As 28,000 gathered in Orlando for InfoComm09, digital signage appeared as an integral element of event product displays, education, awards and networking.
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The acceleration in the use and supply of digital signage in the InfoComm community was astounding. Show-of-hands surveys in well-attended training sessions illustrated extraordinary year-over-year growth. 25 percent of session participants at InfoComm 2008 said they were currently or planned to use or supply digital signage. This year, with twice as many session participants, over 75 percent said they are currently or plan to use or supply digital signage.
Many exhibitors privately reflected gaining 500 business leads with 10-25 percent of these being near term business opportunities, while many end user delegates and integrators delved more deeply into product capabilities and relationship opportunities than I have typically seen in a tradeshow environment. InfoComm09 was time very well invested.
High praise goes to InfoComm International Directors Mike White (Multi-Media Solutions) and Chair Jay Rogina (Spinitar), as well as association executives Randy Lemke (Executive Director), Jason McGraw (Expositions), Melissa Taggart (certification, education, and standards), John Fuchs (InfoComm iQ), and their teams.
Setting the stage for digital signage
Elements of the digital signage climate
"Visual is our new language," says retail guru and author Paco Underhill of Envirosell. Visual communications are proving to contribute to higher levels of communications effectiveness in terms of branding, merchandising, cost reductions and improved patron, staff and student experiences.
|Digital signage as a new and emerging application |
Business models are mature and a reliable supply of enabling technology elements are available, along with information on the "why" and "how to" of display systems.
Pressure on AV integrator revenues
The growth in the number of, and high interest of AV integrators adding digital signage to their offerings portfolio as demonstrated at InfoComm09 was simply astounding. The digital signage area of the trade show floor was very busy and digital signage education sessions were highly attended by attentive and engaged delegates. End users showed equal enthusiasm for digital signage.
|Digital signage project revenues |
During the "Manufacturers Forum" which opened the event, Scala's Jeff Porter said the outlook for digital signage was very positive. "A key indicator is the number of RFPs being issued – but also, that these reflect projects that have been more fully and thoughtfully planned. This is a strong indicator that the future of Digital signage will continue to strengthen." Porter also noted Scala's milestone announcement of 100,000 software licenses driving over 300,000 in 75,000 networks in over 100 countries.
|Electrograph business closure |
While a pre-InfoComm announcement by Electrograph was the closing of the distributor, ALMO Corp. announced the launch of an AV distribution division led by Sam Taylor. The group is expected to include up many former Electrograph AV and digital signage specialists.
|Many new products announced |
New partnerships announced
It was common to see business partners included in each others InfoComm09 tradeshow booths. Examples include Noventri with Harris Corp., CognoVision with DynaSign, and several companies in the Spinitar "Digital Signage Application Showcase" including Harris Corp., Cisco and BrightSign.
|Lyle Bunn presents on Technology Trends in Digital Signage at InfoComm09. One of several education sessions aimed at improving Digital Signage planning, network design, selling and "content" skills.|