cathode ray tube back lighting)
  • LED (either edge-lit or back-lit LCD)
  • Plasma

OLED will be a fourth choice towards the end of 2012 (for those with deep pockets). There are a lot of articles on the differences between these technologies, so we’ll just concentrate on the key factors that should be considered for digital signage. For comparison, I chose a current commercial (more on this later) LCD, LED and Plasma from Samsung.

The three main factors to consider are:

  • Brightness
  • Contrast ratio
  • Viewing angle
  • Power consumption

Brightness

As many digital displays will be installed in high-ambient light environments the brighter they are the better. Their job is to stand out and get the message across.

Contrast Ratio

True contrast ratio (i.e. one that matters) is calculated by dividing the brightness of peak white by the brightness of black on a calibrated display. Unfortunately, most manufacturers now quote “dynamic contrast ratio” and many fail to mention “dynamic”. Dynamic contrast ratio is marketing fluff. Instead of measuring the darkness of the screen when it is on (i.e. the backlight is on), the manufacturers measure the black level in standby mode. Unfortunately, in the world of marketing, when one vendor quotes higher (artificial) numbers, the rest have to follow or risk losing sales. A higher contrast ratio is achieved by having brighter whites and darker blacks. Today, Plasma wins on the darker black front, but OLED will surpass even that.

For displays in high ambient light environments, contrast ratio can pretty much be ignored (as long as the brightness is adequate). In these kinds of environment, the internal reflections off the screen are much brighter than the screens internal black. Remember, the black cannot get any blacker than the screen is when off. I have a Pioneer Kuro Plasma, but in the daytime, when the display is off, the screen is a definite gray, rather than black. At night, when I’m watching a movie with the lights dimmed, it’s impossible to see the transition from the dark areas of the screen to the bezel.

Viewing Angle

Unfortunately the specifications are no help here. Most LCD/LED displays have a quoted viewing angle of 178-degrees. The problem is, that doesn’t tell the reader how good the picture quality is at that angle. To give you an example, I have two laptops: a MacBook Pro 17” with HD monitor and an HP Envy 17. When I move off to an axis of angle of 45-degrees, the Mac looks perfect. When I do the same on the HP, the colors are washed out it looks terrible. Generally speaking, displays using in-plane switching (IPS) are the best for off-angle viewing. (This is the same technology used in tablets like the iPad and Kindle Fire.). So if the display will be mounted where viewers will see it from a sharp angle IPS is probably the best choice for LCD/LED displays.

Plasmas generally have a quoted viewing angle of around 160-degrees. That said, I can look my Kuro at as close to 180-degrees as I can get and it still looks perfect. My best advice would be to look before you buy (which is harder with a commercial model) or consult with an experienced integrator/VAR.

Power Consumption

The utility cost to run digital signage can quickly add up. A 55” LCD/LED typically consumes around 200w, whereas plasma will typically consume around 500w. For a single screen, this results in a difference of almost $300/year (assuming 11-cents/kwh and running 24/7/365). Clearly, for multi-screen installations, this can be a significant extra cost.

Commercial vs. Consumer

Although it’s tempting to buy an inexpensive consumer-grade display for under $1,000, it’s not a good idea. Put simply, commercial displays are not built for the rigors of longer run times and, most importantly, will typically only carry a 90-day warranty for commercial use. Below is a comparison from Samsung of the difference between Consumer and Commercial displays. We’ll take a look at some of these in detail.

 

 HD TV

HD Display

Suggested Use

Consumer

Commercial

Tuner

Built in

Built in Options/External Options for LCD's

Suggested daily usage

Up to 8 hours

Up to 16 hours Commercial Grade

Up to 24 hours Industrial Grade

Electronics/Power Supply

Light Duty

Heavy Duty - Larger Capacitors

Image Retention/Burn-in Reducer

No LCD/Yes Plasma

Yes/Yes - Enhanced

Built in Fans for Longevity

No

Yes - Adjustable Speeds

Heat Sync Technology

No

Yes

Temperature Controls

No

Yes - Auto Panel Shut Down

IR Remote/Button Lockout

No

Yes

Panel Position

Landscape

Landscape and Portrait

Thin Bezel

No

40mm, 20mm, 11mm, 3.7mm

Connections

Designed for TV's

Display Port, RS-232, Video Wall, RJ45

Video Wall

No

Yes - built in Video Wall Processor

Digital Signage Option

No

Yes - built in PC/Software Option

Panel Brightness

Typical 450 Nits

450 Nits, 700 Nits, 1500 Nits

Panel Glare

High Gloss - High Glare

Flat Black - Very Low Glare

Off Timer

Controlled by Remote

Programmable

Warranty

1 Year Residential

3 Months Commercial

3 Year ON SITE

 


 

Warranty

This is probably the single biggest issue for a single-screen (i.e. non-video wall) display. Virtually all vendors have the same stance as Samsung. This should be a good indication whether the display is fit for purpose. If the manufacturer is willing to lay bets on a 90-day lifetime, then you shouldn’t either. A typical commercial display will include a 3-year on-site warranty. This is critical in applications such as menu boards. It’s OK if a flight arrival status board happens to fail, there are a lot of ways to find out about flights, but if the menu can’t be displayed, you can’t sell product. There’s no way you can afford to wait for a 3-4 week repair turnaround under the included return to base warranty.

Aesthetics

Consumer TV’s typically have wider bezels that accommodated speakers and user controls. Below is an example of a current Samsung consumer LCD. For digital signage this is poorly suited for many reasons:

  • Bezel is too thick
  • Bezel is not symmetrical (wider at bottom)
  • Vendor branding is too prominent
  • Visible user controls/status LED’s

This soon becomes obvious when mounted in portrait mode .

For video wall applications, an ultra-thin bezel is mandatory. Modern commercial displays have bezels under 2.5mm. These are creeping into high end consumer models now, but typically at the premium price points.

Electronics

Ignoring the aesthetics, consumer displays should never be mounted in portrait mode. Consumer displays are designed for landscape operation only. A commercial display is designed for either orientation and the heat dissipation mechanism is design for this. They can also withstand more extreme temperature than one designed for a residential living room.

Power supplies, capacitors and fans are all heavy duty for the rigors of 24/7/365 operation.

Consumer displays have limited support for PC resolutions. Commercial displays have to support inputs from a much wider array of input frequencies and resolutions, so tend to have much better internal scalers (or software scaling algorithms.)

Picture

The grayscale on a commercial display is much more linear than that of a consumer display, which tends to be skewed ore towards the bright end of the spectrum to suit broadcast standards (such as NTSC, Rec.709, etc.) The coatings on the glass are also different on commercial displays, which can have a significant effect on the picture under many lighting conditions/viewing angles.

All commercial displays have advance algorithms to prevent burn-in or image retention (which affects LCD as well as Plasma)

Connectivity

It seems that modern consumer TV’s have more inputs than you’d ever need, but commercial models have more input types and more connectivity: most notably RS232 and video loop-through. RS232 allows the screen to be controlled from external devices (typically a digital signage player, or a PC). Loop through allows multiple units to display the same source with no loss of quality. In conjunction with software, it can also be used for video wall applications.

Security

Every consumer display is designed for easy to access to user controls. For commercial displays, the opposite is required. User controls are always hidden and usually have security controls, including the disable user controls and the IR receiver.  Commercial displays are usually powered on or off automatically using VESA power control or via RS232/IP communications.

Conclusion

There are some cases where you can get away with a consumer displays. A company I worked for exhibited at a 3-day expo every year. We purchased three 46” consumer displays for $600/each and they worked great. We used them for 8 hours/day for three days and kept them for two years. (The only reason we got rid of them was that they looked too dated after two years.) For occasional/non-critical use, you could get by with a consumer model. For commercial applications much longer run times are required and the range of connectivity and security is normally higher than consumer displays offer.

Commercial displays are not that much more expensive. A client of mine just bought a Samsung professional 46” LCD for under $1,500. Above all, the 3-year warranty and fitness for purpose should be the overriding factor.

 

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A successful project whose goal was to entertain passers by of the elevated walkway and increase sales of retailers in mall, as well as promote local, regional and national businesses.

Edmonton City Centre attracts local shoppers with NEC video walls and targeted advertising

Contributed by -NEC Solutions (America), Inc. / NEC Display

Quick Facts

  • Facility: Edmonton City Centre
  • Location: Edmonton, Alberta, Canada
  • Challenge: Entertain passersby of the elevated walkway and increase sales of retailers in mall, as well as promote local, regional and national businesses
  • Solution: 46” NEC X462UN

Introduction

A well-known inner city attraction, the Edmonton City Centre (ECC) connects to two downtown hotels and more than 6 million square feet of offices in Alberta’s capital. As of June 2011, the ECC walkway sees more than 4.5 million pedestrians per year with a weekly average of 87,200, according to Canadian Out-of-Home Measurement Bureau (COMB). This intense level of traffic sparked the conversation of installing video walls to increase revenue at local retailers, as well as entertain the passersby.

Challenge

ECC offers a unique retail bridge that connects several downtown buildings and acts as a hub for quick access for commuters. With more than 800,000 square feet of retail space, the Centre sees thousands of daily passersby walking to their office through the walkway that are prime targets for retail advertising. A 2009 in-mall and telephone survey conducted by Advitech estimates 41% of these passersby are between the ages of 25 and 44, comprising a large portion of the shopping population. ECC officials knew that WMC Digital Media was the integrator to make the idea a reality.

Established in 2011, WMC Digital Media, Inc. is a cutting edge integrator based in Edmonton that helps companies create and execute unique, eye-catching advertising. It specializes in the design of marketing and advertising content and aims to connect advertisers with fitting network operators for the most appropriate advertising venues.

“We screened multiple companies in search of the perfect partner for this one-of-a-kind opportunity,” said Olympia Trencevski, General Manager of ECC. “WMC is now taking City Centre to the next level. Our new bridgeway digital video walls will not only be the first-to-market, but will ultimately provide local, regional and international brands with an unprecedented opportunity to speak to our premium demographics in a way like never before.”

“We regularly see a long line of commuters waiting to grab their coffee, and those minutes customers spend in line can be used to attract them to local businesses,” said Walsh McPherson, founder of WMC. “We want to entice their participation in community events or simply entertain them with trivia and news.”

In March 2011, McPherson was tasked as the man in charge of creating interactivity with passersby by utilizing the versatility of LCD displays. From video and animation to audio and RSS feeds, digital signage would allow local marketers to target their messaging to workers and shoppers in the mall. The video walls would need to have the capability to display Twitter feeds and photos sent in by social media users passing through the walkway. Content would be focused on entertaining and engaging locals with fun facts, pop culture and targeted advertising, as well as financial information and sports stats. The unique blend of this digital signage content is designed to pique the interest of all whom pass through the area and lead shoppers to stores within the mall.

“The placement of the video walls was crucial to the success of the project,” said McPherson. “The content would have no purpose, and the project wouldn’t be beneficial if the target audience can’t easily view the video walls. The sizing, placement and location of the video walls were a top priority.”

Solution

In August 2011, McPherson worked with Matrix Video Communications Corporation to discuss selecting a manufacturer to provide LCD displays that would fit the requirements of the project. Timely shipping of the product was crucial, as was the near-seamless appearance with sleek aesthetics. Color calibration was equally as important in order to present matching uniformity across the configurations. Matrix agreed on McPherson’s selection of NEC based on the 24/7 reliability of its ultra-narrow displays. Additionally, NEC’s experience with effective digital signage and its leadership role within the industry made the partnership a perfect match.

Three video walls, comprised of NEC X462UN ultra-narrow LCD displays, were installed at the elevated walkway that joins the east and west buildings that make up ECC. The wall configurations include a 4x4 in landscape (east wall), 2x2 in portrait and 3x3 in landscape (both on west wall). Software and video players were provided by Capital Networks, while the 3x3 video wall’s Trivial Pursuit™ content was provided by Hasbro Canada.

In October 2011, the official launch party of the video walls took place, where local retailers had the first opportunity to see their advertisements displayed on the screens.

To cover the costs incurred from implementing the video walls, ECC and WMC relied on the revenue generated from advertising dollars, and they continue to add new advertisers to the rotation.

“The reaction by locals has been phenomenal, and retailers are impressed with the results they’re getting from this targeted marketing,” said McPherson. “Digital media is growing in popularity because it’s something that people are interested in, looking at and not tuning out, like they would with static signage.”

“The video walls are absolutely fantastic, lively and colorful,” said a launch party attendee. “They give you something to look at when you’re standing in line, and they’re informative. I really believe it’s going to attract good attention, because it’s way better than just pictures. What a fantastic way to get a big bang for your buck.”

Throughout November 2011, the video walls were promoting “Movember”, an international initiative dedicated to raising awareness for men’s health, specifically prostate cancer. The video wall displayed a 15-second clip, encouraging passersby to post their moustache photos to the WMC Facebook page. Officials will select their favorite photos to appear larger-than-life on the video wall during the month. The results of this promotion have been outstanding. WMC has vastly increased traffic to its website and Facebook page and generated many fun and interesting photos.

“Our NEC video walls can be used for absolutely anything,” said Kristina Botelho, Specialty Leasing Manager at ECC. “It’s like a mini Vegas or New York in our bridgeway, where the only limitation is a content creator’s imagination.”

Most recently, WMC has initiated a co-promotion with Century Hospitality Group to give away several floor seats to a major concert event, Prince, in Edmonton. These promotions have resulted in a 42% increase in Facebook likes and have enabled ECC to interact with commuters and shoppers while giving them the chance to see themselves on a large video wall.

“Many of our customers are looking to reach the downtown market because it’s filled with young, urban, hip people,” said Greg Burns, marketing director of ECC. “We’re in an age of social media with Facebook and Twitter, and this falls right in line with that.”

“It’s a good addition to downtown Edmonton,” said Lloyd Lewis, vice president and general manager of CTV Edmonton, provider of the RSS feeds on the video walls. “I support anything that helps this city be robust, and I think this is a piece of that.”

“WMC has proven that this is what retailers and businesses want in the community,” said Donna Zazulak of Zazulak Marketing.

 



Daily News Briefs

 

 

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New Keywest Technology White Paper Explores the Environmental Benefits of Communicating Via Digital Signage

Visit http://www.keywesttechnology.comfor further information

"The Greening of Communications" looks at the impact of competing signage alternatives on the environment and examines how digital signage can be used in an eco-friendly fashion.

Submitted on 05/01/12, 09:04 AM

Lenexa, KS April 29, 2012

Keywest Technology today announced the release of a new white paper that examines the environmental impact of using digital signage technology to communicate with the public.

The white paper, "The Greening of Communications," explores how digital signage can minimize the environmental impact of communicating with the public, specific steps to take with digital signs to ensure they are being used in an eco-friendly manner and how employing "green" strategies with digital signage is a wise business decision.

"Our latest white paper, 'The Greening of Communications,' looks at one of today's hottest issues -protecting the environment- as relates to digital signage," said Keywest Technology president Nick Nichols. "Increasingly, corporations, government and other institutions are casting an introspective eye on how their enterprise impacts the environment. This new white paper will provide them with critical information they can use to help assess the environmental consequences of their signage deployments."

Keywest Technology's new white paper examines a variety of key topics, including: a comparative look at the environmental impact of various signage alternatives; ways to minimize the effect of digital signage on the environment; power consumption; hazardous substances; the impact of display manufacturing; disposal of old technology; and even some best practices regarding the impact of digital signage on the environment. The white paper also explores the often overlooked business benefits that can be derived from going green with digital signage.

It also looks at the benefits that can be achieve by communicating with digital signs while simultaneously taking steps to conserve precious natural resources and protect the environment.

Written in an informative, accessible style, the new white paper provides valuable perspective on digital signage for those who are new to this communications medium as well as those who are industry veterans.

 

 

 

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NRHA Research Shows BrightSign-Powered Digital Signage Increases Hardware Retail Sales up to 178.1 Percent

Visit http://www.brightsign.bizfor further information

Interactive Displays Produced Measurable ROI and Sales Uplift for the Same Products Compared to Stores without Digital Signage

Submitted on 05/01/12, 09:52 AM

LOS GATOS, CA -April 30, 2012- BrightSign, LLC®, a trusted name in the digital signage industry, announced today that the North American Retail Hardware Association (NRHA) has published the results of research comparing sales of specific products in stores that used digital signage for promotion vs. stores that did not. For the research, the NRHA teamed with BrightSign customer, Aubuchon Hardware, a large hardware retail chain with 130 stores in the Northeast.

The results of the NRHA test confirm that product sales increase when interactive digital signage is used. Aubuchon Hardware stores saw unit sales increase by 23 percent for interior paint, 45 percent for smoke detectors and a remarkable 178 percent for air filters in stores with BrightSign-powered digital signage promoting those product specials, compared to Aubuchon stores without digital signage.

Jeff Hastings, BrightSign CEO, will be discussing the findings of the NRHA/Aubuchon research in his seminar, "Increasing Sales with In-Store Digital Signage," during the upcoming National Hardware Show® at the Las Vegas Convention Center, Tuesday, May 1, at 11-11:50 A.M. and Wednesday, May 2, at 2-2:50 P.M.

"The information we've received shows every hardware retail location using our BrightSign players reported significant sales lift," said Jeff Hastings, BrightSign CEO. "The hardware store trials clearly support the fact that highly visible product information with moving graphics and streaming content creates a measurable ROI for store management. When you see such a substantial increase in sales of paint and air filters, certainly not what you would consider impulse buys, the impact of digital signage over printed signs becomes obvious," he emphasized.

For the test, Aubuchon placed endcap digital signage displays powered by BrightSign players in six stores and ran interactive presentations produced by the NRHA for one month. The sales results were then compared to six other stores in the chain that historically had similar sales for the products tested.

Unlike the many static and looping endcap signs that focus solely on price and savings, the test displays alsoinformed shoppers about the benefits of using the product in their homes. Shoppers who wanted more information on the product could press a button located on the display to play a short project-oriented, how-to video.

The BrightSign HD digital signage players that were used to drive the Aubuchon interactive displays were Full HD, solid-state players that make it easy to add interactivity. Using the BrightAuthor software included with all BrightSign players, visual-based interactive playlists can easily be created to trigger content playback from buttons and touch screens.

Priced significantly lower than PC-based solutions, solid-state players cost less to operate since they only require 5-7 watts of power, compared to 70-90 watts for an average PC. They also completely eliminate PC issues such as high maintenance costs, system crashes, and mandatory software/virus updates. And with no moving parts to fail, solid-state players built solely for digital signage deliver increased reliability.

With the complete, ready-to-use BrightSign digital signage solution, including hardware, software and networking capabilities, installation costs are significantly lower as well. This all-in-one approach also eliminates hardware/software compatibility issues and software licensing fees.

BrightSign is now shipping two new interactive, solid-state digital signage controllers as part of its new line of solutions that is more affordable, compact and media friendly than ever before. Offering Full HD playback, the new players include the HD120, a basic interactive model with simple button interactivity and the HD1020, a networked interactive player with advanced interactivity supporting USB, serial, touch screens and mobile devices. BrightSign also offers the HD220, a networked looping player, and the HD1010w, a Wi-Fi enabled interactive player.

Availability, Pricing

The new BrightSign HD product line of interactive and network-enabled players are available from the BrightSign Store with pricesranging from US$250.00 for the HD120 Basic Interactive Model to US$500.00 for the HD1020 Networked Interactive Model. The HD1010w Wi-Fi enabled Interactive Model is priced at US$700.00. Distributor pricing is available upon request. Backed by a one-year warranty, the players include BrightAuthor, a PC software application that simplifies creating, publishing, managing and monitoring digital signage displays, and the networked players include a variety of networking options.

About BrightSign

BrightSign, LLC, based in Los Gatos, California, develops products, software and networking solutions for digital signage. BrightSign solid-state digital sign controllers set new standards for both stand-alone and networked digital signage applications with their superior video quality, reliability, affordability, ease of use and interactivity. Online information about BrightSign units is available at www.brightsign.biz. For US sales inquiries, please contact sales@brightsign.biz or call +1-408-852-9263. For European sales inquiries, please email Pierre Gillet: pgillet@brightsign.biz or call +44-1223-911842. Follow BrightSign at http://twitter.com/brightsign and http://www.facebook.com/BrightSignLLC.

 

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